Dumbest news pic of the decade

Dumbest news pic of the decade


norman lebrecht

September 24, 2015

Sending a message of good wishes to Jewish viewers for the fast of Yom Kippur this week, Chicago station WGNNews posted this image behind the newsreader.

jude badge

It’s the badge that Jews were forced to wear in Nazi Germany and German-occupied countries, prior to their deportation to the death camps.

The station said later it ‘failed to recognize that the image was an offensive Nazi symbol.’

Do be careful where you get your news.

Here’s an apology from the station’s general manager and news director. They don’t seem much the wiser.


  • Fred says:

    the childification and studipdification of society…….and it is going fast

  • Fred Obelisk says:

    Perhaps society is evolving into what it needs to be, to survive, and we are all but pleasant memories (at least to ourselves).

  • Greg Hlatky says:

    Apart from its legendarily high standards (accounting for its legendarily high self-regard), journalism employs layers of editors and fact-checkers to make sure every detail is correct.

  • Yakov says:

    This sort of thing doesn’t surprise me at all, although it should. When one sees and experiences on a daily basis the level of stupidity and total ignorance of what they call “educated people” in the United States, something like this is predictable. I have met “journalists” there who cover politics and general subjects who don’t even know how to find Europe on a map, who I had to remind what the Second World War was all about and who was involved and what happened, who only vaguely knew about the Holocaust, but not what actually transpired, who didn’t know what language is spoken in the Netherlands, or in Sweden, who thought that the U.S. dollar was widely used in Europe, etc. This particular story here is an unfortunate symptom of the same mass stupidity that one finds there. And then, there is Donald Trump…

    • Mark Henriksen says:

      Is this a music new site or a bully pulpit?

      • Hildegard says:

        The only reason for these far too many stupid things is extreme ignorance and a very bad education system, but when it is already so visible at the top, of those who are put in charge to inform and report and teach others, then it really is total rot and total decay. Somebody mentioned Donald Trump, but he is only another symbol of the total rot and decay over there, but aiming to be at the very very top. What can the world expect when ignorance and stupidity has reached the summits of the society? It is a real tragedy there.

        • milka says:

          Your last sentence on ignorance and stupidity brings up the thought as to where
          World War 1 and World War 2 was fought and who helped save europe , the US
          may have a Donald Trump but europe gave birth to Hitler , Stalin and a slew of others
          be careful when you throw stones …………..

          • George says:

            Making analogies between Hitler, Stalin and the fact that the US was one of the liberators of Europe after World War 2 in no way has anything to do with the stupidity that one finds in the US today, absolutely nothing. It does not exonerate ignorant politicians, ignorant citizens and ignorance in general. Just because the US was part of the liberating forces in 1945 does not excuse Donald Trump or any other person. The Second World War ended 70 years ago! At what point do you stop using this lame excuse, after 72 years, 75 years, 80 years, or maybe 100 years?

  • Marg says:

    I find it very scary that in the U.S. there are educated people who do not instantly recognise the yellow,star for what it is. Very scary

    • William Safford says:

      I suspect that there are many, many Americans who will never meet anyone Jewish in their lifetimes.

      But that should not be the case for anyone who lives in or near Chicago, certainly not for journalists at a TV station.

      And if the broadcast wished people a “Happy Yom Kippur,” as the linked article suggests, that’s another error — a well-meaning one, but an error nonetheless. For those who don’t know, the closest Christian equivalent I can come up with in terms of inappropriateness would be to wish someone a “Happy Good Friday.”

  • V.Lind says:

    For all its sins, the station did not wish a “Happy” Yom Kippur — they wished those involved in it well. I think it is forgiveable that some people might not know that the usual greeting is “Easy fast.” The ignorance is with the visual. (The striped background just made it all the more egregious).

  • milka says:

    George is absolutely correct the past does not exonerate the present but what I notice
    is that when Trump speaks people either agree or laugh at him and on he goes, quite
    different from the thousands of dead innocents in the Ukraine , or changing laws at the
    last minute to stem the tide of the hordes of freedom seekers who pick
    countries with the best benefits .The point I was making to Hildegard, don’t throw rocks at
    anyone unless your back yard is as clean as a whistle . There are indeed stupid people
    in the US as there are stupid people in europe.

  • Dave T says:

    Seeing as the Jews do control the media it’s puzzling that this graphic was shown. Maybe there was an ulterior motive??

  • Jevgeniy says:

    I rarely feel this way, but I hope several people lost their jobs for this inanity.

  • Marcel Lockhart says:

    How on earth is this stupid, but irrelevant mistake relevant to a blog dedicated to classical music and related cultures?