Hypocrital [sic] Newspapers
The hypocrisy of the press was never
more fully demonstrated than in the case of certain newspaper [sic].
Several of these were conspicuous in their hostility to the president
just before he was shot by Czolgosz. President McKinley was then
classed as a czar, a despot, a tool of Mark Hanna, father of trusts
and almost everything bad. Cartoons were run ridiculing him day
after day. In one series of cartoons McKinley was represented as
a very, very goody kind of a weakly child, while the vice president,
Roosevelt, was shown with his dreadful teeth to decided advantage,
and a look upon his face that would do credit to the wildest and
woolliest anarchist that ever found a place in the imaginative brain
of the average plutocratic newspaper writer.
When McKinley was shot there was a
very sudden change in the policy of these papers. The cartoons ridiculing
McKinley, Hanna and Roosevelt cease to appear, while the paper bubbled
over with encomiums and eulogies of “our beloved President.” McKinley
suddenly changed from an arch demon of the vilest kind to an angel
of the purest purity. Not only did the newspapers’ attitude change
from abuse to extreme praise for McKinley, the man, but it suggested
that in the event of McKinley’s death Vice President Roosevelt could
not do better than to follow in the footsteps of the President,
who before the shooting was so thoroughly detested, and carry out
the policy which he had outlined.
The newspaper referred to are [sic]
no different from other papers. We find since the assassination
of President McKinley that every newspaper which formerly berated
him has changed its tactics and is now burying his memory under
a perfect shower of eulogistic praise. He has, according to his
old enemies, who classed him almost with the devil, nearly become
a second Christ.
Out upon this contemptible hypocrisy.
If a man pursues a bad policy before he dies, his death does not
change the badness into goodness. We presume the millenium [sic]
will be here before newspapers are honest and sincere, but we should
not have to wait until then before they get to be a little more
truthful than they are.