Philly Mag’s “Being White in Philly” Doesn’t Make Sense as Journalism

Jason Fagone, The Philly Post, March 4, 2013

The March issue of Philadelphia magazine is unfortunate. I saw the issue late last week. I still have sort of a hard time believing it’s real.

{snip} I just wanted to make a few points about why I think the story—”Being White in Philly“—doesn’t make sense as journalism. That’s my lens, and that’s how I’ve been thinking about it.

The writer, Bob Huber, is a friend of mine. He’s hugely talented and has done an impressive amount of great work, but I think he’s misguided here, and I’ve already emailed him to tell him why. The way I see it, the story is doomed before Bob has a chance to write a single sentence. The framing is that this is a story about “being white.” It’s going to explore race from a single point of view. No black people will be quoted, no Hispanic people, no Asian people. (And they’re not.) This seems fatal to me. All Bob can accomplish within the frame of “being white” is exactly what he does accomplish, which is to chronicle the racial fears of one particular group of people, moving among his sources as a kind of confessor.

I say confessor because the quotes he gathers aren’t on the record. Sources are anonymous, names are changed. I don’t like this. I don’t see how you’re going launch a frank discussion of race—the stated goal of the piece, and a worthy one—under a cloak of anonymity.

Another thing I don’t like: The thrust of the piece seems to be that white people are afraid to talk about race because black people have made them feel uncomfortable talking about race. Therefore we can’t solve problems in the city, because a conversation is impossible. The implication is that this is black people’s fault. {snip}

The story is well-intentioned. It’s an earnest and heartfelt attempt to do a good thing—to get people to talk about something that matters. I know Bob well enough to say that. {snip} I fear our good work [journalism at Philly Mag] is going to get lost in the criticism. And we’re going to deserve it.

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  • ncpride

    Seems this guy missed the part in the article where Bob explains we all KNOW what black views on race are, since all we ever hear are their ‘prespectives’, (more like whining and accusations of White racism) while he wanted to get a White point of view. If you read the comments on said article, it’s clear they only want to point the finger in one direction (at us) and any factual data posted, or personal experiences related are met with scorn and attacks. In other words, they don’t want an honest conversation on race, but to continue on with the status quo of blame Whitey.

    • jambi19

      Liberalism would not survive without a boogie man. (Racism,capitalism,homophobia, sexism etc etc)

  • jambi19

    Ask yourself, how many times have you (if similar to my experience then dozens and dozens of times) picked up a magazine/newspaper and read an article along the lines “Being black in Philly/Atlanta/Chicago/ etc etc” and the only people they interview are black? Even if they did interview someone white it’s always some DWL whom regurgitates pc rhetoric such as “legacy of slavery” and “we need to invest in communities of color”. Fagone complains in this piece why people are anonymously quoted. Why is that? It is because you would destroy each of their reputations just like you are doing Bob Huber in order to get some pathetic moral high ground/ liberal intelligensia reputation enhancement or something. If you didn’t lord knows the quoted’s professor,employer or neighbor would.

    • The__Bobster

      When they inteview Whites at random, they just throw out the interviews they don’t like.

  • SargeInCharge

    How many white people did Soledad O’Brien interview for her “Being Black in America” series?

    Do you think this author, Jason FagOne, had similar reservations about CNN’s single race perspective?

    • ncpride

      I believe she has also done one called ‘Being Latino in America’…But of course that’s perfectly acceptable.

      • The__Bobster

        Can you trust a reporter who is Irish one day, Mestizo the next and then a Bantu on the third day? (Good thing I have a photographic memory and memorized the post before it was deleted.)

        http://www.vdare.com/articles/by-popular-request-more-on-soledad-obrien-this-years-vdwira-winner

        But something about this year’s winner, CNN’s Soledad O’Brien, interested readers so much that I couldn’t help going back to investigate her Worst Immigration Reporter credentials further.

        Prompted by Nicholas Stix’s blog that addressed more O’Brien hypocrisy, I asked myself: is it possible that she fools her entire audience? Is O’Brien only pulling the wool over the eyes of her gullible media peers—or has she conned everyone?

        After all, O’Brien is a self-proclaimed Hispanic who doesn’t speak Spanish, a self-labeled black who looks white—and a so-called Irishwoman who only identifies herself as Irish to get laughs when she’s introduced at one of the meaningless award ceremonies she is forever attending.

    • sbuffalonative

      They use Disqus so I encourage you and everyone to join the discussion online.

      • SargeInCharge

        Great call. It’s always good to spread the truth on other sites.

      • ncpride

        I did on the orginal article, so be prepared for snide remarks and countless attacks.

      • ms_anthro

        Yes, please do this. There must be millions of Whites out there who feel alone and have no idea that sites like AmRen exist. It’s our job to light the candle for them.

        • johnnydent

          I voted up your responses on that web site.

        • NM156

          The lopsided pile-on by angry whites in the comments section was very funny. The brainless opposition has been shut down. Too bad that would never be allowed on Slate or the NYT.

          • asktask

            Of course liberals and blacks don’t want to hear anything but “whites-are-bad-and-they-must-pay” speech. They get very nasty when you disagree with them and it’s the usual reaction “racist, ignorant, you need to read some books, did your parents beat you, etc” and all these other stupid, childish personal attacks the liberals and anti-white people use.

  • IstvanIN

    1) the article was about White people’s feelings, not blacks, Hispanics or Asians, therefore their opinions were not needed.
    2) White’s fears must be addressed anonymously, otherwise they will be attacked and loose their jobs.
    3) blacks have made frank discussions about race impossible because any mention of black society’s dis-functionalism, and they are the most dysfunctional identifiable group in the nation, is considered racism, regardless of how true the comments are.
    4) Whites are disproportionately the victims of hate crimes by blacks, although the government won’t prosecute them as such. Eric Holder Obama’s AG, said we don’t have civil rights protections. They have little to fear from us, we have MUCH to fear from them.
    5) Fagone, get off your disingenuous white liberal pedestal and join the real world the rest of us have to live in.

    • saxonsun

      Connected to no. 3 on your list is the way we ignore black behavior. Here in NYC a black kid was shot for pointing a gun at the cops. Well, the blacks “protested” by trashing a Rite Aid store. And we sit back and do nothing.

  • Biff_Maliboo

    Methinks the original piece hit a sore spot.

    • The__Bobster

      Two sore spots from the same rag, a rag I’ve never heard of.

  • Even though this tunnel visioned tool doesn’t even live in my time zone, I still feel like kicking in my monitor at the thought that Mr. FagOne was actually able to land a job as a writer.

    It it doesn’t make sense to you, Mr. FagOne, then you need to reconsider your profession. You are either a boy without a clue, or you’re afraid to face what’s in front of you. Either way, your name will never be mentioned with the all time great journalists like William Randolph Hearst, Bob Woodward, and Joseph Pulitzer.

    Go back to writing about eating contests, Jason.

  • 3Inns

    Journalism is not about finding and reporting facts. It is about advancing the Leftard Religion. Facts are things Leftards decide on in advance of evidence. Anything that disagrees with these preconceived truths is a “hatefact” (TM).

    Anything that shows Whites in a sympathetic light is, by default, heresy and therefore not “journalism”.

    • The__Bobster

      Journalism died a long time ago. Today’s it’s just advocacy.

  • bigone4u

    This writer thinks that white people shouldn’t write about their experiences, their emotions, their morality, without consulting other races, quoting them, and gaining their approval. Does he also think white people should get the permission of blacks to take a pee pee? Where does liberal nonsense end? It doesn’t. It stretches out to infinity.

    • pcmustgo

      Whites are not human according to these PC types. We always need to check in with the “People of Color” authority figures.

  • Tim_in_Indiana

    You should interview only blacks for an article about ”Being Black in Philly.“

    You should interview only blacks for an article about ”Being White in Philly.“

    Any questions?

  • Unperson

    The implication is that this is black people’s fault.

    That’s about the size of it, yes.

    I’m really annoyed by this notion that white people’s opinions aren’t valid unless they’re accompanied by black people’s opinions — even when the subject at hand is how it feels to be White!
    We White people are being deligitimized as a precursor to being dispossessed. We are being forced to accept the idea that we think, what we feel, what we want, just doesn’t count. We are being made into Unpersons.

    • liberalsuck

      I agree. That’s why The Political Cesspool doesn’t quote nonwhites who spout similar views to theirs and ours. James Edwards once said something like, “I appreciate their views, but I don’t need them for validation.”

  • Jss

    Sense journalism is nothing more then propaganda these days who cares what they think? I take being told something doesn’t make sense from a mainstream journalistic stand point as an endorsement. The day mainstream journalism says something I believe “makes sense” then I know that’s something I might need to reevaluate. Criticism from known anti White liars means less then nothing to me.

  • Eagle_Eyed

    Some serious take downs going on in the comment section of the original article. Would recommend reading them.

    • Paleoconn

      Ms_Anthro has put them all in her back pocket. I wonder where all these people live? I know: lily-white neighborhoods and their only experience with race I’m guessing is watching Michael Vick or the Sixers on the tube or at the stadium. Hypocrites.

  • pcmustgo

    Honestly, “Jen” and the writer of that article are still stuck on “our poor black neighborhoods” and sort of liberal paternalism combined with a passive aggressive disdain of blacks disguised as wanting to help them.

    The author is about 40 nasty experiences with Blacks away from being an amren reader. Or basically deciding to completely avoid blacks.

    I went through this stage too.

    It’s a spectrum.

    Naive /Clueless about Race

    Willing to Admit Blacks Create Their Own Problems/Single Parenting/ etc

    Fed Up

    Reading Amren

  • cecilhenry

    WE need MORE of this.

    Whites speaking out on their own terms about their own racial interests. Not someone else’s filter.

    Did you see the White Genocide Petition discussion on MSNBC??

    NOT ONE white person advocating for whites or speaking on behalf of white racial issues.

    Absolutely insane–and absurd.

    Media is always careful not to give whites a REAL voice.

    • liberalsuck

      This is why the MSM is losing subscribers and viewers. Normal white people who are fed with how things are going don’t listen to them. The angry nonwhites and self-hating whites listen to them.

  • Thomas Katt

    This guy is getting buried, absolutely pwned, in the comments section. It’s at least 10:1 against him. Unreal.

  • IKantunderstand

    OMG. I am totally right. They are getting ready to exterminate us. First, our jobs; then our opinions, it’s all right there for us to see. Bob Huber is dissed because , simply, he is White. His opinion does not count. And he has the temerity to try and discuss race. He should know, that when it comes to discussing race, Whites NEVER win. Seriously? The moral of the story is this: Be as racist as you want to be, ain’t gonna matter, becuz you are already deemed racist because you are White.

    • bubo

      As long as we have the guns, and we do, there won’t be any extermination. The fight for the second amendment is literally life or death.

    • saxonsun

      It’s possible they will try to confiscate out property/wealth. I think sometimes I’m being paranoid but…

      • liberalsuck

        If they try to confiscate property of any type, they will be met at the door with an angry ‘good ole’ boy’ armed with a shotgun or AR-15 who will empty the entire chamber onto them. They won’t be able to hide that story either and more and more fed up people will take notice and prepare. They aren’t going to displace everyone; certainly not without armed conflict.

  • Zackers

    ” I fear our good work [journalism at Philly Mag] is going to get lost in the criticism”

    Cue the acid commenting on ‘all the good work’ they’ve done. . . .

  • JackKrak

    So it’s only when the topic of “being white” is finally broached that other journalists will rush in with their journalism rulebook and question the sources, motivations and point of the author. Good to know.

    This reminds me of columns by the odious Leonard Pitts of the Miami Herald. There was a time when about half of his articles had sentences like “…and then my six year old son, with tears in his eyes, looked up at me asked why white people hated him.” No one ever questioned his “sources” or wondered why he didn’t include “opposing views”. Then again, he’s black so he doesn’t have to worry about that.

  • R. Hess aka Prince of Peace

    Jason Fagone def.-disengenuous moral masturbator.

    So because Huber’s subjects are kept anonymous, their stories aren’t to be trusted, according to Fagone.

    Since I’m currently writing as an anonymous commenter, I suppose these personal accounts of “Being White in Philly” are untrue as well?

    My Uncle beat over the head with a hammer for the crime of delivering home heating oil (his job at the time) to black neighborhoods.

    My 4th grade friend’s Uncle being murdered on the sidewalk for his necklace.

    My home being burglarized.

    Me, at gunpoint, being forced to give a fine young colored gentleman a ride to his favorite local watering hole. You see, the noble young lad didn’t wish to part me from my cash, sneakers, and automobile. No, this socio-economic underdog was simply thirsty and decided to help himself to a bit of my privelege by threatening to kill me if I didn’t drive him to “da muhfukkin bar up over at Diamond Street!”

    And of course, being harassed DAILY anytime one visits ANY and EVERY convenience store by lazy bums. This is a fact of life in Philly, as well as every other metro area. But its bad in Philly.

    I could go on for days. Unfortunately, my mother’s work requires that she travel into some of the worst neighborhoods in Philly. If any harm befell her, God had better say a prayer for the perpatrators.

    • rebelcelt

      Of course they do not want to be identified there are reprecussions. Losing jobs, home vandalized, ostricized, etc.