My great Grandfather, William Freeland, owned the Taney County Republican when I was a child. He took over the paper after serving a couple of decades in the Indian service, was friends with Robert Niehardt (Black Elk Speaks).
As a boy, I remember he would be in his office, typing editorials. Sometimes his daughters, Maude Freeland (a journalist / photographer) and Frieda Freeland Ingenthron (an English teacher) guest-wrote the editorials, and when he passed away, the two daughters, their mother Minnie, and my father would write editorials in the office room of the house, tap tapping on several typewriters they owned, including the Oliver typewriter.
Brian Konradt has a "How To" posted by Yahoo on editorial writing:
Writing an editorial article may be one of the most satisfying forms of writing, especially for journalists trained to be objective at all costs. An editorial article can be about anything and from any standpoint. As long as you have an opinion and can support it with facts, you have the makings of an interesting piece.
Facts, opinion and writing skill are not enough for a good journalistic editorial. Newspapers and magazines have guidelines for word count, thesis resolution, etc.
You need to understand the opposition's standpoint. If you want to write a well formed, in depth editorial then you will need to know what the other side’s argument is. This means that you will need to take some time to research the opposing viewpoint and the facts that back it up.The claim from BAN is that 80% of electronics repair, reuse, and recycling exports are bad news. They have made the case by taking reporters to the end-points which clearly show poverty, pollution, and residue. I've devoted many posts to evaluating the question, does the shameful photo show 80%, or 20%, of the story? To evaluate this, you need to weigh all the photos and come up with real numbers.
Critics of used electronics (labelled "e-waste") exports have valid points, and the critics have had many positive effects on the trade. Unfortunately, like the wheat boycotts of the Soviet Union, the tourism boycott of Cuba, and the brief idea of a "coffee boycott" to help poor coffee bean pickers, the remedy is largely counterproductive. We did not trade with Communist countries because we liked their political systems, we traded because the outcome of trade would be better than the outcome of a boycott.
2010 was the year that WR3A's silent refurbishing factory members had made major strides (ISO 14001, glass-to-glass recycling). They had attempted to avoid buying from exporters who did not screen their shipments, but saw the other recyclers destroying all "intact units". California regulators repeatedly cited political exposure to anti-export organizations when asked to reform SB20, and the anti exporters have been timid at best in defending legitimate reuse.
In 2010, reckless accusations made by environmental groups to foreign environmental authorities resulted in lost import permits and rejected (uninspected) loads. Non-boycotters were all accused of putting toxic waste in their containers, and the return of unopened containers was offered as proof of guilt.
As 2010 ends, there is little to show for the editorials or blogs defending these Techs of Color. It is the year that 1) their factories were described as primitive wire burning, 2) their participants who participated (by skype) in meetings with environmentalists received letters 10 days later to pull their 5 year old import permits, 3) the only USA recycling stripping CRTs to bare tubes had a container reported to Indonesia and to USA EPA, accusing them of being a waste importer.
The message sent to our friends overseas: it does not matter if you are a more capable refurbisher. It does not matter if you are taking back items you originally assembled or manufactured. It does not matter if your purchase order rejects junk along for the ride. It doesn't matter if you properly recycle 100% of non-working parts or breakage. It does not matter if you fulfill every expectation. All that matters is your national origin, and because of your passport ID, no matter what you do, you are a poisonous polluter.
"I buy new gadgets because I'm rich. You sell used working gadgets to poor people. Shame on you."
In the end, if Basel Action Network wants to lighten up on Techs of Color, on factories like PT Imtech, and others, I'll be the first to applaud, but they cannot do it as a favor to me. They should do so because it's the right thing to do, and because if they don't, the story is going to get far worse. I am currently collecting hundreds of photos of the homes and families of the Techs of Color for a book I am writing. It will be too late to use this to defend them, but the bookend on the environmentalists crusade against the internet, crusade against Annex IX of the Basel Convention, slander and libel against the best embers of the developing world, is certainly understood by college students in their 20s. The poisonous fruits of the decade of crusade against ill-defined "waste", the toxic plumes from "non-toxic" tin solder mines, the blood of coral reefs, the internet cafe containers seized by political censors, these cannot be buried by the good intentions of the accidental racists.
If they want to reform SB20, they need to do it because reuse is good and because "no intact unit" policies promoted in their names are wrong, not because we have a uniform approach to the problem, and not to earn applause from one another. My flaws are postulated, obvious, and duly noted. Nevertheless they are promoting gross injustice in the name of environmentalism, against real human beings. I consider my failures daily. Like Eminem, who now is the age David Bowie was when I discovered 5 Years...
Merry Christmas. Here are the Opening Lyrics to Eminem's 8 Mile
Why do I put up this fight, why do I still write
Sometimes it's hard enough just dealin with real life
Sometimes I wanna jump on stage and just kill mics
And show these people what my level of skill's like
But I'm still white, sometimes I just hate life
Somethin ain't right, hit the brake lights
Case of the stage fright, drawin a blank like
Da-duh-duh-da-da, it ain't my fault
Great then I falls, my insides crawl
and I clam up (wham) I just slam shut
I just can't do it, my whole manhood's
just been stripped, I have just been vicked
So I must then get off the bus then split
Man f**k this sh*t yo, I'm goin the f**k home
World on my shoulders as I run back to this 8 Mile Road