letter in response to bel mooneys newspaper article on pornography
English coursework 2013 year 10 Letter in response to article on pornography published 1st March, Daily Mail. Dear Mrs Bel Mooney, I am writing in response to your article published in the Daily Mail on March 1st 2013, about online pornography. My concerns about the quality of Journalism in this article has prompted me to write and express these concerns; namely that your writing is over-opinionated, misleading and actually quite irresponsible. Although persuasive in some ways your article contains many flaws. In your opening remarks you try to force the reader into sympathizing with your point of view, but your methods are ransparent.
Your point of view is continuously expressed throughout the article, often being presented as fact rather than opinion. For example, “successive governments have ducked dealing with the pernicious effects of pornography’, is written with much conviction, but very little substance. As a whole the article contains very few facts about the effects of pornography on teenagers. Furthermore, many of your Judgements are irrelevant, particularly when you attack prominent political fgures such as David Cameron. You attack David Cameron as though he has ower enough to ban pornography overnight, which is irrational.
The government have far more important issues to consider and so although they may not be able to “sleep at night”, any sleepless nights will be filled with national crisis’ in comparison to the so called “horrifying flood or internet pornography that poisons, pollutes and corrupts impressionable young minds”. Unfortunately David Cameron doesn’t have the power to ban pornography outside of the I-JK let alone in the I-JK overnight. Essentially, if you try and ban pornography it will only find another illegal route to the web. Your assertive style is most persuasive in the final section of the article.
For instance, you offer a warning saying “the whole fabric of civilized people” will fall apart. This is also used as a shock factor. In general, you use factual information to shock and above all draw attention to the issues that you raise, for example, “the average age at which children are exposed to such horrific material is six”. You use the word “horrific” to illustrate your view on the matter but the fact is not clear. The horrific material you refer to could be anything, after this it can be seen that your use of actual information is not correct and consequently irresponsible.
Likewise this factual information and others in the article are not supported by any references to credible sources thus we can conclude that the facts cannot be trusted. As well as using unreliable facts, you attempt to make yourself credible, making reference to a suggest that experienced professionals take this issue seriously. However this letter you mention was only signed by 63 people. You also do not merely refer to the letter but you constantly refer to yourself and your own experience of attempting to ighlight the problem of pornography in young minds.
This suggests that your article is more about self promotion at the extreme expense of quality and truthful journalism. Your use of emotive language in this article is shocking. You adopt an extremely conversational tone at the start of the article by asking questions that make the reader really think. This helps the reader feel like they have a personal relationship with you, making you seem appealing. Once the reader finds you appealing, they are sympathetic with your views and so you begin to establish emotive language.
Phrases such as “a nightmare” and “a new dark and malign pornography’ are chosen in particular to hassle and enrage the reader. The most outrageous remark you make is the one that refers to the Holocaust. Although many of your arguments may have some truth in them, this is taking it a step too far. The Holocaust was a terrible historic event in which millions died. Pornography is hardly “on a scale of almost Holocaust proportions”. I find it embarrassing that a Journalist could write such a thing. I have not written this letter to tell you that your point of iew is wrong, but to tell you that your Journalism is of poor quality.
Many of your points are true but are irresponsibly put and with no credible facts to back them up. You have also made the mistake of only putting your own opinion in there as there are no quotes from anyone with similar or different views on the matter. I am not criticizing your point of view; however I do disagree with the standard of Journalism displayed in this article. The article is misleading, unhelpful and the opinionated style of Journalism is irresponsible and self indulging. Yours Sincerely Miss Smith