Thursday, August 1, 2013

Fox vs. NBC

I know, I know, it comes as no surprise to any of you that Fox News and NBC News have a slightly different slant to their reporting. But this one amused me. Fox News says (this is currently the number one trending article on their site):

Archeologists conducting excavations at the site of a church in Turkey have unearthed a stone chest containing a relic that may be part of the cross on which Jesus was crucified. 

While NBC News says:

Turkish archaeologists say they have found a stone chest in a 1,350-year-old church that appears to contain a relic venerated as a piece of Jesus' cross. (emphasis added)

The NBC News article goes on to point out that there were plenty of "cross" relics floating around the ancient world. Sure, the relic could be a part of the cross on which Jesus was supposedly crucified, but the odds are against it. As far as I can tell, the archaeologists are not actually claiming this fragment might really be from Jesus' cross, as the Fox News article implies, though it's admittedly hard to be sure without further information. They are quoted as saying simply: “We have found a holy thing in a chest. It is a piece of a cross."

I'll add that I can't find a real quote from the archaeologists anywhere. Here's another article from the Hurriyet Daily News which NBC apparently based their story on, with an odd insertion in the quote from the archaeologist:

“We have found a holy thing in a chest. It is a piece of a cross, and we think it was [part of the cross on which Jesus was crucified]. This stone chest is very important to us. It has a history and is the most important artifact we have unearthed so far."

But what did the archaeologist actually say? The insertion of [part of the cross on which Jesus was crucified] is clearly not the original quote. Did the archaeologist actually imply they thought this was really part of Jesus' cross, or was that implication added by the journalist? Unless there is something very special about this stone chest (like it melts faces when it's opened), I find it hard to believe any serious archaeologist would suggest a wood fragment was part of Jesus' actual cross without much more data.

No comments:

Post a Comment