white noise

by Jordan Green and Brian Clarey

News and views from inside the media bubble

And then they came for Jeri Rowe

You’d think a column on an outgoing mayor that updates readers on what she’s doing now and analyzes the reasons she lost would be pretty straightforward. And, at least in Greensboro, you’d be wrong. Jeri Rowe’s Sunday column in the News & Record about former Mayor Yvonne Johnson met with resistance in the blogosphere from a short list of contributors whose favorite play in the book, when encountering things with which they disagree or feel the need to counter, seems to be attacking the messenger. After Rowe wrote that, “[A]ccording to some, they wanted someone white, not black,” he got blowback from Sam Hieb over at Piedmont Publius, who countered, “OK, just who is the ’some’ Jeri Rowe says wanted ’someone white, not black’?” Joe Guarino called it “race-baiting” in the type pf sensational headline that has become a hallmark on his blog. And blogger Roch Smith Jr., who has given himself the title “ombudsman at-large,” alerted his readers that he had written an e-mail to the columnist. But the best disparagement may have come from blogger Sam Spagnola, who hasd cpoined the phrase “News & Racebait” to describe the hometown daily. — BC