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‘Arizona Republic’ editor warns staff to ‘carefully consider the consequences’ of unionizing

Posted by   /  August 31, 2019  /  No Comments

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Greg Burton accused union sympathizers of “surveilling” other journalists, saying that’s something he’d expect of a murderer or child molester

By Dave Jamieson | Huffpost

‘Arizona Republic’ Executive Editor Greg Burton sent a staffwide email Thursday lamenting a “divisive unionization effort” that had taken hold in his newsroom. But his email probably didn’t go far in restoring harmony.

Burton alleged that ”several employees, in pursuit of their goal of unionizing our newsroom, are tracking the comings and goings of a number of their co-workers” who don’t support the effort. Without elaborating on the allegation, Burton went on to tell the story of how a shady former detective he once reported on had entered his house and made a recording, as an illustration of the sort of scumbag who would surveil somebody.

 “I reference this incident to underscore the fact that journalists are targets of political haymakers and troublemakers, of operatives and would-be intimidators, of crackpots and criminals,” Burton wrote. “We are targets on social media. We are targets when we stand firm on a story that unmasks a murderer running for office, a teacher who molests children, an appointee who bulldozes indigenous artifacts or stockpiles weapons, a mobster who doesn’t much like being called a scam artist or a dirty trickster intent on DOXing a critic.”

He clarified: “These are the types who surveil journalists. Journalists don’t surveil other journalists.”


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