AP Stylebook deletes tweet about 'the French' being 'dehumanized' by media
The unvaccinated not mentioned but the college educated need protection
The esteemed AP Stylebook — which is used by most journalists for consistency across outlets— instructed media on Thursday to stop putting “the” before “French.” The AP wrote that the French are one of the groups that using “the” before labels them in a way that is “often dehumanizing.”
The tweet was got a huge backlash from reporters. A leading French politician mocked it. I saved a screenshot before it was deleted:
I asked AP Stylebook’s spokesperson on Friday morning why "the French" were selected as the nationality that is labeled in a negative way by reporters.
Three hours later, a spokesperson directed me to this new tweet that says the original guidance was deleted because it had an “inappropriate reference to French people.”
Twitter: au contraire
While AP stood its ground on not putting a “the” before French, the left and the right mocked the guidance. NBC’s Ben Collins:
Jake Coyle is an AP reporter!
Even the French don’t care about “the” label. This is conservative politician Eric Zemmour from France:
[The] French embassy in Washington tweeted to mock AP.
Media: N'importe quoi
I did a quick Google news search and found the mainstream media was not following the AP guidance on “the French.” My tweet to AP is still online, so you can click on this one:
These are recent stories in big liberal outlets I showed AP:
“New York Can't Quit the French” in The New York Times
“Why the French Want to Stop Working” in “The Atlantic”
“Represent,” Reviewed: A Witty Attempt to Redefine the French Left” in “The New Yorker”
The College Educated
I also asked AP Stylebook’s spokesperson to direct me to the media stories where the college-educated are being "dehumanized.” She declined to comment
As several pointed out on Twitter, it doesn’t make sense to pick a group that is considered more elite for being labeled and made to feel less than others.
If AP tells reporters not to label people who have more than others, we can no longer write the rich, the powerful, the elites, the physically fit and the media. The consequences will be writing “people who are rich” because people who work for an influential media company said to do so.
No one on Twitter challenged the guidance that leaving out “the” before poor, mentally ill and disabled because there is a solid reason behind it. Those subsets of the population are often considered less than others. Most seemed to agree that changing to “people with mental illnesses” is still accurate but kinder.
A fair criticism of this long-winded guidance is that it contradicts what we have been taught about good writing. Rachael Larimore is the managing editor of “The Dispatch.”
She is correct, but if writing “people who are poor” and “people who are disabled” is factually correct and more compassionate to readers and viewers, we may see that change in some news outlets.
AP: “The unvaccinated”
The response (below) pointed out AP writes “the unvaccinated” for people who have not gotten a COVID vaccine.
She didn’t pull up a a one-time article. The AP has dehumanized the unvaccinated for two years.
AP: Some fear boosters will hurt drive to reach the unvaccinated
AP: Italy targets the unvaccinated with new virus restrictions
AP: US employers ratchet up the pressure on the unvaccinated
Pres. Joe Biden …
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