The Blog

Civility Quiz

5:40 PM, Nov 2, 2009 • By MARY KATHARINE HAM
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Which is more uncivil and damaging to the very fabric of the Republic?

Michelle Malkin's politely worded e-mail of inquiry to a pro-Obama activist, which warranted A-1 hand-wringing from the Washington Post?

Or, a newsroom environment where reporters call their editors [expletives that are too dirty to even shorten or suggest on a family blog such as this one] and their editors proceed to tackle them and punch them.

Now, I am someone who believes American newsrooms might actually be better off if they were more often populated by 70-year-old Marines who have thrown and taken a few punches in their lives than exclusively populated by farmers' market-shopping, foodie wunderkind health-bloggers, so I won't judge them too much for one lil' ol' punch. (Although, I will flag the reason for coming to blows, which seems to have been that an old-school editor-Henry Allen- was "seething over the lost art of long-form journalism." Gag.)

But the real problem is the civility police at the Post, who have been fretting over the rather mild protesting of conservatives all year, have no editor for the Motes and Beams Desk. Maybe if they did, he could add this quiz to the Kids Post this week.