Atlanta Unsheltered is reporting that the Atlanta Journal-Constitution’s editorial board no longer features Jay Bookman or Cynthia Tucker. That’s a pretty huge move — removing, as Ken Edelstein puts it, the “two most important liberal voices in the state for the last two decades.”
This move represents AJC Publisher Julia Wallace’s stated intention to create more balance in the paper. She noted earlier this year that reader’s had complained “that our editorial pages are too liberal,” and removing Tucker and Bookman answers those complaints pretty effectively.
I think this is a good move. Where is it written that a newspaper’s editorial board must sit on the far left end of the political spectrum? We can assume that the new board will be closer to the middle and won’t automatically alienate a large number of its readers. Thoughtful editorial writing, not beholden to one political ideology, will better serve the city of Atlanta.
As newspapers seek to hold on to their readership in this new media environment, perhaps more will purge their editorial boards in an attempt to make a product more palatable to both sides of the political spectrum.