“Because sometimes… the truth isn’t good enough. Sometimes people deserve more. Sometimes people deserve to have their faith rewarded.“
As evidenced by their endorsements this week, the Sun-Sentinel editorial board has given up. And they want you to wave the white flag of surrender too. Instead of fighting the corruption, the lazy politicians and slimy consultants, the Sun-Sentinel editorial board wants you to “hold your nose” and vote to keep things the same.
Sure, you can say people don’t care about newspaper endorsements anymore. You can say people use the internet to make up their own minds. But what about those voters who are not tech-savvy? What about the little old lady who trusts the Sun-Sentinel? Who will defend her right to have an honest government run by dedicated politicians and judges?
On Thursday, the Sun-Sentinel editorial board published the most amazing endorsement of Judge Steven B. Feren. The editorial board called Feren the “underwhelming favorite.” They spoke about his reputation of being lazy and leaving working early. When asked if he takes Fridays off, Feren told them he’s just as likely to leave early on a Monday. “I’m just as likely to leave at 4 o’clock on a Monday or Tuesday as I am on a Friday,” Feren said. “Judges aren’t elected to punch the clock.”
Of course Judges aren’t elected to punch a clock. But we do elect them for their sound judgment and legal expertise. We elect judges to protect the rights of all citizens at their most vulnerable hour. And the record clearly shows Feren doesn’t protect our children.
RED BROWARD reported on Feren’s removal from juvenile court after the Fourth District Court Of Appeals ruled he was being unfair to juvenile defendants. The appellate judges feared Feren was pushing Broward’s youth, assuming the charges against them proved their guilt. Feren was punishing minors for proclaiming their innocence.
The Sun-Sentinel editorial board must have known about this case. Right?
Then, there’s little Lilly Baumann.
Two-year old Lilly has been missing since May when she disappeared with her racist, conspiracy theory-loving, gun-toting mother. Lilly’s dad, Robert Baumann, begged for full custody of Lilly. He brought pictures of Lilly playing with boxes of bullets to Feren, hoping he would protect Lilly from her mother and her boyfriend. He showed racist YouTube vieos posted by the boyfriend. Baumann gave Feren pictures of Lilly clad in Confederate gear among strangers.
Feren ignored Baumann’s plea. He told Lilly’s mom to buy gun locks. Two months after awarding joint custody to Megan Everett, she vanished with Lilly. She left a rambling letter discussing the evils of vaccinations, black history and Abraham Lincoln.
When Robert Baumann was at his most vulnerable, when he feared for the safety of his little girl, he believed Judge Steven B. Feren would protect him.
Feren failed Robert Baumann. Worse, he failed a baby girl. Lilly is still missing. Sunrise police fear she has been taken out of the state. When the Broward Palm Beach New Times published an expose’ on Lilly Baumann, Feren refused to comment.
Feren can hide behind the law. He can say the law called for joint custody. But anybody with a pulse and an ounce of common sense would know Lilly was not safe with her mother.
When he had the chance to do the right thing, Feren took the easy way out.
The Sun-Sentinel editorial board must have known about Lilly Baumann, right?
The editorial board must know how Feren was the only resident to receive a full refund of his deposit when the TAO condo project went under, right? They must have known about the FBI coming to Feren’s office, right?
So why did they tell voters to hold their noses and vote for six more years of Feren?
They make a big deal about Contini’s religion. The editorial board makes sure to identify Contini as a “born-again Christian,” yet they do not reveal Feren’s religion.
They quote Feren’s attack on Contini’s religion, “The answer is in Jesus Christ our Lord.”
The paper makes no mention of Feren’s faith. Or his endorsement by the Muslim EMERGE PAC. Or his tens of thousands of Muslim Indonesian Twitter followers.
But they go out of their way to label Contini as a Christian. Why?
The editorial board describes their joint interview of the candidates as a daytime talk show. “The two sounded more like reality show combatants than judicial candidates. Amid their accusations, bickering and interruptions, the only thing missing from the conversation was the audience chant, ‘Jerry! Jerry! Jerry!'”
Guess what Sun-Sentinel editorial board, Jerry Springer wants his guests to yell and bicker. He wants his audience to chant his name. He wants the ratings. Why did you lose control of the interview?
Did you investigate the “accusations?” Or did you snicker and giggle like the fools in the Maury studio audience? Satisfied to boo and cheer based upon your preconceived notions?
Broward deserves better.
All the little things build up. Politicians flouting residency laws. Government contracts awarded to well-connected friends. Lobbyists acting as lawyers for politicians.
It destroys our faith in our institutions. Voters see it. Our children see it.
What should they think when our newspapers endorse lazy, inept politicians.
When our journalists lose faith, the people are left with no else to trust.