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Shoe-Leather Reporting

Again we ask: Why all the fuss about anonymous sources? The practice of news judgment has atrophied to the point where the "flip-flop" scandal involving the Northwestern University lacrosse team's visit to the White House was set in motion by a columnist for the Chicago Tribune's luridly crappy Gen-X giveaway rag, Red Eye. It seems that Chicago Tribune editor Ann Marie Lipinski was rebuffed when she pitched the dubiously appropriate footwear item to her managing editors. But in a meeting with Red Eye columnist Maegan Carberry, she gamely resurrected the item. Here's Carberry's gripping account:


"I said `Oh, the flip-flops.' . . . She said, `Exactly!'"

"Oh, the flip-flops"? Truly a dictum to rank with "Follow the money" and "You're missing the overall." And so on to the Trib's front page, and then the Today Show. Say what you will about the next generation of ink-stained wretches: They do know how to identify the footwear. And suck up to their bosses.

Put Your Feet Up, There's More to the Flip-Flop Story [Chicago Tribune]

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It started with them damn hats. (Image: Wikimedia Commons)

A guest post by "Knitsy McPurlson," which we suspect is not a real name.

Yr Wonkette is not the only website run by brilliant peoples unafraid to poke people with sharp, pointy sticks. Ravelry.com – a website for knitters, crocheters, and other folks interested in textiles and fiber arts – is poking people with knitting needles, which are very sharp indeed.

This past weekend, Ravelry.com's founders showed the world how easy it is to de-platform white nationalists and racists when they banned all "support of Donald Trump and his administration" from their website, concluding they "cannot provide a space that is inclusive of all and also allow support for open white supremacy." Seems like people smart enough to decode a knitting pattern are also smart enough to decode Trump's not-so-hidden message of racism and white nationalism.

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One day, God willing, my grandchildren will click open their history textbooks and read about the Central American migrant internment camps. They'll learn about sick kids, locked in cages, kept hungry and dirty and cold for weeks on end, and they'll be horrified.

"Bubbie," they'll say, "how could this happen in America? How could there be toddlers sleeping on the ground without blankets, without soap or toothbrushes to clean themselves?"

"I don't know. I wish I had done more. I'm ashamed," I'll say. We will all have to answer for this atrocity. But some of us will have to answer more than others. Not just the archvillains like Stephen Miller and John Kelly, but the people who kept right on doing their jobs, even as those jobs morphed into defending concentration camps.

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