I Don’t Know Anything About Canadian Press Standards

But something about this National Post story was very…odd. I mean, obviously the subject matter was the horrific slaying on the Greyhound bus. But subject matter aside what is somewhat glaring is the way Mr. McLean is referred to.
At the top of the article is a picture of him and a caption with his name, so obviously they knew his name when the story was published. But in the body of the article his name is never mentioned; he is only referred to by his race or as “the victim.”

…Among them was an aboriginal man in his early twenties, listening to headphones and headed home to Winnipeg.
…When the bald man returned to the bus, he moved to the back, tossed his bags in an overhead bin and sat down beside the aboriginal man with the headphones, who had fallen asleep with his head against the window.

It’s as if you wrote a story about Obama and McCain but only talked about the “black guy” and the “white guy.”
I find it very strange; of what possible relevance is Mr. McLean’s race?

5 Responses to “I Don’t Know Anything About Canadian Press Standards”

  1. TokyoPlumber says:

    The article may have been written before it was confirmed that Tim McLean was the victim. The photo and caption could have been added just prior to releasing the complete article (ie, when Tim’s identity had been confirmed).
    Aboriginal issues and racism are matters of note on the Canadian prairies. There are significant aboriginal communities in Winnipeg, Regina and Saskatoon (ie, and rural parts of Saskatchewan and Manitoba). It’s possible that the person writing the article was anticipating further developments that would suggest Tim McLean’s race may have been a factor in what happened … you’d have to check with the article’s author to be sure. Based on what’s known at this point it seems that race was not an issue and Tim was targeted at random.

  2. Mr. Bingley says:

    Thanks Tokyo; that seems reasonable. But gosh you’d have thought they would update/edit it by now; it’s certainly easy enough to do.

  3. Retread says:

    Why didn’t the writer mention the perp’s race?

  4. Creatrix says:

    I wondered about that as well.
    Apparently, McLean’s mother had been on a cruis in Alask when this happened, which explains why it took so long for them to identify the victim publically: they wanted to be sure his mother didn’t hear from the media. I think they found out that way anyway, but it was a nobel attempt.
    Retread makes a good point. If racism was suspected as the motive, why wouldn’t Li’s race be mentioned?
    I really suspect the killer had a psychotic break. This probably won’t even go to trial: the guy will be intitutionalized.

  5. Mr. Bingley says:

    Gosh, those poor folks, Creatrix.
    It just breaks the heart that they found out from some press cold call.
    Oh, he’s definitely a nut-job.

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