Back in October, Katia wondered, “Did the New York Times intentionally construct a brilliant juxtaposition of wealth and poverty on its front page this morning?” (referring to an above-the-fold story about people passing on essential medications “in sour economy,” and a below-the-fold piece about a socialite with terminal cancer whose family “booked her a suite on the eighth floor” of her favorite hotel so that “At The End, [She Might Enjoy] All The Comforts Of The Carlyle.”)

Looking at today’s Times, I have to ask: Another purposefully jarring juxtaposition on the front page? Or, happenstance?

Above the fold: “Afghan Girls, Scarred by Acid, Defy Terror, Embracing School

Below the fold: “Love the Long Eyelashes. Who’s Your Doctor?

(And the online juxtaposition? On the Times’ home page, “Love The Long Eyelashes” currently sits directly above “Afghan Girls, Scarred by Acid…”)

Let’s compare ledes:

One morning two months ago, Shamsia Husseini and her sister were walking through the muddy streets to the local girls school when a man pulled alongside them on a motorcycle and posed what seemed like an ordinary question.


“Are you going to school?”

Then the man pulled Shamsia’s burqa from her head and sprayed her face with burning acid. Scars, jagged and discolored, now spread across Shamsia’s eyelids and most of her left cheek. These days, her vision goes blurry, making it hard for her to read.

But if the acid attack against Shamsia and 14 others — students and teachers — was meant to terrorize the girls into staying home, it appears to have completely failed.

And;

First it was frozen foreheads. Now it’s Betty Boop eyelashes.


Allergan, the company that [brought us] Botox…plans to introduce Latisee, the first federally approved prescription drug for growing longer, lusher lashes….David E. I. Pyott, Allergan’s chief executive…suggested that many women would not blink at spending $120 for a one-month three-milliliter supply of the drug.

Let’s belabor the point and compare kickers as well.

After class, Shamsia blended in with the other girls, standing around, laughing and joking. She seemed un-self-conscious about her disfigurement, until she began to recount her ordeal.


“The people who did this,” she said, “do not feel the pain of others.”

And:

Some doctors, meanwhile, are wondering whether Latisse could be used on hair elsewhere….”For a lot of women, the eyebrow is every bit as important as the eyelash,” [said Mr. Pyott, the CEO of Allergen].

Liz Cox Barrett is a writer at CJR.