Sheriff Bends on Ruben Salazar Files
Wednesday, August 11, 2010
Ruben Salazar with Robert F. Kennedy in 1968, the year Kennedy was assassinated and two years before the journalist was killed by a deputy's bullet. (Credit: Ruben Salazar Archive/University of Arizona)
"Reversing his previous decision, Los Angeles County Sheriff Lee Baca said Tuesday that he was directing his staff to determine what records might be released regarding former Times columnist and KMEX-TV News Director Ruben Salazar, who was slain by a deputy in 1970," Robert J. Lopez reported Wednesday for the Los Angeles Times.
"On Monday, Baca said he was denying a request by The Times for records that might shed light on the circumstances involving the newsman's slaying, in part because he lacked the resources to review the eight boxes of files.
"The killing, which occurred during a riot after a massive anti-Vietnam war rally in East Los Angeles, left a wound that has yet to heal 40 years later and has caused many to question whether Salazar was targeted.
'The Sheriff's Department has said the slaying was a tragic accident and that the deputy was operating under emergency conditions when he fired a tear-gas missile into the Silver Dollar bar, where Salazar and a KMEX reporter were taking a break from covering the action on Aug. 29, 1970.'
As the University of Arizona wrote in 2008, when a postage stamp was issued in Salazar's honor, "Salazar is recognized as a boundary-breaking pioneer. Mario T. Garcia, a Salazar biographer, lists him as the first Latino to work for the El Paso Herald Post, the first Latino journalist to cross into mainstream English-language journalism, the first Latino journalist to work as a reporter for the Los Angeles Times, and the first Latino journalist to become a foreign correspondent, having reported from the Dominican Republic, Mexico and Vietnam. His work was most influential when he became the first Latino journalist to have a column in a major English-language newspaper, the Los Angeles Times."
Parks, schools, libraries and scholarships across the country have been named in honor of Salazar, the Times noted. The Rub?©n Salazar Scholarship Fund, has been awarded since 1987 by the National Association of Hispanic Journalists to help boost the number of Latinos in newsrooms. "For journalists of color, Salazar is a symbol of the need to push for diversity in the mainstream media and accurate coverage of Latino issues," NAHJ said.
The Times story Wednesday continued, "Baca's decision came as the Board of Supervisors, responding to an article in The Times about the documents, ordered county attorneys to prepare a report by next week to determine whether the records are public and what the costs would be to review them.
"Baca spokesman Steve Whitmore said the sheriff changed his mind because he wants to have all the facts before deciding whether the records will be released. The sheriff is going to examine all the options and let the analysis of the documents go forward," Whitmore said.
"In an interview, one of Salazar's daughters urged the department to release the records to help bring closure.
" 'It's been 40 long years,' said Lisa Salazar Johnson, who was 9 when her father died. 'I'd like to get an answer to why he's not here and why I had to grow up without a father.' "
- Frank Sotomayor speech at the National Press Club at the unveiling of the Ruben Salazar stamp (April 22, 2008)
"In an apparent protest this week, the CNN host and Newsweek columnist Fareed Zakaria returned a five-year-old first amendment award presented to him by the Anti-Defamation League in light of the Jewish group‚Äôs opposition to a mosque that may be built near ground zero," Brian Stelter wrote Friday in the New York Times.
"In a letter to the ADL, Mr. Zakaria said he could not 'in good conscience hold onto the award' given the group‚Äôs stance.
"Last week the group said its opposition to the proposed site of the mosque was rooted in the fact that some families of victims of Sept. 11 find the proposal offensive. The group suggested that its backers find a different location."
The ADL confirmed Wednesday that it received the returned Hubert H. Humphrey First Amendment Freedoms Prize on Friday. It was presented to Zakaria, who is Muslim, in 2005.
Abraham H. Foxman, the national director of the ADL, wrote Zakaria:
"I hope you have read our statement on the proposed Islamic Center at Ground Zero and, more importantly, understand our position. We did not oppose the right for an Islamic Center or a mosque to be built. What we did was to make an appeal based solely on the issues of location and sensitivity. If the stated goal was to advance reconciliation and understanding, we believe taking into consideration the feelings of many victims and their families, of first responders and many New Yorkers, who are not bigots but still feel the pain of 9/11, would go a long way to achieving that reconciliation.
"ADL has and will continue to stand up for Muslims and others where they are targets of racism and bigotry, as we have done at the request of and on behalf of Imam Faisal Abdul Rauf.
"I am holding on to your award and check in hope that you will come to see that ADL acted appropriately and you will want to reclaim them."
- Allen Johnson, Greensboro (N.C.) News & Record: Mosque debate an N.C. campaign issue?
- Bob Ray Sanders, Fort Worth Star-Telegram: A mosque is offensive? No, not in this country
- Tony Norman, Pittsburgh Post-Gazette: Of New York mosques and moral clarity
- Fareed Zakaria, Newsweek: Build the Ground Zero Mosque
"Sydney 'Syd' L. Small, one of the nation's pre-eminent African-American broadcast owners for more than three decades, died suddenly this past weekend in New York. He was 72," Target Market News reported on Tuesday.
"His death was confirmed by Access.1 Communications where he was chairman and CEO. Further information about his passing was not immediately available. The company owns radio stations in New York, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Texas, and Louisiana, also has television stations in Atlantic City and New Jersey.
"Small's pioneering career as an owner in broadcasting spanned 37 years. A native of Brooklyn's Bedford-Stuyvesant, he left an executive position at Time Inc. in 1972 to co-found, with partner Eugene Jackson, Unity Broadcasting Network and National Black Network. NBN was the first African American-owned line connected radio network in the U.S.
"In 1991, in what was to that point the biggest deal in the history of black radio, National Black Network and Sheridan Broadcasting Corporation came together to form what is now American Urban Radio Networks. Today, AURN is the only African-American owned network radio company in the United States. It is the largest network reaching urban America, with more than 200 weekly shows reaching an estimated 20 million listeners.
'Access.1, which owns 49% of AURN, also owns SuperRadio, a general market syndication company which distributes 40 radio programs through over 1400 affiliate agreements with more than 725 radio stations."
- Statement from National Association of Black Owned Broadcasters (PDF)
- David Hinckley, New York Daily News: Sydney L. 'Syd' Small, owner of radio station WWRL, dies at age 72
Fairness & Accuracy In Reporting looked at New York Times Book Review, C-SPAN. (Credit: FAIR)
"A new FAIR study of the New York Times Book Review and the C-SPAN program After Words finds that when it comes to politically oriented books, white male authors and reviewers dominate," the group Fairness & Accuracy In Media reported on Tuesday.
"FAIR's study examined every episode of After Words from March 2008 to January 2010, and the reviews of politically themed books in the Times Book Review from January 2009 to February 2010. In total, the study counted 100 episodes of After Words and 100 reviews in the Times.
"RACE: In the Times, 95 percent of the U.S. authors of political books were non-Latino whites. The reviewer roster at the Times was even less ethnically diverse: Just 4 percent of U.S. reviewers of political books were people of color. On C-SPAN, non-Latino whites accounted for 93 percent of the U.S. authors appearing as guests. Of the 99 U.S. interviewers who appeared, 14 were people of color.
"The study did not find a single U.S. Latino or Native American author or reviewer in either the Times or on After Words during the periods studied.
"GENDER: The numbers on gender were likewise unbalanced, with men the dominant presence in both outlets. In the Times, women made up just 13 percent of the authors and 12 percent of the reviewers. On After Words, women were 24 percent of the authors and 31 percent of the interviewers.
"Among 231 reviewers and authors combined, the Times included just two women of color: PBS news anchor Gwen Ifill and history professor Bettye Collier-Thomas, both African-American authors. The Times published no women of color as political book reviewers."
The Times did not respond to a request for comment. C-SPAN spokesman Howard Mortman said by e-mail, "Constructive criticism of our work is always welcome and we'll certainly take a look at their report in light of Book TV's overall mission to cover contemporary non-fiction books."
[Times spokeswoman Diane McNulty said on Thursday, "We haven't seen the study, but I assure you that diversity is a priority at The New York Times Company."]
"The Long Island paper Newsday will hire 37 people, including 34 journalists, according to an internal memo obtained by MediaJobsDaily," Ryan Derousseau reported on Wednesday for that website.
"In the memo, Newsday editor-in-chief Debby Krenek explains that the paper will seek to grow its hyper-local coverage of Long Island towns, by adding more beat reporters while also increasing the number of pages focused on local news and opinion by 2,600 for the year.
"It's a sign that the paper will focus on smaller neighborhoods, targeting specific towns and launching 'hundreds of hyper-local pages later this month,' wrote Krenek.
"With other hyper-local sites like AOL Patch starting to creep into Newsday's neighborhood, it's not a surprise to see the local paper expand.
'Newsday also plans to improve its business coverage, by adding more daily reports and creating a new daily business newsletter. The opinion section is also set for a significant enhancement."
"In a bid to ensure Net Neutrality, the Free Press has commissioned the Harmony Institute to develop a strategy that will target poor, rural African- Americans in the South and women to increase support for a Net Neutrality (NN) strategy," Yaounde Olu reported Tuesday for the National Newspaper Publishers Association.
"Net Neutrality is basically the principle that all Internet traffic should be treated equally. In other words, everyone has access, and all platforms, content, and sites are treated equally. The opposite concept is a system wherein there would be limited or possibly 'tiered' access. This could impact small businesses and other individuals without the economic wherewithal to access all sites.
"According to the Free Press, the core supporters of Net Neutrality are affluent whites, who have easy access to broadband and understand the issues. Poor, rural African-Americans and women, however, are the demographic that must be influenced in order to build a secure NN support base."
"Under the joint proposal, Verizon said it would be prepared to accept restrictions that would limit its ability to favour some types of internet traffic over others. In return, it would have the freedom to charge internet companies extra to have their services carried on a new 'fast lane' running parallel to the existing internet, and would face no restrictions on its ability to block or slow services on its mobile network," Richard Waters reported Monday for the Financial Times.
"The freedom this would give network operators drew strong reactions on Wednesday from some of Google‚Äôs biggest rivals. In a statement, Ebay said: 'Two-tier networks with corporate toll lanes would stifle ground-up innovation and benefit dominant businesses at the expense of smaller competitors and entrepreneurs.' "
- Marian Wang, ProPublica: The Net Neutrality Spat Explained
"An estimated 340,000 of the 4.3 million babies born in the United States in 2008 were the offspring of unauthorized immigrants, according to a new analysis of Census Bureau data by the Pew Hispanic Center," the center reported on Wednesday.
"Unauthorized immigrants comprise slightly more than 4% of the adult population of the U.S., but because they are relatively young and have high birthrates, their children make up a much larger share of both the newborn population (8%) and the child population (7% of those younger than age 18) in this country."
"The Pew study comes as lawmakers in Washington have been debating whether to consider changing the 14th Amendment of the Constitution, which grants citizenship to anyone born in the United States. The controversy erupted after Senator Lindsey Graham, Republican of South Carolina, said in July that he might offer an amendment to revoke birthright citizenship for the American-born children of illegal immigrants," Julia Preston reported in the New York Times.
The number of children of illegal immigrants has become a part of that debate. On NPR's "Tell Me More" on Wednesday, Republican Ernest Istook, a former Oklahoma congressman who is a fellow at the Heritage Foundation, said "Texas became aware that last year there were 60,000 children born in the Lone Star state to parents who are illegal immigrants. . . ." But host Michel Martin told listeners when the segment ended, "We contacted the Health and Human Services Commission in Texas and its research shows that 63,466 children were born to non-citizens in that state last year. That number would include those in the country legally, as well as those who are undocumented."
- Merlene Davis, Lexington (Ky.) Herald-Leader: We need immigration reform done the right way
- Roland S. Martin, Creators Syndicate: Change the U.S. Constitution? Let's Do It!
- Deborah Mathis, BlackAmericaWeb.com: Idea to Repeal 14th Amendment Sick, Desperate
- Ruben Navarrette, Washington Post Writers Group: Back in the Arena
- Gustavo Reveles, National Association of Hispanic Journalists: Border Reporting: More Than Just Frontera Violence
- Rub?©n Rosario, St. Paul Pioneer Press: Dear Arizona (and Minnesota): There has to be a better way
- Albor Ruiz, New York Daily News: It's time to stop Staten Island hate crimes
- Mary Sanchez, Kansas City Star: We need a better system to reform immigration
- Marisa Trevi?±o, Latina Lista blog: The backlash from conservative critics over AZ SB1070 just gets worse and worse
- Cynthia Tucker, Atlanta Journal-Constitution: Obama administration spares young illegal immigrants
"Meredith is helping Michelle Obama share her goal of ending childhood obesity and promoting general good health across the country," Alex Alvarez reported Monday for Fishbowl NY. "The First Lady graces the September cover of Ladies' Home Journal, and her message appears in four other Meredith titles: Family Circle, Parents, Ser Padres and Siempre Mujer.
"We spoke with Sally Lee, editor in chief of Ladies' Home Journal, about the innovative way these Meredith titles worked together to bring Michelle Obama's message to their readers.
"Lee explained that each of the five magazines involved submitted their own questions for the First Lady to answer in one interview, each focusing on a specific angle relevant to their respective readership."
- Michel Martin, "Tell Me More," NPR: The First Lady's Vacation From Empathy
"Add a fat paycheck (by the standards of today's struggling journalism market, anyway) to the list of reasons why it's awesome to work for ProPublica, the Pulitzer Prize-winning nonprofit investigative outfit," Mike Taylor reported Tuesday for Fishbowl NY.
"One of the things ProPublica disclosed was the wages of its highest-paid employees. (In its admirable pursuit of transparency, ProPublica posts documents related to its operations on its website.)
"ProPublica paid out $6.4 million in salaries, other compensation and employee benefits last year, up from $4 million in 2008. Each of the top eight employees raked in six figures, drawing down a total of $2.1 million in salary plus $181,181 in other compensation. President and editor in chief Paul Steiger made more than half a million!"
ProPublica reported a staff of 13.3 percent journalists of color in the American Society of News Editors' survey of online news operations, released last month.
- "Since its inception, Fox has emulated the 'If it bleeds, it leads' mindset of local news, garnishing its presentation with snazzier graphics and more urgent production values," Brian Lowry wrote Saturday for Variety. "The canny post-Sept. 11 adaptation has been, 'If it scares, it airs.' Race is just the latest and perhaps ugliest aspect of that equation."
- Despite its $12 million influx of federal cash, OneUnited, the nation‚Äôs largest African-American-owned bank and one in which the husband of Rep. Maxine Waters, D-Calif., has a stake, still ranks among the worst of those bailed out, according to the Investigative Reporting Workshop at American University. "The bailout money has not been repaid, and OneUnited 'has not yet met' all the goals of the corrective plan set forth by federal and state regulators, according to the Investigative Reporting Workshop," Marian Wang reported Monday for ProPublica. The House ethics committee has alleged that Waters improperly used her office to help the bank.
- Sixty-two percent of Hispanics identify as Roman Catholic. Among them, regardless of language preference, only 55 percent of young adults 18-29 identify as Catholic, compared with 80 percent of those 65 and older, an Associated Press-Univision poll has found. In addition, 31 percent of Hispanics believe same-sex marriage should be allowed; 35 percent think it should not be; and 28 percent believe it should not be allowed but think same-sex individuals should be able to legally form a civil union, the survey found.
- Randy Gener, senior editor of American Theatre magazine, has been selected Journalist of the Year by the National Lesbian and Gay Journalists Association. Judges said,"Some of the best journalism is being done outside of traditional newsrooms and by people covering niche areas. Gener's writing on theater, especially as it interacts with LGBT lives, is beautifully done, knowledgeable and almost lyrical in its language." Awards are to be presented at the association's 20th anniversary convention in San Francisco Sept. 2-5.
- "An interesting thing happened when I was watching 'Nightline' a few days ago," Rebecca Aguilar, an at-large board member of the National Association of Hispanic Journalists, wrote last week on the NAHJ site. "I was intrigued when correspondent John Berman started his report on The Travel [Channel's] 'Bizarre Foods' host, Andrew Zimmern, but I was quickly disappointed when it was obvious the correspondent needed a good course in 'Mexican Food 101.' . . . I expected Berman to eat something really nasty ‚Äî a rat or maybe a bat. The suspense was on. Berman appeared ready to eat something gross as he stared at some kind of soup. Suddenly, Berman tells us he is going to eat 'menudo' and 'tongue tacos.' What? That‚Äôs his idea of bizarre foods. That‚Äôs like me saying 'spam' and 'bologna' are bizarre."
- Roy Hobbs received well-wishes from former viewers commenting to the Atlanta Journal-Constitution website after Rodney Ho reported on the former anchor's interview with Journal-isms. Hobbs worked in Atlanta before moving to Birmingham, Ala. He said he suffered from clinical depression for 25 years before his arrest on drug-possession charges in Birmingham in April. "Glad to hear you are in recovery, Roy. You may never know how your honesty about your situation has helped some other person struggling through similar issues. I wish you all the best," one commenter said.
- "While we've been obsessing over LeBron James's decision and Brett Favre's indecision, a real story ‚Äî one of staggering importance ‚Äî has pretty much been ignored," Michael Wilbon wrote Monday in the Washington Post. "It's a story of the NFL finally facing the truth about the frightening nature of head injuries, a story that could one faraway day lead football down the same path as boxing, one that has already persuaded me to ban my son from ever playing organized football." Wilbon called it "the biggest crisis the sport has ever faced."
- "Just days after Tiger Woods floundered through a career-worst performance at the Bridgestone Invitational, Golf Digest is bringing back his playing instructional tips for its September issue hitting newsstands around the U.S. on Tuesday," Michael McCarthy reported Wednesday for USA Today. "The magazine shut down his column in January (but kept him on the masthead as a playing editor) following his Dec. 11 announcement he was taking an 'indefinite leave' from golf following the car crash that ignited a storm of coverage about his extramarital infidelities."
- In Charlotte, N.C., "Vince Coakley, who succeeded Bill Walker as a prime anchor for WSOC five years ago, is leaving the station," Mark Washburn reported Tuesday for the Charlotte Observer. " 'This season of reporting and anchoring the news has run its course,' Coakley said in a statement. 'It has been positive and meaningful for me.' Coakley, a native of Cincinnati, has been at Channel 9 for 18 years. He had brain surgery in 2002 when a brain tumor was diagnosed after he appeared to have lost his sense of smell. He did not elaborate on his statement.
- Desiree Rogers, named Tuesday as CEO of Johnson Publishing Co., said she planned to reshape the content of Ebony and Jet magazines to make them ‚Äúmore relevant" and ‚Äúmore exciting,‚Äù particularly with respect to the monthly Ebony, Lynne Marek reported Tuesday for Crain's Chicago Business. "She pointed to Ebony's upcoming September issue with a photo of President Barack Obama on the cover tied to a feature on his administration's education initiatives as illustrative of the content changes she'll be making. With respect to the weekly Jet, there will be more focus on integrating the magazine with its Web site, she said."
- In Mexico, "Ulises Gonz?°lez Garc??a, the editor of the regional weekly La Opini??n, who was kidnapped from his home in J?©rez, in the state of Zacatecas, on 29 July, was released in the early hours of 9 August and was rushed to a private hospital for treatment to the injuries received during his abduction, some of which appeared to have been caused by torture," Reporters Without Borders said on Wednesday.
- "The International Federation of Journalists and its regional body the European Federation of Journalists today condemned a crackdown by French authorities on the country‚Äôs minority Roma community, warning that it will encourage xenophobia and intolerance," the federation said Saturday. "They also accuse police of obstructing journalists following a dawn raid on one major campsite."
- In Uganda, "Timothy Kalyegira, a former Daily Monitor columnist and current publisher of an online newspaper, yesterday became the first Ugandan to face sedition charges arising from the use of new media," Angelo Izama reported for the Monitor in Kampala, the capital, on Aug. 4. "Police on Monday summoned Mr. Kalyegira to appear for interrogation over reports that questioned whether it was really the Somali-based militants, the al-Shabaab, that bombed and killed at least 80 people and injured others in Kampala last month."
- In Burundi, press organizations "are protesting that Burundian authorities have charged Jean Claude Kavumbagu, editor of Netpress news agency with 'treason', an offence that attracts life imprisonment if found guilty," the Catholic Information Service for Africa reported Tuesday. "On July 17, 2010 police arrested Kavumbagu, at his office, following publication of an article on his news website which warned that Burundian security forces lacked capacity to effectively deal with terror threats that could be waged against the country by Somali extremists group, Al-Shabaab."
- "Indiana resident Edward 'Wally' Clemons was arrested last week after authorities were tipped off by an interview he gave a Filipino magazine about his rooster breeding operation," Ngoc Nguyen reported Tuesday for the Asian Journal, "John Goodwin with the Humane Society of the United States said his organization discovered the operation after Clemons gave an interview [to] Pit Games, a Filipino magazine dedicated to cockfighting, and reported it to the Indiana Gaming Control Division. On the cover of issue #31, the magazine tells readers there‚Äôs a story inside about 'Wally Clemons: The breeder from Indiana.' The story details breeding for different styles ‚Äî American, Filipino and Mexican. Goodwin said this is 'industry-speak' for different fighting styles. Each style puts different types of blades on the animals‚Äô feet for the fights."
Richard Prince's Journal-isms originates from Washington and is published Monday, Wednesday and Friday. It began in print before most of us knew what the Internet was, and it would like to be referred to as a "column." For newcomers: The words in blue (on most computers) are links leading to more information. The Web site BugMeNot.com provides passwords and user names to some registration-only news sites. Any views expressed in the column are those of the person or organization quoted and not those of any other entity.
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