Reporter Reflects on Leftist Hopes of Newspaper Publisher

November 21st, 2008 6:47 PM

You might think media bias is a new thing, but a 40 year confession of a newspaper reporter gives us a peek behind the curtain as to how horribly biased newspapers have been for nearly a half century. Martin Dyckman, a former reporter for the leftist St. Petersburg Times, reminisces about the day he read over the wire that John F. Kennedy had been killed in Dallas.

The St. Petersburg Times newsroom was in controlled pandemonium. I don’t recall whether I handled any assassination copy that day; more likely, I was editing state and local news. But I was standing at the teletype when the first flash came in that a suspected Marxist, Lee Harvey Oswald, was being held in connection with the shooting. Times Publisher Nelson Poynter was standing nearby when I announced that.

His face fell.

"Oh, no," he said. "I was hoping it would be a right-winger."

That's right. He wasn't angry that a student of oppression tried to destroy this nation. He was disappointed that the President of the United States wasn't killed by a conservative, stealing an opportunity to fuel conservative hate.