In the largely unsurprising (month-old) news about the suicide rate among Alaska Natives, this part grabbed me in particular:
What's happening? State and tribal officials said Natives battle the same basic afflictions they faced two decades ago, with new factors thrown in, such as methamphetamine.The reason it grabbed my attention is that the connection between meth and suicide is not as immediately obvious to me as, say, alcohol and suicide or depression and suicide. In fact, in the several presentations I've attended and reported on about meth, I can't recall suicide being discussed.
So I was intrigued by the claim by "state and tribal officials" that meth was linked to a sustained high suicide rate and read on to find out what the connection was. And I read on. And on. And on. And I reached the end of the article without another mention of meth.
Given how much meth education there is in Bush Alaska right now and how much community leaders are trying to prevent the stuff from ever arriving here, this is a claim that is likely to roil the waters and make people agitated. And instead of substantiating the claim - or even attributing the claim directly to someone - Alex deMarban leaves it hanging all the way to the end. How was this not caught before publication?