Well, it has come to this. Local progressive Democratic activists have for years attempted to work with The Desert Sun, aka The Pro Bono Sun, and, more recently, mydesert.com, to have more accurate and fair reporting on local politics. But, the Pro Bono Sun and mydesert.com has been oblivious to the changing demographics in the Coachella Valley and continues to inaccurately and unfairly represent local Democrats.
Case in point, the recent article which listed the four Democratic candidates for the CA 80th Assembly District that listed only three of the candidates and omitted the name of Greg Pettis, Mayor Pro-tem of Cathdral City and Candidate for the 80th AD. Inaccuracy at its worst, or prejudice at its best.
More below the flip…
Last week, the Pro Bono Sun and mydesert.com corrupted an article on the ineffectual representation of Rep. Mary Bono Baxely Mack (R-CA) in the 45th Congressional District. The Gannett news empire, of which TDS is apparently a not-so-integral part, posted an amazing story about Mack ranking 309 out of 425 Congressmen and Congresswomen in the current Congress re power and legislative skill. Scathing journalism, truth to power. TDS however watered down the article, incorporating the two powerful U.S. Senators in CA, Sen. Barbara Boxer (D-CA) and Sen. Diane Feinstein (D-CA), and reworded the title of the article and the text to mask Bono’s ineptitude.
Must be nice to be a friend of TDS (was that the picture of the TDS hierarchy at Mack’s wedding? Talk about conflict of interest).
The Pro Bono Sun is oblivious to the fact that the Coachella Valley is changing and the progression is probably irreversible. During Election 2004, Palm Springs, Desert Hot Springs, Cathedral City, Coachella, and Indio all voted a majority for Kerry/Edwards over Bush/Cheney. In 2000, when the CA 80th Assembly District was formed, Republicans held an advantage over Dems. Now, as of February 2008, Democrats outnumber Republicans by almost 15,500! Together, Democrats and Decline to State voters amount to 51% of the voters in the 45th Congressional District where Rep. Mary Bono Baxely Mack holds onto the district by the tips of her French nails.
Last Saturday, representatives from the Desert Stonewall Democratic Club, the Palm Springs Democratic Club, the Democrats of the Desert, and the Palm Springs Democratic Women have launched a media watch group for the most egregious news media venture in the Coachella Valley: The Desert Sun (aka, The Pro Bono Sun). These clubs plan to also include the other Democratic clubs and our allies in the Coachella Valley in our efforts to track the inaccuracies and bias of The Pro Bono Sun and mydesert.com.
(Remember the Democratic Unity Rally for the New Hampshire primary where 75-100 activists gathered at the Look Patio Bar & Restaurant and where the Republicans had nothing scheduled? The Pro Bono Sun took quotes from Democratic Rally organizers Greg Rodriguez and Rob Simmons for sure. But, even without any event, The Pro Bono Sun tracked down three, count them, three Republicans to counter. No Republican party, three quotes. Democratic Unity Rally, two quotes. Interesting.)
The Times, er, The Sun, it will be achanging. Otherwise, the media watch wars begin.