APP "edited" Grenafege letter?

Democratic candidate for Middletown Township Committee Jim Grenafege sent a letter to the Asbury Park Press regarding Anthony Fiore’s letter a few weeks ago.

(Fiore is a Republican candidate for that same committee, if you didn’t already know.)

I’m actually quite upset, as there is a blatant typo in the very first sentence: Grenafege refers to an “Alan” Fiore, which is an errant displacement when compared to his original letter. I’m looking at a copy of the original right now, and Jim Purcell published it on his blog yesterday.

Firstly, Grenafege titled his letter “Chumming for votes with red herring.”

The Press – arguably – titled it “Candidate rebuts view on police staff.”

Let me begin my criticism by saying I respect The Asbury Park Press and its reporters; there is a lot of thorough, hard work done in their offices. Although “young and dumb,” I somewhat understand that anything submitted to a newspaper must be edited for various reasons. That’s their job, and the Press does it well.

However, I did not think an opinionated letter would be edited for its content. The fine print at the bottom of the Opinion Page states that “all letters are subject to condensation and rejection.” Nowhere does it state a letter could or would be changed to reflect alternate meaning.

What happened to this letter is the perfect example of how any newspaper is able to tamper with words and massacre a person’s meaning. It truly shows the power of the press.

Grenafege knows exactly who ANTHONY Fiore is. The fact that his name was changed both in print and online (click on the headline to visit the APP) is, in my opinion, irresponsible and bleeds advocacy. I have always viewed the APP as favoring Republican points and politicians – and that’s FINE, it’s a fact of life and we all do it. But changing a personal letter submitted to the OPINION section? Eek.

Again, I respect the Press because they publish both Republican and Democratic letters. I don’t know the “ratio” or how “equal” it is, but I have typically seen ALL views expressed on the Opinion Page. But, please – and I would say this to any newspaper – when it comes to letters, why must we let politics guide basic career functions?

Grenafege said he was under the impression “editing,” in the journalistic sense, involved checking for grammatical errors and, at the same time, ensuring that any changes made don’t alter the intended meaning of the piece.

I spoke to Grenafege about several of the “misinterpretations.” I urge everyone to read his original letter posted on The Inside Clamdigger before they pass judgment. The letters could not be more different.

Grenafege also voiced valid concerns about this issue. “If this is how the editing changed my intended meaning, then what is happening with these other letters?” he asked.

Great question. I’d like to know the answer myself. I only hope that, at the very least, “Alan” was a legitimate typo. Gosh, am I crossing my fingers.

I guess I’m just naive to think, despite political parties and personal preferences, that everything is addressed fairly and equally.

If someone is legitimately incorrect, OK. I have no problem addressing human ignorance when it’s warranted. But Grenafege KNOWS, and it upsets me so much to see words tampered with.

I work in a profession where words are all we have. To take someone else’s and change them in what appears an effort to make a candidate look as if he doesn’t know what he’s talking about (my opinion), you might as well take away the option to have an opinion at all.

Politics is not “fair,” and I know I’m part of something that is not necessarily a proponent of giving 100-percent equal attention to both sides. But, damn it, fair is FAIR. There is right or wrong, no in between.

It’s either “Alan” or “Anthony,” and we know who we’re talking about.

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1 Comment

Filed under Anthony Fiore, Jim Grenafege, Middletown, Middletown Township Committee

One response to “APP "edited" Grenafege letter?

  1. Anonymous

    The APP did not print an opinion written that criticized pointedly the reasons the people of Middletown wanted change. Change that has resulted in two Democrats duly elected to serve on the Township Committee.The opinion enumerated the reasons and indicated the writer as well as the democrats serving at one time or another had been discredited as liars or as making false statements because these people DISAGREE with the republicans serving about the way government is run in Middletown. The opinion was credible enough that The Two River Times printed it and the Monmouth Journal also.The editor of the TRT is vice chair of the Republican party in Monmouth County. Kudo’s to that editor,shame on the APP. Guess quality is not always criteria for a daily paper and that is a shame for it’s readers.

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