In case your readers didn't hear the latest, Mayor Greg Ballard (GBAL) announced the formation of a Public Safety Advisory Board that includes (drum roll please) two of the most recognizable voices on the radio WXNT-1430 Abdul Hakim Shabazz (INBR) and WTLC-1310 Amos Brown (ABWN). Gary Welsh (ADIN) spared no punches in his critique of the arrangement. And he wasn't alone as Indy Democrat (IDEM) weighs in as well.
We contend that by including Abdul on the board, Mayor Ballard can all but guarantee a positive spin on any rise in crime or wayward police officers five days a week. We did find it especially humorous to read Abdul's flaccid attempt to justify his willingness to be part of the story instead of simply reporting it. As for Amos, for the first itme in recent memory this leaves local Democrats without a friendly platform to speak out against any of the Mayor's past, present or future crime initiatives. It will be interesting to see how public opinion reacts to this new development going into 2011.
We feel it will be all but impossible for Melina Kennedy, Jose Evans or Ron Gibson to aggressively criticize Ballard to the solidly Democratic audience of WTLC 1310 and not make Amos look like an willing accomplice.
While it was pretty obvious that Abdul was right of center and Amos left, they at least could consider themselves somewhat independent towards the local power structure. And that's what made them both relevant and respected by their peers and followers. In our opinion this is no longer the case. From this point forward many in the community will view these two as field staff for the mayor's office and once that's your public image there's no turning back. The one good thing for the new Amos and Abdul team is that these two no longer need to pretend to be objective "journalists". As a matter of fact we're not even sure that these two will ever have an opinion they can call their own.
We won't speculate why these two would
UP: GBAL $110, FSTRA $100, ADIN $120, NQAI $80, IDEM $170
DOWN: INBR $125, ABWN $100, SiMi $30