Where the NYT editorial board goes over the line*The Jan. 13 New York Times “Politicians and Textbooks,” editorial compares Mr. Abe’s effort to endorse textbooks whitewashing the Korean sex slaves issue with President Park Geun-hye’s introduction of textbooks that reflect differing views on Korea’s history of colonialism and postcolonial dictatorships. The former can never receive justification, for it “denies” historical facts substantiated by ample evidence. The latter, however, resembles the former in no way that it “reviews” historical facts from different perspectives. Equating pure denial with review is a flawed comparison. The editorial shows no sign of journalism ethics, citing no source when it associates “a majority of professionals and elite civil servants” in Korea with Japanese colonizers. In journalism, facts backed by data command authority; this line fails to do so.
by Choi Si-young, Editing advsor of Yonsei European Studies at Yonsei University