Last Oklahoman Editorial Writer Jumps Ship!
1:36 PM EST on February 2, 2021
Over the years, especially when people still did things like read and subscribe to newspapers, we always loved to mock, criticize and lampoon The Oklahoman's curmudgeonly hyper-partisan editorial page that went out of its way to push and promote the agenda and interests of the local right-wing GOP establishment, while at the same time, ruthlessly scolding, attacking and trying to destroy the careers of all who stood in its way.
Yeah, I guess you can say they really influenced us, huh?
Sadly, it looks like those days are officially a thing of the past. Earlier this week, Owen Canfield the III – the last remaining editorial writer for the paper working in the wild and not in captivity – announced he's abandoning ship:
Via The Oklahoman_:
On the day of Joe Biden’s swearing-in, a reader emailed to complain about a story that morning in The Oklahoman — printed ahead of the inauguration, mind you — that referred to President-elect Biden and “President Trump.” The writer’s message: “It’s President Biden you piece of s---!”
Who needs that? Not I. Not anymore.
That's funny. We've been saying the same thing about the Oklahoma Editorial Page for years! It's nice to see we finally got our wish!
Here's more from his editorial. Make sure you tune your tiny violin.
After 17-and-a-half years writing opinion for The Oklahoman, this is my last day. I exit without a parachute — no job awaits — but have decided this move needs to happen, as much for my emotional well-being as anything. Simply put, I’m worn out.
This departure has nothing to do with my recent decision to begin putting my name on editorials. That has been well received by readers. Instead, this is strictly about the need to get out of the fray and do something else. It's been a long time coming...
Translation – He's waiting for OCPA to toss him a life-line. Or better yet, maybe he'll get a job in PR working for Jim Inhofe, Stephanie Bice or some other right-wing organization. They could always use a good propagandist to beat home their alternative facts, ideological talking points, and distorted political rhetoric.
Little about the newspaper, or the business, is the same, either. And, the tenor of the times has taken its toll. We have reached a place where respectful disagreement is rare. It has become easier to scream that someone with an opposing view is the enemy or an idiot or a bigot or a choose-your-derisive-adjective than it is to engage in constructive dialogue. The intolerance and shaming and cancel culture are corrosive, and tiresome...
Yep, the guy who wrote editorials for a paper that specialized in cultural intolerance, and went out of its way to ruthlessly shame and cancel people in our city and state that didn't toe the line of oil overlords and the local ruling class, is now complaining about the very same thing. Give The Oklahoman Editorial Page credit – it's stayed hypocritical to the very end.
That being said, I can relate a bit to what Owen goes through. In the same article, I'll sometimes have one commenter calling me a soi boy tree hugger, while another complains that I'm a male chauvinist pig. When you're a world-class antagonist like me, it's part of the territory, and if you care about what nameless people on the Internet think, I guess it can be tiring. Then again, I'd much rather deal with someone complaining about words I wrote (and they voluntarily read) on the Internet, as opposed to when I waited tables and some Karen would bitch me out because the kitchen forgot to leave onions off her smothered chicken.
Anyway, you can check out Owen's full editorial over at The Oklahoman. I sincerely wish him the best of luck moving forward. I also have no clue if the paper is going to bring aboard a new editorial writer, only publish national views and guest op-eds, or just give the job to Boomer Tramel and Jenni Carlson. They may be the only people writing commentary for the paper anymore. Wake me up if you find out.