Daily Times Shows Bias For Ireton Yet Again
Once again, the Daily Times shows its true colors. In Sunday's DT, two stories (see Albero HERE, see Ireton HERE) show the tone we can expect from this year's Salisbury city elections. On one hand we have the implication that candidate (and SBYNews publisher) Joe Albero is a racist. On the other we see Ireton's erratic, grandstanding behavior explained away as being in the best interest of Salisbury.
Is Joe Albero a Racist?
The bottom line - NO!
Sunday's article on Albero was based on posts cherry-picked from Salisbury News (often out of context) and put up on a web site admittedly owned by Salisbury mayor Jim Ireton. When asked about the site Albero commented:
It's sad. Salisbury has so many problems. What is our mayor doing? He's playing petty politics rather than trying to make Salisbury a better place to live and work in. This is the second time that the Daily Times has been directly involved in a spoof involving Jim Ireton. First there was the "phone spoof", which resulted in the firing of two Daily Times employees. Now we have the "web site spoof".
I have faith in the citizens of Salisbury. If they bother to look at these things objectively they will quickly realize that this is smoke and mirrors on the part of Jimmy and his pals at the DT. I'm just sorry that a decent reporter like Jeremy Cox has been drawn into it. Unfortunately for the people of Salisbury, when you're Jim Ireton and you don't have a record to run on, this is what you do.... you crawl into the gutter.
We acknowledge that the DT will only provide reporter Jeremy Cox with a certain number of column inches; however, if Cox had been able to print more of the research that (we know) he gathered, the implication would be even more laughable. Last week Cox requested an interview with Albero regarding this article. In his request, Cox cited three posts on Salisbury News that he wanted to specifically discuss:
As Cox acknowleges, most of the content posted on Salisbury News is excerpted from other sources. This article, including its title, is no exception. We recommend that you read the entire article in its original form.
Let's start with its author, Pastor Ben Kinchlow. Cox's piece portrays him as "an African-American columnist and former co-host of the Christian Broadcasting Network’s “The 700 Club.” That's accurate ... as far as it goes. Pastor Kinchlow has also hosted shows on TBN (the Trinity Broadcasting Network), is a well known author, successful businessman, and well regarded by tens of millions of evangelical Christians in this country and probably hundreds of millions around the world. Oh yes, he also happens to be African-American.
If you read the entire article, you will see that it poses some rather simple questions: given that African-Amerians are among the most faithful of our citizens, and given Biblical teaching on certain moral issues, and given the Democrat party's stance on these issues ...
"In light of all the above statistics and more, we are forced to address these two questions: 1) Why the dichotomy of supporting, almost blindly, a party that stands in direct contradiction to what they hold as moral truth? And 2) since blacks are demonstrably the most religious of all voters, are they hypocrites or are they stupid?"
The questions are simple. Maybe the answers are a little more complicated. However, the questions certainly aren't racist. I'm surprised that Albero and Kinchlow aren't also being accused of being homophobes (a term I personally dislike because of its inaccuracy, but I'll stick to conventional usage).
While Cox wanted to discuss this article with Albero, no specific mention is made of it in his article. Instead, we read a non-specific reference to "Daily Times analysis found a half-dozen posts in 2012 alone that included the term 'black mobs' in the headline or body." Small wonder. I doubt that Cox's editors would publish an article that included mention of a second post like the one above.
"A Censored Race War", the article in question, was excerpted from National Review Online and was originally published as one of the author's syndicated newspaper columns. Again, we recommend that you read the ENTIRE article as originally published.
This piece was authored by Dr. Thomas Sowell. Dr. Sowell is a respected economist, the author of over 30 books, a syndicated columnist, and a renowned social and political philospher. Oh yea, like Pastor Kinchlow, Dr. Sowell is also African-American.
I can understand why the editors of the Daily Times wouldn't want specific mention of Sowell in this context. Born in the segregated South and raised in North Carolina and Harlem, Sowell dropped out of high school and served his country as a Marine in the Korean War. After his service, Sowell went on to earn degrees from Harvard, Columbia, and the University of Chicago. He has served on the faculties of Cornell and UCLA and currently serves as a Senior Fellow at the Hoover Institution at Stanford University. Perhaps this is why specific mention of this piece is dropped and instead allusion is made to "Daily Times analysis"?
The third piece which Cox specifically asked about was Albero's "pre-announcement". That's pretty innocuous. However, Cox was concerned about some comments which appeared on that post. They're valid questions. Some commenter did make a reference to "black and stupid voters". I will admit that I probably would not have approved such a comment myself. However, you need to take a few things into account: first, Albero doesn't moderate all of the comments; second, Albero doesn't like censoring comments unless the commenter uses foul language or is overtly racist; and third, if you read the entire thread of comments it's pretty clear that the commenter is not calling African-Americans stupid. He (or she?) is saying that the people who voted for President Obama were African-American or stupid. Given the overwhelming share of the African-American vote which Obama (and most Democrat candidates) received it's tough to argue that side of the statement. While I personally know quite a few people of above average intelligence who voted for the President, and aren't black, it's easy to be flippant about their intelligence given my (and many other conservative's) views on President Obama's policies. (and NO, that comment wasn't mine). But again, Albero shouldn't be responsible for every view proffered by his readers and should be commend for taking a liberal view on censorship.
A Diversity of Views
It should also be noted that, in addition to original material, Albero posts from a diversity of sources. As conservative as World Net Daily might be, it is balanced out by posts from left of center sites such as MSNBC and ProPublica. As Cox notes in his article, Albero runs every press release submitted to him from Maryland Gov. Martin O'Malley (hardly a promoter of conservative ideas, values, or policies).
The thing I find most interesting about this article, though, are the quotes from area residents. Who is calling Albero a racist? Ireton and councilwoman Shanie Shields. Readers should remember that Ireton has a history of playing the race card. He has accused council members of being racist because they disagreed with him on a policy matter (The Bricks). Shields concurred with Ireton at that time and threatened to "take it to the streets" if necessary. Since Albero has announced his candidacy, Ireton has been calling Albero a racist to anyone that will listen. As for Shields, she should be equally ashamed:
Asked whether she agreed that Albero “sees color,” as Ireton charged, Shanie Shields, the City Council’s lone African-American representative, replied, “Of course. Read his stuff and you can pass good judgment on what he reports on.”
She hasn’t read it herself, she admitted, since Albero posted pictures of her former home in 2008 after she lost it to foreclosure.
How can you argue that Ireton is right when you admit that you haven't read anything on Salisbury News for almost five years?
NAACP President Mary Ashanti refused to "pass judgment" without context and a thorough examination of the facts. Ms. Ashanti and the NAACP should be commended for taking a reasoned and responsible stance. They may come back and decide that Albero is wrong. I'll disagree with them then. However, I will still respect the fact that they took a reasoned approach to responding to these charges rather than going off half-cocked like Shields. There's nothing half-cocked about Ireton, this is a calculated move to sow the seeds of racial division in order to survive an election.
I also found great
irony surprise that an African-American citizen was brave enough to go on the record in support of Albero, despite the fact that people like Ireton and his supporters will probably attack the man now that his name has been published in the newspaper. Mr. Neal should be commended for his courage.
Fair and Balanced?
Overall, Cox wrote an accurate piece. I will not say that it is fair, but it is accurate. You can even call it "balanced" in a twisted way. What's the difference? Look at Cox's mention of "hate crime" statistics. Rarely is black-on-white crime classified as a "hate crime". In addition, there was no mention in Sowell's article of hate crimePMs. Instead the focus was on the media's (and liberal establishment's) reluctance to openly discuss black-on-white crime because it offended their skewed world view and political agenda. Cox doesn't cite other specific articles, so I can't comment on the result of the DT's "analysis".
I'm quite sure that Ireton's supporters will disparage Cox for being accurate rather than simply re-printing, 100%, the spoon-fed meme Ireton tried to sell him. Some of Albero's supporters won't be happy with the article because of its tone and implications. Maybe that was the "balance" Cox was striving for. Perhaps I would be a little more placated if Cox's article on Ireton was as equally "balanced".
More on that in Part II, tomorrow