Black woman replacing Alabama editor who endorsed KKK

A white Alabama newspaper editor who advocated for the revival of the Ku Klux Klan is turning over control of the small weekly to a black woman.

Posted: Feb 23, 2019 6:25 AM

BIRMINGHAM, Ala. (AP) — A white Alabama newspaper editor who advocated for the revival of the Ku Klux Klan is turning over control of the small weekly to a black woman.

The Democrat-Reporter of Linden, Alabama, announced Friday that Elecia R. Dexter will take over as publisher and editor from Goodloe Sutton, who has run the 140-year-old paper since the 1960s.

Dexter, 46, told The Associated Press that Sutton will retain ownership of the newspaper, which has a circulation of about 3,000, "but I will handle everything else."

Sutton had a history of publishing racially and ethnically insensitive editorials, and Dexter said she hoped her appointment would let the community know "this is everybody's paper."

"I think it can be helpful," she said.

The change came the week after Sutton wrote and published an editorial that began: "Time for the Ku Klux Klan to night ride again." The editorial said Democrats and "Democrats in the Republican Party" are plotting to raise taxes, so the Klan should raid their communities.

Sutton, in a subsequent interview with the Montgomery Advertiser, suggested lynchings as a way to clean up Washington. Sutton also questioned whether the KKK was violent, claiming America's most feared white supremacist terrorist organization "didn't kill but a few people."

Auburn University and the University of Southern Mississippi quickly rescinded previous honors for Sutton, who won praise two decades ago for stories exposing corruption in the sheriff's office. The Alabama Press Association censured Sutton and suspended the Democrat-Reporter's membership.

Dexter, whose family is from rural Marengo County, where Linden is located near the Mississippi line, said she began working at the paper earlier this year and has a good working relationship with Goodloe. She added: "I told him there were some different ways you could have made your point."

The paper has received emails from those who supported what Sutton wrote and others who were "disgusted" by his statements, she said.

The paper dates to 1879 and its editorials are consistently conservative and often critical of Democrats. The use of "Democrat" in its name reflects back to the period when nearly all white conservatives in the South were Democrats.

Mississippi Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Cases: 313942

Reported Deaths: 7240
CountyCasesDeaths
DeSoto21580258
Hinds20330415
Harrison17879309
Rankin13594278
Jackson13429246
Madison10088217
Lee9970174
Jones8370163
Forrest7670152
Lauderdale7188241
Lowndes6387146
Lamar622486
Lafayette6184118
Washington5332133
Bolivar4801132
Oktibbeha462198
Panola4582106
Pearl River4506146
Marshall4435103
Warren4386121
Pontotoc420172
Monroe4107133
Union410076
Neshoba4030176
Lincoln3962110
Hancock378486
Leflore3493125
Sunflower335990
Tate333384
Pike3316105
Scott315773
Alcorn312768
Yazoo311469
Itawamba299777
Copiah296865
Coahoma295179
Simpson294988
Tippah288168
Prentiss279760
Adams278782
Marion269080
Leake267473
Wayne262641
Grenada261386
Covington258281
George247848
Newton246261
Winston227081
Tishomingo226667
Jasper221048
Attala214273
Chickasaw207757
Holmes188873
Clay185254
Stone182433
Tallahatchie178541
Clarke177980
Calhoun170532
Yalobusha164238
Smith162334
Walthall133945
Greene130533
Lawrence128524
Montgomery126742
Noxubee126734
Perry126338
Amite123042
Carroll121828
Webster114532
Jefferson Davis107033
Tunica105226
Claiborne102430
Benton99525
Humphreys96533
Kemper95728
Franklin83623
Quitman80716
Choctaw76318
Wilkinson67230
Jefferson65528
Sharkey50217
Issaquena1686
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Alabama Coronavirus Cases

Cases: 531404

Reported Deaths: 10985
CountyCasesDeaths
Jefferson765501522
Mobile41036805
Madison34789503
Tuscaloosa25788453
Montgomery24340589
Shelby23449249
Baldwin21154308
Lee15882171
Calhoun14511314
Morgan14306279
Etowah13843353
Marshall12232223
Houston10570281
Elmore10068205
Limestone9974151
Cullman9676194
St. Clair9661243
Lauderdale9427241
DeKalb8831186
Talladega8227176
Walker7241277
Autauga6926108
Jackson6814112
Blount6678137
Colbert6306134
Coffee5519119
Dale4838111
Russell441538
Chilton4296112
Franklin426082
Covington4129118
Tallapoosa4023152
Escambia393677
Chambers3573123
Dallas3551152
Clarke351161
Marion3122101
Pike310977
Lawrence300398
Winston274473
Bibb260964
Geneva250477
Marengo249564
Pickens234461
Barbour231057
Hale223077
Butler216069
Fayette212562
Henry188844
Cherokee185245
Randolph180542
Monroe177540
Washington167339
Macon159650
Clay156756
Crenshaw152557
Cleburne148941
Lamar142535
Lowndes138853
Wilcox127130
Bullock122841
Conecuh110529
Perry107726
Coosa107628
Sumter104732
Greene92534
Choctaw60724
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