Rolling Stone magazine is under fire this week for its decision to put Boston Marathon bombing suspect Dzhokhar Tsarnaev on its cover.
The cover image - a picture that Tsarnaev took of himself and that graced the front page of the New York Times recently - is being criticized by some readers for portraying the alleged terrorist as a "rock star." The portrait has drawn comparisons to a previous Rolling Stone cover featuring late Doors singer Jim Morrison.
Some retail chains, including CVS, Walgreens and the Boston-based Roche Bros., have said they will not stock the issue out of respect for the victims. Three people were killed in the bombings and more than 250 others were injured.
The editors of Rolling Stone released a statement Wednesday addressing the backlash, and added it to the online version of the story. "The cover story we are publishing this week falls within the traditions of journalism and Rolling Stone's longstanding commitment to serious and thoughtful coverage," the statement reads. The fact that Dzhokhar Tsarnaev is young, and in the same age group as many of our readers, makes it all the more important for us to examine the complexities of this issue and gain a more complete understanding of how a tragedy like this happens."
The article offers details about Tsarnaev's life in the United States leading up to the Marathon bombings, painting a portrait of how a charming high school student turned to radical Islam.
Tsarnaev (whom the magazine refers to as "Jahar") once told a classmate he felt the 9/11 bombings may have been justified, according to the article.
What do you think of the cover?