Why wasn’t there a fuss when The New York Times published this cover photo of the Boston bomber?



The ongoing controversy over a cover story in Rolling Stone magazine (above) about Boston bomber Dzhokhar Tsarnaev (see HERE) is an odd one.

The magazine cover refers to Tsarnaev as “a monster.” Still,  lots of people are upset apparently because the photo makes the bomber look like a nice young kid.

But that’s exactly the point of the Rolling Stone story. It’s about a popular kid who became a monster.  That’s what it says right there on the cover.

I think what really happened here is that a few people made an Internet stink about the Rolling Stone cover, and then the matter snow-balled as it tapped into widespread disdain for popular media in general. Of course, it got downright ridiculous when right-wingers portrayed it as an indication of sympathy for terrorists on the part of the editors of Rolling Stone.

But a question arises: Why was there no big stink when The New York Times carried the same photo of Tsarnaev on its front page back in early May (see image at top)?

UPDATE: And then there’s this:


 UPDATE II: HERE‘s an especially dumb column about the Rolling Stone cover story.



  1. Robert

    The Rolling Stone does some really good investigative journalism. I think they’ve made some people in the other media outlets mad. People who’ve been called on the carpet so to say, for reporting biased opinion and blatant lies over facts. For instance, it was in The Rolling Stone that I read about a young Afghan boy that had been murdered by American troops and then his fingers were cut off for a trophy. After this murder happened, the Afghans rebels increased their shootings against the American troops.

    This administration tried to blame the increase in violence (only happening in Afghanistan) on some preacher in Florida who grilled the Muslim holy book. I said BS. If that was the reason, the entire middle east would have seen an increase in violent actions against American interest, but it only happened in Afghanistan. Even a well known liberal talk radio host was carrying the water for the Obama administrations lies, that didn’t want the truth to come out about what was behind the retaliatory shootings against American soldiers. I’ve since lost my respect for him (the radio talk show host who knew better). What I found amazing was that most American’s believed the official story, about the preacher being the reason for the increase in violence, when it was only happening in Afghanistan. Why are people so gullible. Especially after we’ve been lied to so much by the leadership of both parties.

    It’s that kind of journalism that places like CNN, MSNBC and Fox News don’t like. I wouldn’t be surprised to find out it’s factions within the MSM that are trying to destroy The Rolling Stone’s credibility. F word the MSM. PS – Matt Taibbi does some of the best stories on the crooks in the banking industry and is a regular columnist at The Rolling Stone.

  2. Chuck Sweeny

    It’s not the picture I care about. It’s the article, a typical liberal whine about how it’s America’s fault that he turned out to be a thug. Something Stan “Blame America First” Campbell could have written, probably better. If you think this is a conservative rant, I suggest finding Lawrence O’ Donnell’s blistering, devastating critique from his MSNBC program.,
    I think people are made at Rolling Stone is because it purports to be a glam-mag. In truth, it focuses on martinally talented “musicians” and its readers now are going on Social Security. LOL!

  3. Brian Opsahl

    Chuck…how is that a typical liberal whine…enlighten me as to what that means…?
    I’m liberal and don’t believe for one minute that it is somehow America’s fault. That’s a wide stroke your painting. Blame his freeking parents they raised him (or aparenty not) Right..!! I hate when you put everyone in the same basket..!!

  4. Chuck: Where did you get that crap about how the Rolling Stone article is “a typical liberal whine about how it’s America’s fault that he turned out to be a thug”?

    That sounds like a typical right-wing whine from someone who hasn’t even read the article.

    Check it out at this link and show me where the article is a typical liberal whine:


  5. Craig Knauss


    Tsarnaev is a religious fundamentalist. Religious fundamentalists are, by their very nature, extremely conservative, whether they are Muslim, Jewish, Christian, or whatever. America isn’t to blame, it’s religious fundamentalism.

  6. By the way, Chuck, nothing in Lawrence O’Donnell’s criticism of the Rolling Stone article argued that the piece whined about how it’s America’s fault the kid became a terrorist.

    Rather, O’Donnell complained that Janet Reitman focused too much on the bomber’s friends and their thoughts about the kid.

    So you shouldn’t use O’Donnell as a corroborator of your claim that the Rolling Stone article was an anti-American whine.

  7. Brian Opsahl

    Useing Chucks logic…then is Oklahoma city a conservative plot through Tim Mcvay or whatever his terrorist name was….

    Do you see how dumb your staement is…chuck..?

  8. Chuck: One more thing: Your claim that Rolling Stone “readers now are going on Social Security” is cute, but totally at odds with the facts of the matter.

    In truth, 49 percent of RS readers are between the ages of 18 and 34. Another 20.4 percent are between the ages of 35 and 44, while 19.3 percent are 45 to 54. Only 11.3 percent are 55 or older.

    Most RS readers own their own homes, and more than a third have annual household incomes of more than $100,000.

  9. Dan McCullough

    Chuck — I’m surprised that a professional writer such as yourself would use the (made up?) word “martinally” when I think you should use “marginally,” which I’m taking the liberty of assuming you really meant to use. Recently, I’ve noticed that more and more misspellings are getting through the articles in both the Rockford Register Star and the Freeport Journal Standard. Could it be that one of the cutbacks taking place at both papers is in the proofreading department since GateHouse has taken over? I hope this comment doesn’t upset you and/or the top editors too much. P.S. — I enjoy your papers’ republishing editorials from around the state: it has the advantage of bringing a new, possibly fresher point of view of things to us, the readers; and it relieves the Editorial Board of having to think as much as they used to. I hope you don’t consider my sarcastic criticism to be hitting too much below the belt!

  10. Dan McCullough: Picky, picky, picky!

    Chuck’s use of “martinally” rather than “marginally” quite obviously is a mere typing error. It has nothing to do with proofreaders or cutbacks at Gatehouse.

    The mistake was made in a comment on this blog and thus was not proofed.

    By the way, Dan, it’s highly unlikely that the “top editors” will become upset at your snarky criticism. I’m sure they have better things to do than read all the comments in this thread.

  11. Dan McCullough

    I’m sure you’re right, Pat! One of the better things they should be doing is proofing the papers themselves before they’re sent to press.

    Please give my regards to your younger relatives who were my students when I was their reading and spelling teacher at an area school.

  12. Dan McCullough

    I’m honing my snarkiness by reading these posts. You and Chuck (and other contributors) should be proud that you’re contributing to my continuing education, even though I’m retired. Thank you!

  13. Brian Opsahl


    These are blogs..and blogs are not an editorial page nor a place where you would expect to have absolute correctness in grammer and spelling. Its a place where guys like me can go and express my opinions and sometimes showoff my lousey high school education.

    When you read blogs you will see short cuts all the time like…omg,lol as examples.

    What’s the big deal Dan…?

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