The Capstone Report, which ordinarily has stellar reporting, made an error last week. Without further substantiating the story, the publication asked whether or not Midwestern Seminary President, Jason Allen, had lobbied the governor of Missouri for additional refugee settlements. Indeed, it’s something Allen would certainly do (he’s on record in this regard), but the specific account reported by Capstone Report was inaccurate.
Pulpit & Pen received the same email as Capstone Report and chose not to pursue the story further without substantiation.
Our lead correspondent, Seth Dunn, responded accordingly…
This was prior to Capstone Reporting their story. After it was determined that Allen did not speak to the governor about refugee resettlement, Capstone Report retracted their story and apologized.
In this case, the Capstone publication did what was responsible; they retracted wrong information in a way that was as public as they first published it and then apologized. Good on them.
The outrage was much ado about nothing, considering what Capstone Reported is within the character and belief of Jason Allen to do. It’s not like they reported something salacious about his character or slanderous to his reputation. Nonetheless, their reporting was inaccurate and they corrected it accordingly.
Over the weekend, Capstone Report’s error and subsequent reporting has been used repeatedly to attack alternative Christian media. As Reformation Charlotte first reported, Jason Allen took to a blog to accuse alternative Christian media of being terrorists.
The article, titled Denominational Discourse & the Future of the SBC, begins by talking about how the balance-of-power during the Cold War between the United States and the Soviet Union assured that a war would not break out due to the doctrine of mutually-assured destruction. He then goes on to explain how during the age of terrorism, the doctrine of mutually-assured destruction no longer applies. This is because terrorists do not fear their own destruction as they have nothing to lose. On the other hand, established, civil nations do, therefore, find it difficult to respond to terrorist acts.
Allen writes, “With the arrival of the internet and, in particular, blogging and social media, a similar scenario has developed in the online world. There’s an imbalance of loss when public accusations are made. The one who leads a public ministry has everything to lose, while an anonymous blogger has nothing to lose.
This new reality is causing chaos in the Southern Baptist Convention. False accusations are circulated online daily. Ironically, some of these instigators aren’t even Southern Baptist. Nonetheless, they malign SBC ministries and sully the reputations of those who lead them. And, for Southern Baptists, our cooperative work is being threatened.”
Pulpit & Pen is not aware of any ‘anonymous’ discernment-focused blogs except for Churchwatch Central, which is anonymous because they are in the backyard of Hillsong Australia and suffer under threats of intimidation. This website’s information is available by clicking “about us,” Reformation Charlotte’s publisher is Jeff Maples, Capstone Report is Alan Atchinson, and so on.
We do – for the sake of record – seek to threaten the cooperative work of Southern Baptist entity heads who seek to drive the convention as far to the left as possible without anyone noticing. We pray it’s disrupted even more.
For those who are in the business of printing information that denominational-controlled media won’t publish, we should let Capstone’s mistake remind us that all it takes is for a single reporting error to gravely affect our reputation.
Thankfully for Pulpit & Pen, we don’t have any similar reporting mistakes.
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