Headline Writing: The Word “Some” Lets You Claim Almost Anything

When a D.C. school closed for renovations, parents faced a  troubling choice

The investigation of Jared Kushner fits a very troubling pattern

A troubling health care bill rushes forward in secret
As for the dictionary definition of news—”a report of recent events”—here are the page one headlines in today’s Washington Post:

N. Korea launch challenges Trump

Amid parades, health-care queries

Dam may muddy plan to clean up Chesapeake

Political backlash looms ahead of Putin meeting

Out of our comfort zone: Neighborhoods’ old, often deadly rivalry clouds D.C. school renovation plan
Page one Post stories today are troubling, challenging, muddy, looming, and cloudy. For any reports on recent events, go to the sports section.


  1. In defense of Washington Post headline writers, the five heds in the post above appeared on July 5, the day after the fourth. On July 6, the Post’s page one headlines were newsier:

    Haley hits China and Russia at U.N.
    Nations eye trade deals, with or without Trump
    Amid opioid crisis, a door to hope
    Parolee’s anger at police may have led to shooting
    At least 44 states deny full data to voting panel


    Dear Jack,

    It forever irks me when on the reporter’s/editor’s side when I see “critics say” – – – and then a critical and usually anonymous line that says something like, “a spheroid Earth is unproven false pseudoscience and everybody knows if it were round you’d fall off.”

    Seems if you are going to offer a critical view, “critics say” is not nearly enough sourcing.


  3. Some Trump supporters thought NPR tweeted
    ‘propaganda.’ It was the Declaration of Independence.

    —7/5 headline on washingtonpost.com

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