Saturday, August 28, 2004

Follow-Up on Stem-cell Lab Blast

Yesterday, I posted a blurb about a bomb that was exploded at a stem-cell research lab in Watertown, MA.  Yesterday and today, I mentioned it to a few people; they hadn't heard about it.  So today, I searched Google and the New York Times.  Google finds the original report  on Reuters (a British news service) but nothing else.  There is one article in the Boston Herald. 

I went to the Amaranth Bio website, and there is no mention there, either.  The reports on the Amaranth site mention their stem cell research, but it appears that they do not use embryonic stem cells, which, of course, are the controversial kind of stem cell. 

Today, on the front page of the New York Times web edition, there is a report about two men arrested for a suspected bomb plot.  They did not actually have any explosives.  The article was syndicated over AP and Reuters, and appears in the Washington Post. 

What is it about our press corps, that a mere plot is publicized widely -- even though the alleged conspirators did not actually have a bomb -- while an actual explosion is barely mentioned?  Why is it that an explosion in the United States of America would only be published by a British news organization?

In fact, other that the original Reuters report, I could find only four other mentions.  Yahoo News echoes the Reuters story.  One is on a blog, The Talent Show.  The other two are on websites: The Terrorism Research Center, and Biospace.  Like the Corpus Callosum, The Talent Show expresses wonder at the relative obscurity of the Watertown bomb story:

This happened yesterday, yet it's barely being reported anywhere. Considering what a big deal people have been making out of stem cell research lately, I'd think a minor act of terrorism against a stem cell lab would be somewhat newsworthy. I guess it probably wouldn't look too good to point out that the president is on the same side of a major issue as thugs who want to blow people up.

How are we supposed to trust the media, when plots are reported, but actual terrorist bombings are not?