The Interpreter, one of the official organs of The United Methodist Church, published online and in print of their May-June edition an admittedly poorly edited article. It was filled with at least one set of misquotes of Dr. Kevin Watson. Online, the article was floated on 13 May. Their original article has been removed for revision, which I believe will likewise see a correction in the next print edition.
How did we get to this point? Through a very congenial offering by Dr. Kevin Watson. He states he asked for, but did not receive a draft of the story, explains the confusion, and then ends his post with,
Since the print version of the magazine is already out, I am publishing my response here to clarify what I believe. I hope that Interpreter will publish a correction to this article online and in their next print issue.
Kathy Noble graciously replies,
Interpreter magazine deeply regrets that the article “One faith, different understandings” was edited in such a way as to misrepresent Dr. Watson’s thinking. We acknowledge that he has a valid concern and we sincerely apologize for the error.
The error occurred during the editing process and not through any fault of the author. It was entirely unintentional and not meant to misrepresent Dr. Watson’s perspective. We accept full responsibility and are taking steps to rectify the error to the extent possible through an online revision and a published correction. Fair and accurate reporting is critically important to us, and we will redouble our efforts to make sure that our articles accurately convey the intended meaning.
Please note the time. Shortly – like 9 minutes later – Cynthia Astle replied,
Kevin, I’m preparing an article for United Methodist Insight on this conflict. I do have one question that you may respond to me via email if you choose: Did you make any attempt to resolve this issue in private before you went public with your concerns?
I would appreciate hearing from you immediately as I intend to publish an article about this conflict in this week’s issue. Thank you.
Look at the violent words from Astle… “conflict” … and a threat of immediate action on her part. Even after Watson replied that he felt like there was an honorable resolution, Astle published what is nothing more than a hit piece.
Her words, again carefully chosen to incite violence against Watson’s character include “conservative,” “chastise,” and “stinging rebuke.” None of that is true. Her article, besides the add dramatic flair, is nothing more than a regurgitation of Watson’s article and some of the comments that followed.
This is the sort of “journalistic integrity” that caused several of us to pull our stuff from her site — because she portrays herself as unbiased, but in fact attempts to follow the late Roger Ailes into building nothing more than a money pit capitalizing off people’s rage, a rage she helps to foster and enlarge. She regularly hosts what amounts to the UMC’s version of InfoWars on her site, wherein she contributes to the psychological gaslighting of her readers. And this? Just another instance of intellectual vice that has come to plague the “Left” of The United Methodist Church.
Journalism is a calling of callings — up there with teachers, pastors, and caregivers. To see Astle trash it by suggesting what she does is in fact journalism is simply beyond me.