September 22nd, 2015

You can always feel comfortable that personnel changes by the Cleveland Browns will be forthrightly reported by the almost daily Plain Dealer.

Must keep the public informed, you know. That’s the job.

But when the Plain Dealer subtracts some its starters, well, that’s not really news. Not that important. The paper will come out anyway.

We can always fill space with larger sports photos.

So those personnel cuts aren’t that important to our almost daily news publication.

Well, truthfully, when you lose longtime reporters it does mean something.

And, I guess, we’ll report it if they won’t.

Taking buyouts are some long-time reporters. They include transportation reporter Alison Grant, veteran Ron Rutti, film critic Clint O’Connor, sports reporter D’Arcy Egan—and Gayle Powell, have taken buyouts. They’ll be out by the end of the month.

The PD was going to layoff six anyway so it seems one more should go soon.

Will we miss them? Probably not. We are getting used to being short-changed by the Plain Dealer. Back in the 1970s I guess it was the Cleveland Plain Dealer. But Cleveland wasn’t doing so well so the paper cut Cleveland from its name.

Now the newspaper Winston Churchill once called the best name ever for a newspaper can reduce it a bit more. Just call itself The Plain.

No frills. Less news. Lots of crime, sports, and downtown development. Otherwise, ask your neighbor to keep you up to date.

Meanwhile at city hall

I caught an abbreviated news conference by Mayor Frank Jackson after the heartrending killings of two Cleveland children—5-year old Ramon Burnett and 3-year old Major Howard.

The photographs of the two loveable-looking children would tear anyone’s heart.

So it demanded a press conference.

Jackson looked tired. He looked older.

What struck me, however, was the Mayor’s lack of emotion.

He showed no passion, no anger, all appropriate to let the community know how much and how deeply he felt about these two sickening killings. Yes, he called them “innocents.” Not exactly dramatic.

When pre-schoolers are casualties of gun battles among teen-agers or youngsters a bit older how can anyone feel the community has not devolved to a totally unacceptable low.

Then we can read all the racist comments on the paper’s web site. Sickening, too. And so unnecessary. Take them down Rodrigue!

One reporter told me that Jackson was angrier at Zach Reed who proposed using $1 million for police overtime than the mayhem.

That won’t do the job either. Police aren’t the answer.

Jackson used the word “innocents” to describe the young children.

That seemed to be as far as he could go in attempting to tell the community how he felt. It wasn’t enough.

It’s really never enough with Mayor Jackson. Too bad.

By Roldo Bartimole…

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