Over the past two days, the Tallahassee Democrat has published four stories related to sex. All of this while ignoring financial shenanigans and questionable votes by local government officials that even Barney Fife could uncover.
On January 28th, the esteemed publisher and editor of the Gannett owned Tallahassee Democrat decided it was their journalistic responsibility to inform some of the most educated voters in the state of Florida that the former (as in 2013) StarMetro executive director was arrested for prostitution…wait for it…wait for it….in Memphis, Tennessee.
So, 54o miles and four state borders away, the Tallahassee Democrat reports about the embarrassing weakness of a City employee who left Tallahassee almost four years ago.
What’s next, an interview with former neighbors?
I can hear the riveting journalism now, “‘he was a nice guy and he kept to himself ‘, said one neighbor.”
Next, the Tallahassee Democrat brain-trust decided it might be best to write about a sexually themed expose’ involving someone actually living in Tallahassee. So the investigators over on Magnolia reported about how a “well-known Tallahassee pastor was forced to flee naked after a husband came home early and found him having sex with the man’s wife.”
The post on Facebook, as of this writing, had generated over 200 shares and 150 comments! The click bait must have had the “Storyteller Editor” (a real title) over at the Democrat jumping with excitement as the “social media measurables” went through the roof.
However, some people on Facebook were not as excited and posted these comments:
“Shame on you for posting this. About as shameful as what you’re reporting on. Are you a newspaper or a gossip rag?” Renee Miller
“How is this news? And it took two to make this a wrong! Where is her name? Wait she doesn’t claim to be a pastor. Let’s go after the man of God expose him. That is what the article is all about. Shame on you. This is becoming an Enquirer paper at best.” Alicia Stanley
“Tallahassee Democrat should be ashamed for posting this. Regardless of who is at fault, both families have young children that are having to deal with the actions of their parents. Is it necessary to put this in the paper? The kids are already catching enough heat from this small town and its gossip. Think about how the kids are dealing with this and have some respect for them.” Kali Pringle Gray
In between these two stories, the Tallahassee Democrat posted two more stories on Facebook, which had no local relevance, but must have been rated high in their click bait formula.
One was titled “Mr. Clean gets sexy in Super Bowl ad debut” and the other was “50 Swimsuit looks from Miss Universe 2017.”
While the Tallahassee Democrat exposes a pastor, they failed to report on how the City Commission voted to ignore a Planning Commission recommendation and instead paved the way for an unwelcomed multi-family development in a neighborhood on the southside. You can see our report here.
While the Tallahassee Democrat embarrassed a former City of Tallahassee official who now resides in Memphis, Tennessee, they ignored how Mayor Andrew Gillum broke a campaign promise that impacts voters and fattens his wallet. You can read our report here.
The bottom line is if the Tallahassee Democrat wants to reveal the sexual escapades of a local pastor and a former City employee, then they should also have the courage to hold locally elected officials accountable.
However, it appears the Tallahassee Democrat has become part of the problem by failing to recognize their responsibilities as the “fourth branch of government.” Like many politicians they now see public service as a way for them to make money for themselves and their friends.