SOUTH OF THE TRINITY: WHAT HAPPENED HERE? By Rufus Shaw
by Special to DallasBlog.com    Mon, Dec 26, 2005, 12:39 PM

After the Dallas Morning News "better late then never" expose of Mayor Laura Miller which detailed her questionable relationship with Southwest Housing and its owners, those of us South Of The Trinity were expecting the city’s white mass media to leap on one of the year’s hottest stories immediately. After all, it was Channel 8 and Channel 11 who continued to hound African-American political officials who were caught up in the City Hall corruption scandal that involved the same Southwest Housing Mayor Miller is so involved with. Much of what had been reported as vile acts of possible corruption regarding the behavior of African-Americans elected officials were also reported about Mayor Miller in the Dallas Morning News piece. So, why was Miller able to escape further media scrutiny while her Black counterparts at city hall were not?

Usually, immediately after a story of this magnitude where Mayor Miller’s own activities are called into question with documentation, the Morning News would have had a follow up editorial, another follow up story, and tons of letters to the editors regarding the featured expose--at least that is how the paper handled similar city hall exposes when Black city leaders were the main characters. Could the lack of further critical coverage of Mayor Miller’s activities at city hall represent a rift in the media community? On the one side there are journalists and television reporters who have seen Mayor Miller’s disingenuous act at city hall and elsewhere. This group recognizes the real truths about the Mayor’s activities are hidden from public view. On the other hand, there are those in the media who are either fans of the Mayor’s or true believers in the Mayor’s stewardship of the city. The latter group seeks to shield Mayor Miller from the kind of negative media glare used to demonize the Mayor’s enemies; primarily African-American members of the city council. How else can anyone explain an exhaustive investigative report by one of the nation’s leading newspapers that put the Mayor right in the center of the city most embarrassing scandal in our history and little or no white mass media coverage follow-up ensues?

In a tale of two cities, maybe North Dallas whites are wondering; what is the big deal about the Miller expose story dying? However, those of us South Of The Trinity are all too familiar with the tactics of a cover-up when whites in power are caught in embarrassing media moments. The truth is there is no good reason why Mayor Miller’s activities that put her in the center of a city hall corruption scandal have not only been further reported on but they also have not apparently been investigated by the FBI. If the Mayor Miller expose in the Dallas Morning News is even close to being the truth then the Mayor Laura Miller public image should be no better then the public images of Don Hill, James Fantroy, Leo Chaney, Jr. and Maxine Thornton-Reese.

If the citizens of Dallas expect those of us South of The Trinity to respect law and order and the institutions in charge of maintaining law and order, then law and order must apply to everybody --- not JUST-US! That is how we see it from South Of The Trinity.

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