Friday, October 30, 2009

How the beautiful people live

Normally, I buy The Post-Star at the newsstand every day, which may surprise readers of this blog, as I like to have something to read when I'm eating lunch. Sometimes if I'm eating dinner out, I'll buy a second newspaper. In the past, it's usually been the Albany Times-Union, but I haven't bought that recently because of the boycott against it.

I looked at the other papers. The Schenectady Gazette covers issues outside my region of interest. I deemed The Saratogian a poor use of my 75 cents (imagine a paper with less quality and content than The Post-Star that costs 50 percent more). I didn't feel like paying 6 bucks and leg and two fingers or whatever The New York Times is changing now. And there was no way I was giving a dime to Rupert Murdoch's New York Post. So I ended up getting a New York Daily News to read with my meatball sub. It's not the highest quality news organization but it has its entertainment value.

I was intrigued by a very unentertaining story about wife-beating allegations against a prominent TV news anchor. The big shot warned the judge, "I've appeared on the cover of The New York Times and TV Guide... I covered the state attorney general and the chief judge of the court," before bragging about how he knew the state's recently retired top judge.

First, the wife called 911 to accuse her husband of beating her. Now that the case has gone to trial, she's claiming she lied because she was mad at him; recantations under pressure are not that uncommon in domestic abuse cases. Though she did admit in court that her husband called her a "dumb, stupid, project bitch."

One argument in her defense was revealing, though. In recanting, she claimed that it was actually a day laborer, not her husband, who assaulted her, but that she couldn't remember his name.

"You don't ask a laborer his name," she explained. "You ask a laborer to work."

I don't quite get why showing a laborer the basic human dignity of asking his name is so taboo, why it goes without saying that she'd never do such a thing. But then again, I'm not part of the glitterati.

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