The Washington Post’s Offensive Lede

The Washington Post published an article today entitled “Knowing cultural view of virginity, Chinese women try surgical restoration.” Yes this is an awkward headline, but this is not the problem that I have with the piece.

“China has long been known as the land of fakes — Rolexes, DVDs, handbags and designer clothes.  Add a new one to the list: fake virgins.”

The article is about an important topic of medical surgeries and cultural diversity in China.  However, the lede is treated as though it is a feature piece or light-hearted news story.  The lede is very important in gaining an audience that will continue reading the entire article.  However, it is equally important that the lede suits the mood of the story.

This REALLY REALLY does not.  Also, I can see where it would be offensive to those that believe in the surgical procedure, and even those Chinese citizens that do not.  This creates a very bizarre stereotype that all Chinese citizens produce merchandise and believe in “hymen restoration” surgery.

The rest of the article beyond the lede is perfectly well-written.  But how many people really get past the lede?  I just can’t believe it made it past all of the Post’s editors

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2 Responses to “The Washington Post’s Offensive Lede”

  1. Excellent. It’s the same here in Phoenix. Can be extremely frustrating, but that’s how it is on Planet Earth. Bob Perry, Work New York, 65 Chambers Street, New York, NY 10007

  2. Greetings! Well done. That was a interesting article. I am ready to hear more about this particular topic. Will be in touch. Greetings from Kiev. Bob Perry, Work New York, 65 Chambers Street, New York, NY 10007

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