Monday, December 11, 2017
WashPo Uses Nameless Sources to Report on Fired NFL Exec’s Drinking Problem; Readers Call it ‘Gutless”

WASHINGTON, D.C. March 10 (DPI) – The Washington Post today jumped in the gutter with The Washington Redskins as it cited anonymous sources when it reported that the team’s fired general manager had a drinking problem. And readers for the most part criticized the newspaper for “trashing” the fired executive, 46-year-old Scot McCloughan.

About the only defense of the newspaper is that the executive is reported to have publicly dealt with alcohol abuse in the past, prior to signing with the team two years ago.

McClouhlan has apparently had a hand in the team’s improved play. That prompted  readers to say the “the guy did a better job drunk than they have been able to do sober.” Another reader also recalled Lincoln’s remark about his most successful general, Ulysses S. Grant, rumored to be a heavy drinker: “Let us send a barrel of his whiskey to every general in the Army.”

Still, the decision to use anonymous sources while covering the firing of the executive struck many readers as “gutless,” as one put it. The Post, too, inserted the usual qualifier that the executive could not be reached for comment, which only made the report seem unreasonable:

Neither McCloughan nor his agent, Peter Schaffer, could immediately be reached for comment. Late Thursday night, McCloughan’s wife, Jessica, tweeted: “Leadership is about making others better as a result of your presence & making sure that impact lasts in your absence.”

But to many readers the nature of the report came across as unfair and unnecessary. Most popular comments attached to the report on today:

Classy move to fire the guy with no official comment, while trashing him via anonymous accusations.

If this is true, then this guy did a better job drunk than they have been able to do sober, what does that tell you?

Alcoholism is recognized as a disease. If they leaked that his (supposed) alcoholism was the reason for his firing, have they not violated HIPAA?

Washington Post deserves an “F” for using anonymous sources to say that the fired Redskins GM has a drinking problem. The Redskins have long been a classless outfit – but for The Post this just doesn’t meet the standard of our need to know. Just fire him – but don’t ruin him.



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