Monday, May 07, 2012

Dogmatic mutterings of the press

I love the Herald Sun and it loves me, as can be seen by all the recipes it gives me for foods I don't eat from cooking shows I don't watch, and the articles it shows me about people I neither know nor care about doing things I have never heard about before with other people I know even less about. Since I don't care much what happens in the rest of the world anyway, it really is the paper for me.

But the Herald Sun also loves dogs, as can be seen on about page five or so, even third day, give or take. There was the article about the labrador fetching beer from the fridge for its owner (they showed a little picture of the dog doing just that), and then there was the snippet they ran about Australia's fattest dog (accompanied by lots of pictures of this fat dog). Fat dogs, as any good tabloid writer will be able to tell you, are even better and cuter than fat kids, because they allow you to use lines like 'canine obesity crisis sweeping this nation', and 'cries for help from Australia's fat dogs'. (Also, have you ever tried to photograph or pat a fat child? It's dangerous. Sometimes they even bite.) The Herald Sun even ran a follow up article on this corpulent canine several months after, talking about his journey back to good health ('before' and 'after' photos featuring prominently).

But all is not sweetness and light in the world of tabloid dogs, for the Herald Sun also really loves savage dogs, or at least loves the headlines they produce. They have photos for those ones too, so every time 'Killer dog on loose' or 'Pitbull off leash in children's playground' appears in their pages, there's a cute little picture of a snarling dog in studded collar that will pop up, probably on the front page.

To this day, though, the Herald Sun haven't - though I'm sure one day they'll find an excuse - run an article like the following:

... the incredibly cute puppy is a signed up member of Al Qaeda, and is evidence of the canine extremism crisis sweeping our nation... there have been calls for state government to outlaw canine terrorism, before too late...  evidence of 'evil dog' training camps in the Victorian countryside... etc etc

The horror! The horror! Only costing $1 every morning, seven days a week.

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