I far prefer the New York Post to the New York Times. The Post is less pretentious, has a much more reality-based editorial section, and has articles that you actually want to read. If the Times is dinner, the Post is dessert.
Sometimes, maybe too much so.
You've probably heard by now that a woman named Sherri Papini was kidnapped, then released a few weeks later, in northern California. (Yahoo and other outlets have given this story plenty of coverage as well.)
On November 24th, the Post ran Abducted jogger found alive bound on side of interstate, featuring this photograph:
On November 25th, Abducted mom 'very emotional' after authorities found her, featuring this photograph:
On November 26th, Abducted jogger was found chained, beaten.
On November 28th, Cops: Abducted jogger's horror story appears to be true.
On November 29th, Kidnapped jogger was branded, starved nearly to death.
On November 30th, Abducted jogger had message burned in her skin.
On December 1st, Jogger coughed up blood from screams for help: Husband.
Again on December 1st, Abducted jogger was nearly killed by driver who saved her.
On December 2nd, Husband recalls moment he found out abducted jobber was alive, featuring this photograph:
Again on December 2nd: Elizabeth Smart: Abducted jogger will never be the same. This article mentioned that Smart was raped four times a day by her kidnapper.
And today, December 3rd: How this jogger survived a 3-week kidnapping nightmare.
A question with an obvious answer is, would the Post, and other news outlets, have run so many articles about Papini's abduction if she weren't so delectable?
Of course not.
(Many of those articles featured videos which included more shots of Papini looking mouthwateringly sexy.)
There have been plenty of other cases of kidnapping and rape which get far, far less publicity. But few of those women looked as if they could be the prototypes for future sexbots.
There are murders which get less attention than Sherri did. In fact, there are multiple murders which get less.
For the past two weeks, the New York Post might as well have been called the New York Papini.
I'm not claiming to be any better than anybody else. I read every one of those articles. I, too, looked at those pictures of Papini and thought, damn. And I wondered exactly what had happened to Papini during the two weeks when she was held hostage. Exactly what had happened.
I'm only human.
And so are the Post's other readers, which is why the Post and all those other news outlets paid so much attention to the abducted jogger, as she is now known.
Google "Sherri Papini" and you'll get 892,000 results.
After all, the business of journalism is to attract as many readers as possible.
The Post does it with titillation.
The Times does it by constantly trying to show that it is more "high-minded" than the Post and its ilk. Even if that supposed "high-mindedness" means ignoring and denying human nature at every turn.
I'll take the Post, any day.