Was the Times' Alessandra Stanley Too Hard on Farrah Fawcett?
We've received many emails tonight from readers taking issue with an Alessandra Stanley piece in the Times on Farrah Fawcett. Maybe it's the lede—"She really tried. And for a sex symbol that alone can be like an accomplishment."
And perhaps the close: "Not all of her performances will stand the test of time, but what is worth remembering is how hard Farrah Fawcett tried."
There's that word again—"Tried."
Apparently some people interpreted that as an insult and lost sight of the rest of the piece, because overall we thought that the piece was, well, "fair and balanced." One thing to keep in mind, something apparently lost on those who wrote in to take issue, was that this was not Farrah Fawcett's New York Times obituary. Her obit is here. This was an analysis of her career, or as the Times puts it, "An Appraisal," and was therefore meant to be open to criticism.
But for the most part, Stanley's analysis on Fawcett's life and career leaned positive. Whether or not the Times should have waited a day to run anything containing criticism of a recently-deceased star (What's the protocol on this?) is open to debate, but at that point it's lost some of its newsworthiness. Regardless, read Stanley's piece and make your own judgment.