Pro-KKK paper in Alabama announces sale to apparent Klan leader—then the story keeps getting weirder
A small-town Alabama newspaper continues to baffle beyond comprehension, ever since it made headlines with a Valentine’s Day editorial calling for “the Ku Klux Klan to ride again.”
The newest episode of this saga begins just days after the resignation of the black woman charged with replacing Goodloe Sutton—the Democrat-Reporter’s longtime owner and publisher who wrote the pro-Klan editorial—with the sale of the print-only paper first reported by the Associated Press on March 21.
Goodloe Sutton told The Associated Press this week’s issue of The Democrat-Reporter of Linden, Alabama, could be his last.
Sutton — who has refused to apologize for promoting a resurgence of the KKK — would not go into details about the supposed buyer, and he has been trying to sell for years since the death of his wife. The weekly has few local advertisers.
Linden Mayor Charles Moore said he was recently contacted by a representative from a newspaper company interested in purchasing Sutton’s operation.
“She asked me if I thought someone could turn that paper around,” said Moore. “I told her she was going to have to do a lot of legwork.”
Sutton’s “last issue” supposedly hit newsstands last week, again, with the news of the sale dominating the front page, according to Chip Brownlee, the APR reporter who first broke the story of the KKK editorial and surfaced other racist content the paper printed through the years.
But when Brownlee attempted to learn more about the Democrat-Reporter’s sale, and new owners Harless and McMahan, he set in motion a stunningly odd and concerning chain of events that offers little insight into what’s actually going on down there in the media world of tiny Linden, Ala.