So wrote Meade in the comments over here, at a Bill Novak blog post, and his comment is now being addressed at a Cap Times blog post, written by Chris Murphy. Murphy's headline is "What do you think, is writing 'tea baggers' off-limits?"
It's not clear to me if Mr. Meade was taking issue with the lack of explanation, using the word in the first place or changing it. I've e-mailed him to ask (and also to find out if he's the same Laurence Meade who won Ann Althouse's heart through his comments on her blog), but no response yet.The objection is — I think it's obvious — to using it in the first place and then to changing it without owning up to the fact that you'd done it and that a correction was required.
If it's the lack of explanation that was the issue, well, now you have it...Put the correction at the site of the original article, not in some other blog post somewhere. You had one thing, and then you replaced it with something else when there was criticism. It's not the explanation that's wanted. It's the transparency. We know the explanation. You got criticized.
... but what if he objected to changing it? Are there a lot of you out there who think we, especially at the liberal-from-the-day-we-were-born Capital Times shouldn't think twice about using a word that raises conservative hackles? I certainly do see it regularly in the comments from tea party opponents.Yes, we live in Madison, Wisconsin, where cluelessness skews left.
... I don't think it's that bad, but I can't say I'm comfortable seeing it in a news story, either. The Associated Press, whose stylebook is the arbiter on many such questions, has not yet weighed in, though its most recent edition does say that "tea party" should be lowercase. Lots of help there. So I'll ask you, gentle readers, what do you think our policy should be?Oh, good lord.
ADDED: Meade writes:
"So I'll ask you, gentle readers, what do you think our policy should be?"
Dear Mr. Murphy,
I think your policy should be based on sound journalistic principles - not what your readers think.
A Gentle Reader