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Hate vandalism in St. Cloud

The carvings of two swatiskas were found on the St. Cloud State campus Saturday, and SCS is not looking the other way. Police are currently investigating the incident, calling it "bias motivated property damage", according to the Strib. College officials and students were featured in the stories.

I thought this was a very interesting story, and I wanted to examine the way that touchy subjects such as racism are dealt with in newswriting. The St. Cloud Times, clearly having a proximity advantage -- as well as obligation -- took a much more in-depth look at the issue than the Strib. It covered the incident, consequences and related occurances. The Strib just did a quick who,what,why,when,where,how. The Times was of course more interesting, although it's probably just fine that the Strib didn't give it too much print. Not being an extremely serious issue, the newsworthiness of the event minimizes with every mile further one gets from St. Cloud, in my opinion. But I did think it was good that the Strib had a brief about it. It seems like it has had a sizeable impact on the St. Cloud community and therefore worth bringing to the attention of Twin Cities residents.

One thing I found interesting about both of these articles is that niether addressed that it might just be dumb college kids that think they're funny. To me, this seems a whole lot more likely than it actually being an act of hate. I suppose a publication has to be very careful with a thing like this though.

http://www.sctimes.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20071118/NEWS01/111170045/1009
http://www.startribune.com/462/story/1558491.html