Right-wingers have held for some time that The New York Times hates real Americans. But here's some proof that the paper hates real large ones: On Aug. 11, the paper's Style section ran a sneering piece by Cintra Wilson that questioned why the "dowdy" JCPenney would dare open a store in Midtown Manhattan. Here, it's worth quoting from the piece at length: "JCPenney has always trafficked in knockoffs that aren't quite up to Canal Street's illegal standards. It was never 'Get the look for less' so much as 'Get something vaguely shaped like the designer thing you want, but cut much more conservatively, made in all-petroleum materials, and with a too-similar wannabe logo that announces your inferiority to evil classmates as surely as if you were cursed to be followed around by a tuba section.' " As a coup de grace, Wilson noted that she had a hard time finding a size 2 on the racks, though there were abundant 10, 12 and 16s. Wilson's story got such a strong negative reaction that the Times' public editor, Clark Hoyt, felt compelled to respond yesterday, citing an official apology from Wilson and feedback from executive editor Bill Keller, who said he wished the paper never ran the story. The Times, however, had better hope JCPenney didn't read yesterday's Week in Review section. Right after Hoyt's column, an op-ed by Porochista Khapour about Thirtysomething contrasted the pleated pants and Ivy League sweatshirts the characters sported on the show to what her Iranian parents wore. "My parents," she writes, "overdressed, fallen aristocrats still holding on to their ’70s-best, spiked with ever more sore-thumbish Kmart and JCPenney additions, totally fell short."
—Posted by Todd Wasserman