Thursday, November 1, 2007

In Our Opinion...

The Old Grey Lady Has Become Irrelevant

We are saddened by the further decline of the New York Times as evidenced by its recent, totally mindless, endorsements of two incumbent mayors, each of whose administrations are currently under federal investigation
for irregularities and unlawful conduct. One has to seriously question whether the newspaper’s editorial board has had any meaningful contact with the reality on the ground either in Yonkers or Mount Vernon.

As for their endorsement of Ernie Davis, We wonder what the Times was thinking about, and if they had any awareness of the fact that Mr. Davis, and members of his administration are presently under three separate federal investigations. Perhaps they buy into the notion that the “affable man,” as they are quick to refer to him, is without fault, or sin, and that somehow the United States Attorney’s Office, and the FBI, have nothing better to do than to waste their time, and taxpayers’ money, picking on an innocent man.

Perhaps if the Times had taken the trouble to visit the City of Mount Vernon, and had actually spoken with real people, those who work hard for a living, and are struggling to raise their families in a city where gunshots ring out as steady background noise; a city where kids must rush home, and lock their doors, having no recreation or employment opportunities to speak of, despite years of worthless promises from Mayor Davis; perhaps then they
might have understood why Clinton Young’s under nanced ‘grass roots’ effort succeeded despite being outspent nearly ten to one. Everybody knows, and have grown weary of the fact, that what few camps and employment
possibilities there have been have repeatedly gone to the children and grandchildren of Ernie’s cronies.

As for their endorsement of Phil Amicone, We wonder just how much commitment the Times has to the First Amendment. We wonder if perhaps their editorial sta , those who are supposed to interview and scrutinize candidates for public office, even realized that the “person” they would “entrust with Yonkers’ hopes for a brighter future,” is someone who stomps on, and stiffles the Constitutional Rights of the City’s citizens to a Free and Unfettered Press; a person whose content-based violations of civil rights, included the confiscation and destruction of a newspaper’s distribution boxes, as well as the arrest and harassment of its employees because of unfavorable, but truthful, comments about his conduct in public office.

Yes, We are saddened, indeed, but not surprised by the depths to which the newspaper that once published the Pentagon Papers, and staunchly defended their own right and the right of reporter Neil Sheehan to publish information leaked by Daniel Ellsberg in recognition of their obligation to serve the People’s Right To Know, would sink in the betrayal of readers’ interests for the commercial connections incumbents often bring to the table. We have watched their slow, but steady decline, with respect to objectivity and credibility in their coverage of Westchester.

We would have hoped, following the Blair Affair, and the housecleaning, and reshuffling that followed, that more attention to objectivity and credibility would have become a high priority at the Times, if only to maintain their
relevance. These mindless endorsements suggest that is not the case.

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