Monday, November 21, 2011

NY Times: When does "sexual assault" mean "rape"

Much to read in newly dense Sunday's NYTimes Week in Review, including this Public Editor piece about the paper's alleged reluctance to use the word "rape" when referring to the Penn State scandal:

"As the Jerry Sandusky case at Penn State University shows, reporting on allegations of sex crimes poses a challenge not only to get the story right but to deliver it in language that puts the facts in the proper light.

Some readers, responding to The New York Times’s first reports on the case, strongly objected to wording in the articles that, in their view, either underplayed the details or wrongly applied the language of consensual sex to the narrative.

The objections focused on the most severe of the accusations against Mr. Sandusky, a former Penn State assistant coach. According to the grand jury report, he subjected a boy estimated to be 10 years old to “anal intercourse” in locker room showers at the university in 2002. "

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