Fun With Headlines: Misstating Facts

Before addressing the story itself, consider how various news agencies are reporting on the ruling from the District Court of Cologne.

German court: Circumcision on Jewish boys assault (USA Today)

German court rules that circumcision is illegal (Haaretz)

German court: Circumcision on boys an assault (

German court rules religious circumcision of minors is ‘assault’ (Global Post)

The problem here is the challenge it presents. Many people will do nothing more than scan the headlines and form an opinion. That is dangerous when the headline is an inaccurate or incomplete summary of a story. Brevity is important, and a fundamental fact of headline writing. But clarity should not be sacrificed. The Global Post and the headlines get closest to the truth. That is commendable.

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