Saturday, June 22, 2024 Jun 22, 2024
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Jacquielynn Floyd Is Not Keeping It Local

A Metro columnist ought to be more concerned with events in Dallas.

Jacquielynn Floyd is a Metro columnist for the Dallas Morning News. With the departure of Steve Blow a while back, she and James Ragland are the only two left. I guess Robert Wilonsky could be considered a Metro columnist. I don’t know. I’m still trying to figure out what, exactly, he does (aside from everything). Anyway, Floyd has been at it a long time. She knows the drill. So I’m confused by her recent selection of columnar material.

In recent weeks, she has written about the tumultuous, short tenure of the mayor of Corpus Christi; a rattlesnake found in a toilet north of Abilene; and, today, a crazy obituary that appeared in a Galveston newspaper. Each of these stories had been widely shared on social media before Floyd came to them, almost as if they were bacteria that had spread throughout the populace. The stories had gone bacterial, as it were. So why would Floyd choose to write about stuff that has absolutely nothing to do with Dallas? I can think of only three reasons:

1. Her husband’s recent illness has made it difficult to focus on writing her column. If that’s the case, she has my sympathy. But I’d rather she write more about that struggle than toilet snakes in Abilene.

2. The crushing, relentless Metro column deadlines have taken their toll. She’s out of gas. If that’s the case, she again has my sympathy. But a change needs to be made. She’d be happier doing something else.

3. Her editor has seen the traffic that Floyd’s column gets when she writes about bacterial stories, and that editor has encouraged her to write more of the same. If that’s the case, she totally has my sympathy. But I can’t think of a surer strategy for driving the paper into the dirt than writing about whatever flits through your Facebook feed. If the DMN wants to survive in these click-baity times, it needs to bring me local content that I can’t find anywhere else. Less news from Galveston, please. I’ll take fewer toilet snakes from Abilene, thank you. I’d like to read about what’s happening in North Texas. If you’ve got a smart take, people might even pay for it.