How To Read Code Words in the Dallas News

The headline and story are ho-hum predictable (“PAC created in hopes of replacing DISD trustees”). I mean, the teachers unions, big surprise. What is interesting is reporter Tawnell D. Hobbs’s use of language. For instance:

“Some community members criticized the board for not firing DISD Superintendent Michael Hinojosa…”

and

“Also, the majority of trustees were highly criticized by community members…”

“Community members” must be a specific category different than “citizens” or even “city residents.” In recent usage, black politicians use it to refer at times to their constituents. But a reporter doesn’t have constituents. So maybe she means “the black community.”  But it can’t mean that because I doubt the reporter has polling data to show that the entire black community agrees with the assertions being made by the “community members” referred to. So does it mean only some blacks? But then, which blacks? Is it more than one? Is it two? Is it three? Or does it refer to some other group?  Perhaps an editor of the Dallas Morning News would care to elucidate on whom this reporter is reporting.

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