Letter to the Editor #2

New York Times online had the article I jabbed at posted for less than 15 minutes before I started giving guff to Richard Perez-Pena. The story is about the out of court settlement involving a recently defeated (and crotchity) presidential candidate, a female lobbyist and an illicit love affair that never even happened. Perez-Pena explained the closing of the book on the Times’ part in an alleged story from February, 2008 in which McCain was accused of having an affair with a female lobbyist. The Times decided to settle the suit against them by letting the accused lobbyist share her story in the Times. Executive editor Bill Keller boasted that the Times settled the case, “without The Times backing away from the story”. I found this article to be in the better interests of the Times rather than the accused woman who’s career could be on the line due to an under researched article. Here is my e-mail to Perez:

Dear Richard Perez-Pena,

Your New York Times story on February 19, “Libel Suit Against The Times”, stood out to me as an unnecessary unburial of old news. I am disappointed to find out that the Times would even run a story like the one that was ran last year inciting that Senator John McCain had an affair during his run in the most historical election in U.S. history. I would expect a newspaper of such high authority to run less bipartisan blows during the election and although the settlement fared well for all parties, I am empathetic for the accused woman for the continuing coverage of this libel ridden scandal. Your article reads more like a save of face for the New York Times than an apology to the poor woman in defense.

Lee Taylor
Amherst, MA

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