WSJ’s James Taranto Flunks His Ethics Test

A longtime Taranto fan, I was waiting for his Monday installment of his “Best of the Web” blog on te Wall Street Journal site to see if he would retract his flat-out wrong and grossly unfair characterization of the Missoula “Mikado.” Alas, he chose to double down, apparently in thrall to a conservative, Gilbert and Sullivan deprived readership:

“On Friday we noted that a theater company in Montana had inserted into its production of Gilbert and Sullivan’s “The Mikado” a lyric calling for the beheading of Sarah Palin. By the close of business that same day, Michael McGill, executive director of MCT Inc., had announced remedial action…”

[The lyric, once again, is: “And that crazy Sarah Palin, needs a psychoanalyst!  She never would be missed.  No. She never would be missed.” Would any fair, sane, English comprehending person say that this “calls for the beheading of Sarah Palin”? Of course not.  Yet there it is.]

Thus Taranto follows a pattern I have noticed among many of the false critics of the production. They don’t seem to care what the facts are, or what is fair. They just want to rise to poor Sarah’s defense, and are willing to victimize an innocent small theater company of very nice, talented, dedicated people to do it.

Ah, James, I have misjudged you, I fear.

3 thoughts on “WSJ’s James Taranto Flunks His Ethics Test

  1. I have to say I am getting pretty sick of the morons who are taking the poor Missoula community theater to task. EVER SEEN A GILBERT & SULLIVAN SHOW? EVER SEEN “THE MIKADO?” UNDERSTAND WHAT SATIRE IS?

    Leave Missoula alone and let art be art. W.S. Gilbert did not advocate beheading anyone: it was comedy, it was satire. And if the “intelligentsia” and others don’t get it, too bad for them.

    KNOW YOUR SOURCES. DO YOUR RESEARCH. And realize that a community theater production of “The Mikado” should not be pilloried for a time-honored update of the immortal W.S. Gilbert’s satiric lyrics.

    PUT IT TO BED. GROW UP. THERE ARE MORE IMPORTANT ISSUES TO ADDRESS.

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