The New York Times’ public editor Margaret Sullivan has rendered her verdict on the newspaper’s use of the term “no angel” to describe the 18-year-old unarmed black man killed by a white police officer in Ferguson, Missouri.
“Let’s get the obvious out of the way first: That choice of words was a regrettable mistake,” Sullivan wrote in her blog.
There was a large outcry over the Times’ description of Michael Brown as “no angel,” with some seeing it as an attempt to smear the name of a young man who was shot under questionable circumstances by a police officer on August 9. The officer, Darren Wilson, was also the subject of a Times profile that ran today. By contrast, he was described as “well-mannered, relatively soft-spoken, even bland.”