Buried at the bottom of this story about Heather Fargo’s uphill battle against KJ’s celebrity status, the Bee’s Mary Lynne Vellinga mentions yesterday’s Padilla bombshell about KJ:
This week, Johnson has again had to contend with allegations of sexual misconduct with teenage girls in Phoenix and Sacramento. Charges were never brought in either case, but rival mayoral candidate Leonard Padilla on Tuesday distributed the police report in the Phoenix case to the press.
Yes, he had to contend with them again because they were reported on in the same paper after being dropped off by a very concerned political opponent. The Phoenix case was also reported on 13 years ago when it was news, but not by the Sacramento Bee, even later when Johnson took charge of a local high school. Does the Bee only report on stories that are dropped off in greasy envelopes delivered by hat-wearing, toothpick chewing drifters?
But the Bee never has to apologize for ignoring (assuming my amateur Google searching skills are reliable–I couldn’t find any Bee stories about the Phoenix case before this) what commenters here have pointed out was public information about Johnson, even though similar charges were brought up just last year at Sac High.
Of course, the Bee is not responsible when bad people do bad things. But one would hope your only local daily paper would think long and hard before printing something about a local candidate that is hand-delivered to them by a political opponent. And one would hope that current mayor Fargo would have to “contend” with things like the city’s budget problems (her name isn’t mentioned until the last two paragraphs), shady campaign finance maneuvers, her stupidity over the railyard debacle of ought seven, her extensive travel, or why the city’s murder rate has grown steadily while she has been mayor (except for 2003, which actually is the year KJ took over Sac High).
This being said, as I mentioned before, reading the PHXPD transcript of the “confrontation call” does not leave you with a good feeling. I definitely do not think this is a non-issue. In political terms it is probably the perfect storm, since KJ can keep pointing out that no criminal charges have been filed, but as long as the Bee can keep mentioning it–even in an article primarily about Fargo–the damage has been done.
6 thoughts on “Bee pats itself on the back for KJ allegations”
1) He totally did it. The confrontation phone call is really hard to spin any other way.
2) But yes, the timing of the Bee and LP in bringing this up now, having ignored it so many other relevant times, is pretty shoddy and transparent.
If the Bee (fish-wrap) is your primary source for investigative, unbiased, competent journalistic work, you deserve the information you get. No surprise that their heads were buried in the sand until someone they did not have to employee provided them with free (albeit politically motivated) information. It is also interesting that some sort of sexual accusation comes up when a black man (who makes sense and is gaining power) is involved. IÃ¢â‚¬â„¢m guessing the next issue on the horizon will be Ã¢â‚¬ËœdiscoveriesÃ¢â‚¬â„¢ related to his religious proclivities.
So Koofii is it your interpretation of the transcript that the accusations are made up b/c of KJ’s enthnicity or that they are only surfacing b/c of his ethnicity? Or did you not read the transcript?
HeyMeg, maybe they’re true – but would they have come out if they were equally true for a white guy? I think that’s the point – not truth or lack of, but the framing. Everybody has dirty laundry – but why do newspapers like to air some and not the rest?
Maybe that’s the problem here. Sacramento needs a Mayor willing to “Sex You Up!” Sexy rail yard, Sexy K street Mall, Sexier City in General! Think of the tourism dollars. What’s wrong with that? No longer a Cow Town image. Maybe get some building going with tourism?
“Sex Up Your Sitty, Sactown!” Sex Your Sitty Slogan (TM) 2008 Turty Squip
The way the Bee played this one makes me wonder if this is the direction we can expect from them under editor Melanie Sill’s leadership. I agree totally that this issue IS news, but the question about the play they gave the story under the circumstances CoolDMZ points out is also legit. I’ve noticed less and less news in the Bee since Sill came on board, and more fluff and sensationalism. For example, they did away with the news digest that used to run on A2 in favor of expanding the oh-so-fluffy Names & Faces. Sigh. I’m a longtime newspaper subscriber but this kind of stuff just continues to weaken their hold on me. If it wasn’t for Mark Trail I’d consider canceling my subscription!
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