On February 19, 2019, media news outlets reported that the editor and publisher of the weekly newspaper “Democrat-Reporter” in Linden, Alabama called for the Ku Klux Klan “to night ride again” against Democrats who “are plotting to raise taxes” in the state.
Below are the links to 4 separate national media reports:
The short editorial also proclaims that Democrats are responsible for World War I, World War II, the Korean War, the Vietnam War and war in the Middle East.
Linden is a small town in the county seat of Marengo County, Alabama, with a population of 2,123 according to the 2010 census.
Goodloe Sutton is the editor and publisher of the newspaper and he confirmed to media outlets that he wrote the editorial.
THE EDITORIAL IN FULL
The editorial appeared in print on Valentine’s Day February 14, 2019 and was titled “Klan Needs To Ride Again”.
Following is the full editorial written by and published by Goodloe Sutton:
“ Time for the Ku Klux Klan to night ride again.
Democrats in the Republican Party and Democrats are plotting to raise taxes in Alabama.
They do not understand how to eliminate expenses when money is needed in other areas. This socialist-communist ideology sounds good to the ignorant, the uneducated, and the simple-minded people.
People who do not understand the constitution do not like to be responsible.
Slaves, just freed after the civil war, were not stupid. At times, they borrowed their former master’s robes and horses, and rode through the night to frighten some evil doer. Sometimes they had to kill one or two of them, but so what.
This is the same so what used when Democrats got us into World War I and World War II. Then they got us fighting in North Korea. Next when the industrial northeast wanted more money, they got us in the Vietnam War, and now into the Middle East war.
If you haven’t noticed, they did away with the draft so their sons would not have to go into battle.
Seems like the Klan would be welcome to raid the gated communities up there. They call them compounds now.
Truly they are the ruling class.”
“Democrat-Reporter”, Goodloe Sutton, February 14, 2019.
NO APOLOGIES, MORE HATE, AND CONDEMNATION
Sutton confirmed that he wrote the editorial and went on to make even more inflammatory comments advocating violence in an interview with the Montgomery Advertiser when he said:
“If we could get the Klan to go up there and clean out D.C., we’d all been better off … We’ll get the hemp ropes out, loop them over a tall limb and hang all of them.”
When asked if he felt it was appropriate for the publisher of a newspaper to call for the lynching of Americans, Sutton argued that “socialist-communists aren’t Americans.”
Not surprising, journalist and elected officials expressed outrage and condemned the editorial.
United States Senator Doug Jones, D-Ala., called on Sutton to resign when he tweeted:
“OMG! What rock did this guy crawl out from under? This editorial is absolutely disgusting & he should resign -NOW … I have seen what happens when we stand by while people-especially those with influence – publish racist, hateful views. Words matter. Actions matter. Resign now!”
Chip Brownlee, a journalist for the Alabama Political Reporter told NBC News he is familiar with the Democrat-Reporter.
Brownlee decided to post a picture of the editorial because he “thought other people needed to see it, too” and went on to say:
“As an editor, seeing that type of dangerous language in a newspaper is disturbing. … I think sunlight is the best disinfectant.
LIKE EDITORIAL, TRUMP ENCOURAGES VIOLENCE
Goodloe Sutton proclaims “time for the Ku Klux Klan to night ride again. … We’ll get the hemp ropes out, loop them over a tall limb and hang all of them” when referring to people he does not agree with politically.
President Trump, like editor Goodloe Sutton, advocates violence against those he disagrees with and has when he ran and now that he is President.
On January 23, 2016, Donald Trump said at a rally in Sioux Center that his supporters are so loyal that he would not lose backers even if he were to shoot someone in the middle of downtown Manhattan.
“I could stand in the middle of Fifth Avenue and shoot somebody, okay, and I wouldn’t lose any voters, okay? It’s, like, incredible.”
On February 21, 2016, Trump told a crowd of his supporters in Cedar Rapids that he would pay their legal fees if they engaged in violence against protesters and said:
“If you see somebody getting ready to throw a tomato, knock the crap out of them, would you? Seriously, OK? Just knock the hell out of them … I promise you I will pay for the legal fees. I promise, I promise.”
At a Las Vegas campaign rally in March, 2016 Trump said security guards were too gentle with a protester and said “He’s walking out with big high-fives, smiling, laughing. … I’d like to punch him in the face, I’ll tell you.”
In yet another campaign rally in March, 2016 in Warren, Michigan, Trump said of a protester “Get him out. …Try not to hurt him. If you do, I’ll defend you in court. Don’t worry about it.”
In July 2017 during a speech to police officials, Trump encourage law enforcement officials to be more violent in handling arrested offenders when he said:
“When you see these thugs being thrown into the back of a paddy wagon, you just seen them thrown in, rough. I said, ‘Please don’t be too nice … When you guys put somebody in the car and you’re protecting their head you know, the way you put their hand over [their head],” Trump continued, mimicking the motion. Like, don’t hit their head and they’ve just killed somebody, don’t hit their head. … You can take the hand away, OK?’”
On Thursday, October 25, 2018, the very a day after CNN and a number prominent Democrats who have criticized him, including former President Obama, Vice Joe Biden and Hillary Clinton and 10 others, were the targets of a serial pipe bomber, Trump in a TWEET blamed the media for much of the “anger” in society by saying:
“A very big part of the anger we see today in our society is caused by the purposely false and inaccurate reporting of the Mainstream Media that I refer to as Fake News. It has gotten so bad and hateful that it is beyond description. Mainstream Media must clean up its act, FAST!”
LIKE NEWSPAPER EDITOR, TRUMP IS RACIST
Goodloe Sutton calling upon the Klu Klux Klan to act and proclaiming “Slaves … At times, they borrowed their former master’s robes and horses, and rode through the night to frighten some evil doer. Sometimes they had to kill one or two of them, but so what,” is as racist as it gets.
Trump has an extensive history of making racists remarks and taking racist actions that are even worse than the editorial.
President Trump’s racism dates back to 1973 when his housing management company was the target of a Department of Justice (DOJ) Civil Rights Division civil lawsuit over allegations that he and father as real estate developers were keeping black and Puerto Rican people out of their apartments.
For at least eight (8) years, Donald Trump was front and center of the “birther movement” and questioned former President Barack Obama’s American citizenship thereby questioning Obama’s legitimacy as President of the United States.
In 2015 when Donald Trump announced his bid for the presidency, he said “When Mexico sends its people, they’re not sending the best. They’re not sending you, they’re sending people that have lots of problems and they’re bringing those problems with us. They’re bringing drugs. They’re bring crime. They’re rapists… And some, I assume, are good people.”
On January 27, 2017, just seven days after being sworn in as President, Donald Trump signed an executive order halting all refugee admissions and temporarily barring people from seven Muslim-majority countries arguing it was needed to combat terrorism. The move sparked numerous protests and legal challenges.
President Trump during a ceremony in the White House to honor the World War II Navajo Code talkers, one from New Mexico, he took the opportunity to call Massachusetts Senator Elizabeth Warren “Pocahontas”.
In August 2017, after a 20-year-old white man drove his car into a crowd at a white nationalist rally in Charlottesville, Virginia, killing one anti-racist protester and injuring 19 others, President Trump said that there was “blame on both sides” regarding the deadly violence that was instigated by white supremacists.
The New York Times reported in December, 2017 that President Trump said in a June meeting about immigration that Haitians “all have AIDS”, a statement denied by the White House.
On December 24, 2017, The New York Times reported that President Donald Trump described Nigerians as people living in huts and that they would not want to return to them. He reportedly said 40,000 had come from Nigeria and would never “go back to their huts” once they had seen America.
In June, 2018, Trump announce his immigration “no tolerance policy” and his treatment of detaining people seeking asylum and separating children from their parents on the southern border with Mexico.
After the longest government shutdown, Trump declared a “national emergency” to divert millions of dollars to build his border wall after congress refused to fund it, despite declaring that “Mexico will pay for it”.
For more on Trump’s racism see:
COMMENTARY AND ANALYSIS
If there is anyone who is “ignorant, uneducated, and simple-minded” to use the words of editor Goodloe Sutton it is President Donald Trump and Sutton himself.
You can throw in the word racist while your at it.
What is absolutely amazing is that so many national and respected news media outlets such as CNN, the Washington Post, the Wall Street Journal, NBC news, all despised and condemned by Trump, would actually report on a very short, inflammatory and racist editorial in a totally unknown and insignificant weekly newspaper distributed to a community of a little more than 2,000 residents and probably read by even fewer.
The fact that a newspaper editor and publisher would write such an editorial and that media outlets would react to it the way they did reflects the nasty and heighten tensions and the toxic political environment created by President Donald Trump on a national level.
There is no doubt that President Trump promotes hostility, mistrust and violence towards the press as well as his critics with his own words and actions.
Trump has repeatedly labelled the media as “fake news,” even labeling reporters as “enemy of the people”.
A few months ago, Trump told his supporters at one of his many rallies:
“I just cannot state strongly enough how totally dishonest much of the Media is. Truth doesn’t matter to them, they only have their hatred & agenda. This includes fake books, which come out about me all the time, always anonymous sources, and are pure fiction. Enemy of the People!”
The “Democrat-Reporter” editorial and the reaction are a sign of the toxic political times created by a President at war with the media who condemns the media as “enemy of the people” and a President who is a racist.
Freedom of the press and freedom speech does not mean a newspaper nor a President can advocate violence against anyone.
UPDATE: It has been reported that Goodloe Sutton has resigned but is unapologetic for his editorial.