Trustworthy and Authoritative Writing

An example of a trustworthy but not authoritative article is Nicholas Kristoff’s Opinion contribution, “Are Your Sperm in Trouble?” Because Kristoff usually writes about political happenings in Washington DC, male reproductive health seems to be outside of the confines of his forte. I trust that what he is writing is accurate but it is solely based on external facts and studies. This form of writing is not Kristoff’s expertise or primary focus as a writer, which is why he appears less authoritative in this article than he does in “Dangerous Times for Trump and the Nation,” for example. He appears trustworthy in his article about male reproductive health as he does not simply throw out ideas and make surmises without crediting outside studies. Yet this need to rely on external information is the reason why he does not appear authoritative.

By contrast, an article that is written in an authoritative but untrustworthy manner is Daniel Sokatch’s New York Times piece, “Congress’s Un-American, Bad-for-Israel Agenda.” Daniel Sokatch is the chief executive of the New Israel Fund. This organization has been deemed as controversial given its willingness to fund organizations supporting the BDS movement. Sokatch’s article discusses a gag-bill in the US Congress which penalizes people for opposing the BDS movement. I understand and agree with his reasoning for opposing this bill, but he does not appear to be very trustworthy in the article. As someone who is largely criticized for internally supporting the BDS movement, and continues to deny this sentiment, it seems unfitting that he would choose to write about this specific gag-bill. I wish he chose to write about a bill that would better serve our congresses relationship with Israel and the BDS movement. Instead, he just shuts one idea down without presenting another option in a meaningful way.

Leave a Reply