Echo Chamber - Over The Top
The FITS' girls were minding our own business Sunday afternoon, window-shopping along Saluda Street in downtown Columbia's Five Points area, when we happened to come across this week's edition of the Columbia City Paper.
Needless to say, we about dropped our Venti Blended Moccha Frapuccinos (with the Chocolate Drizzle) upon taking a good look at the cover art, which suggestively depicted two Trav Robertson-size children's toys engaged in a sexual position that most God-fearing Christian gals (like us) are quite unfamiliar with ...
... thankfully Sic Willie - using some Snoop Dogg lyrics - was there to give us a quick primer.
Even more shocking than the cover art, however, was the fact that the City Paper's over-the-top illustration was referencing none other than the alleged illicit affair of Charleston Rep. Wallace Scarborough and Beaufort Rep. Catherine Ceips - the paper's lead story of the week.
Are you kidding us?
Look, we're the pretty keen on the Biblical admonition "Let (them) without sin cast the first stone," and by no means do we consider this little blog a bastion of journalistic integrity - but come on, isn't this a little bit too much?
Sure, it's one thing to publish court testimony from a private investigator detailing the alleged affair of these two Republican Representatives, or to use their indiscretions as a launching pad for throwing rocks at the "family values" hypocrites among us (never mind that this kind of infidelity runs rampant in both political parties at the State House) - but seriously, where's the journalistic integrity in using play toys to depict two public figures having sex on your front cover?
Again, we're not going to judge here - obviously the Columbia City Paper made an editorial decision to run the controversial cover art in an effort to increase its circulation (the same issue also features a local tattoo parlor ad on its back cover with a bikini-clad female flipping the bird to the camera along with the caption "F--- you, we're #1").
In addition to penning the lead "news" story, columnist Will Moredock (who broke the Scarborough story a few weeks back in the Charleston City Paper), vents his spleen John Monk-style in an accompanying editorial deriding the SCGOP for its "family values" hypocrisy. True enough. But as Moredock swings for the fences at this low-hanging fruit, we were struck by the final (and lone non-vitriolic paragraph) of his opinion column.
"Morality begins with personal behavior, not laws and constitutional amendments," Moredock writes in concluding his tongue-lashing.
Funny, Will, so does journalistic integrity.
As much as we generally loathe Ceips and, at times, Scarborough (and as much as they will both likely reap what they sow as this unfortunate matter continues to unfold in the public eye), we don't think either Representative deserved the kind of portrayal they received at the hands of the Columbia City Paper this week.
In putting the "graphic" into graphic art, the Columbia City Paper went too far in our humble opinion ... and how many times can you recall FITS saying something like that?