Libel, anyone?There are liberal elements to the mainstream press that agitate conservatives. The New York Times is a conservative byword for evil in many cases. Newspapers with a liberal Democratic editorial line are always going to be a part of our national discussion because partisan newspapers have been a part of our political heritage since the founding of the republic. Papers like the Times and the Boston Globe are entitled to their editorial line.
There is another kind of publication with editorial bias, and it isn't a real newspaper. This kind of publication delights in the libel of political opponents. The Memphis Flyer is such a piece of printed toilet paper, and they attempted to ruin the career of a conservative Knoxville State Representative with a doctored photo. A couple of years ago, Tennessee State Representative Stacey Campfield shadowed Democratic Governor Phil Bredesen at the annual barbecue hosted by Congressman Jimmy Duncan and held up this bumper sticker:
This was the picture the Flyer published:
Because the folks at the Flyer don't like Stacey's political views, they chose to publish a doctored picture that might ruin his political career. Rather than conduct themselves honorably, the liberal editors of the Flyer chose to smear a political figure they didn't like. Over the last couple of days, I joined several of Stacey's friends in advising him to do something that I would not be likely to advise someone to do: Sue the Flyer and own the paper. I don't think people ought to delight in lawsuits, but the courts do exist for a reason.
Apparently The Memphis Flyer got the message-they apologized for the offending photograph-though it was a very poor apology.