Common sense would dictate that difficult as it is for daily newspapers, someone would have figured out the obvious; that in a somewhat conservative midwestern city like KC the smart money would be not to cater exclusively the most far left points of view imaginable.
You know, provide a bit of balance so as not to alienate readers who’s passions go beyond sticking it to Donald Trump and Republicans every five minutes and worshiping at the altar of political correctness.
After all, who wants to choke out a couple hundred bucks a year to listen to a bunch of underpaid know-it-alls talk down to them?
What locals want is news, news they can use.
Rather than preachy editorials and slanted stories passing as news.
You’d think that having dipped from more than 2,000 staffers in the last decade to a handful of hundred, with plummeting readership and disappearing ad revenues, the guys at the top of the Kansas City Star would have gotten the message.
Ah, but now comes word as to why the Star and other McClatchy owned newspapers all feature the same basic news and opinion slant; that’s what corporate is dictating.
“I was talking to Star editor Mike Fannin a few months back and told me that that’s what corporate is insisting they do,” says a former Star newsie. “It was almost like he was apologizing for it.”
However make no mistake, in my years at 18th and Grand the preponderance of reporters, columnists and writers were liberal Democrats who shared largely the same views on economics, societal issues and politics.
There was no playbook per se – nothing sinister – just the product of low wages and nerd tendencies that tended to foster a brotherhood and sisterhood of like mindedness.
At this point, I probably should remind readers that I voted for Obama twice. So bear that in mind before you pigeonhole me as ultra conservative.
And for the record, I’m as flummoxed by some of the stuff that comes out of Donald Trump‘s mouth as the next guy.
Still, I hardly find it interesting – let alone profound – to read column after column yesterday’s Star editorial talking about Trump’s “continuing obsession with football players and the national anthem.”
The president should be focussing more on North Korea, etc.
Who says he’s not?
Millions of Americans put full work weeks and still find time to discus stuff like sports, movies, shootings in Westport and Daughters of the Confederacy statues on Ward Parkway.
It’s called multitasking.
Just as the Kansas City Star manages to find time ad nauseam to cheer on the NFL players protesting during the national anthem.
Don’t they have more important news to cover?
Talk about hypocrisy.
Besides, not everyone agrees with the Star that it’s okay for football players to protest while they’re on the job being paid beaucoup bucks.
Case in point this headline in USA Today:
“NFL commits suicide by Trump with politically correct protests”
“Sports used to be fun, but these protests are divisive and pointless,” it begins. “Can’t we just play ball? Remember when you could enjoy pro football without getting lectured on politics? Not any more. The NFL is on a politically correct suicide course, alienating fans and wrecking ratings.”
Gee, I wonder if that’s why Chiefs owner Clark Hunt held back from bashing Trump and millions of others who think employees should exercise their free speech on their own time – not while they’re on the clock?
“Members of the Baltimore Ravens and Jacksonville Jaguars appearing at London’s Wembley Stadium even chose to dishonor the U.S. flag on foreign soil,” the story continues. “But they stood for God save the Queen, the anthem that was playing when most of Africa was placed under British colonial rule. These jocks probably were not history majors.”
As for the protests being a First Amendment issue, “This is not a First Amendment issue,” it continues. “Employers are allowed to regulate speech in the workplace.The NFL’s personal conduct policy says all employees ‘must refrain from conduct detrimental to the integrity of and public confidence in the NFL’ which these protests surely are. The league regularly clamps down on social messaging, such as wearing cleats commemorating the heroes of the 9/11 attacks or decals honoring slain Dallas law enforcement officers. Taking a knee for God can also be problematic, just ask Tim Tebow. But the anthem protests are explicitly league-sanctioned activities.”
What’s more in a new poll 64 percent of responders agreed with Trump that NFL players “should stand and be respectful during the national anthem.”
Only 25 percent disagreed (no doubt including the Star editorial board and sports columnist Sam Mellinger).
And of the fans watching players from their favorite teams protest last Sunday only 30 percent said they would be more likely to watch future games with 50 percent saying they would be less likely.
So yeah, maybe Clark Hunt knew what he was doing weighing and Mellinger’s the one with egg on his face.