"call a spade a spade" furor

George Thompson george.thompson at NYU.EDU
Wed Nov 14 19:37:18 UTC 2001

And this brings to mind the story (that I can't document) that the NYC
newspaper the Herald (it merged with the Tribune in 1924) had a policy
that when the name of the paper appeared in a newsstory it should
always be italicized.  This led to a report on a Christmas service with
the sentence "The choir then sang a lovely rendition of Hark,
the /Herald/ Angels Sing".  (/Herald/ in italics, of course.)


George A. Thompson
Author of A Documentary History of "The African
Theatre", Northwestern Univ. Pr., 1998.

----- Original Message -----
From: "James A. Landau" <JJJRLandau at AOL.COM>
Date: Wednesday, November 14, 2001 2:06 pm
Subject: Re: "call a spade a spade" furor

> In a message dated 11/14/01 1:45:56 PM Eastern Standard Time,
> laurence.horn at YALE.EDU writes:
> > "In the early 1990's, a humorous item in the British Guardian
> >  newspaper reported that the Fresno Bee, a California newspaper, had
> >  been forced to run a curious correction.  Inadvertently, the
> Bee had
> >  referred to 'a plan for putting Massachusetts back in the
> >  African-American.' "
> Many years ago (quite possibly in 1936-1939) the _Courier-Journal_ in
> Louisville, Kentucky, had a then-politically-correct house policy
> always to
> use the term "War Between the States" rather than "Civil War."
> This policy
> was dropped when one day an article appeared int he _Courier-Journal_
> referring to "the Spanish War Between the States".
> Moral---if you have a house policy, sooner or later someone will
> find a way
> to take it overly literally.  This is a minor corollary of a
> proverb which
> I'm sure Fred Shapiro has recorded: "Once you make something idiot-
> proof,they invent a bigger idiot."
>          - Jim Landau

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