BY NICO VREELAND
Here’s a quick weird thing. Martin Amis (60) and Joan Brady (70), a couple of old authors, somehow got in a spat about euthanasia, despite both supporting it.
It happened like this. Amis laid out his pro-euthanasia views—inspired by proximity to the ugly, protracted death of his stepfather—in an interview in the Sunday Times. Step two: the Times reported on its own interview here.
Then, Brady got in a snit and took Amis to task in the Guardian with this editorial, in which she says people should not be forcibly killed (that’s not what Amis said, but she linked to the Times‘s self-reportage, so presumably she didn’t read the actual interview).
The Guardian‘s book blog then simultaneously (check the timestamp) published this self-reportage of Brady’s editorial, in which they quote Brady saying she’s pro-euthanasia (which she didn’t say in the editorial) because of her proximity to the ugly, protracted death of her husband. Scoop!
Still with me? Once more, with alacrity: Amis says he’s pro-euthanasia in the Times, the Times quotes him in a filler piece about their own article, Brady reads the filler piece, rails against Amis in the Guardian, the Guardian runs filler piece about their own article, saying Brady is pro-euthanasia.
For those keeping score, that’s FOUR articles, ONE manufactured scandal, and ZERO stories of any substance whatsoever. [EDIT: OK, that’s not quite fair. The original interview was pretty good, and covered a lot more than this one euthanasia thing. But the Times tried to cancel that out by playing up a couple of lines for controversy’s sake.] Welcome to modern newspapership!
Nabokov would’ve loved this one.