SInce there is so much political activity right now a lot of what is being written in the opinions section is about the upcoming election. So I chose to look at three opinion pieces that have some connection to the election. Two are from the Sunday Star Tribune and one is from the Miami Herald.
The first one from the Star Tribune is written by Garrison Keillor. I usually like reading his pieces so thats where I started reading and I was surprised by the turn his article took at the end. At first he was talking about being in church and how we all need to be kind to one another and then all of a sudden he switched to talking about the election and how Americans need to do the right thing and vote for Obama. I thought it was kind of a strange way to write a piece endorsing Obama because 3/4ths of the article are about how there are so many people suffering and as fellow humans we need to think about this people. I guess I can kind of see the connection between doing the right thing for other people and doing the right thing on election day but the change was just so abrubt I thought it was a little confusing at first. But besides that I liked the piece because everything Garrison Keillor writes has humor and is always fun to read.
The next opinion piece was written by the editor of the editorial section of the Star Tribune, Scott Gillespie. This piece was interesting because it was explaining that in the upcoming weeks the Star Tribune was going to be endorsing candidates running for a wide variety of office including president and why they were going to do this. I liked it because Gillespie first wrote about how his father had been an editor and was an ardent supporter of objectivity, especially during elections. He then went on to say why he felt it was important for the Star Tribune to endorse candidates and tell the reader why. He wrote that the Star Tribune has printed material for and against candidates and that by endorsing one in particular they were not trying to tell the reader how they should vote, they just hope that the reasons they give for the endorsement will help those who are still undecided. Even though I think its fairly obvious which candidates they will endorse I really liked that they printed this to explain the reasons behind why they would forgo objectivity and endorse a candidate. I think it shows that journalism can be about more than just presenting people with the bare facts. The other thing I liked about it is that I actually didn't know before I read this that some newspapers will come out and officially endorse a candidate.
The last piece from the Miami Herald was their endorsement of Obama for president. What I liked about this piece was the clear way they stated why they felt Obama was better suited for the job than McCain. They gave examples of actually policy decisions each candidate has made and for each one said why they felt Obama made the better decision. But even while supporting Obama they never made any attacks on McCains decisions, they just said they agreed more with Obama. I think if someone was an undecided voter this piece would provide them with a lot of important information that would help them make their decision. From reading the Star Tribune article it seems that this is the point of newspapers endorsing a candidate, to help people make an educated decision, and I think the Miami Herald achieved this with their endorsement.