Home » Opinion » Is Port Arthur Now Trying to Control the Local News Media?

Is Port Arthur Now Trying to Control the Local News Media?

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I doubt there are very many people who aren’t aware of how biased and bigoted the mainstream media has become for purely politically motivated reasons.  If there are two words that I believe no longer apply to the mainstream media they have to be honesty and integrity.  However, this isn’t so of our local news media as it strives to present factual and honest reports of events that could affect the lives of us here in the Golden Triangle of Southeast Texas.  So in that the City of Port Arthur has long been known and recognized as a hotbed for corruption and other improper, inappropriate behavior it should come as no surprise were I to say that I think Port Arthur is trying to corrupt our local news media through restrictive, and sometimes dishonest, behavior.  And this round all started with this:

Courtesy of KFDM 6 News

KFDM 6 NEWSTCEQ investigating sewage spill into drainage ditch in Port Arthur

Courtesy of the Port Arthur News

PORT ARTHUR NEWSSewer spouting stream of scum

Both articles pertain to reports of raw sewage including used condoms, tampons, human wastes, et all, being emitted from an exposed underground pipe located between 46th and 53rd Streets, just west of Twin City Highway, in Port Arthur, Texas.  What you might now have been able to see in trying to locate the spewing mess, you would have most likely smelled.  So I found it quite strange that upon having learned of the reports, the City of Port Arthur issued a statement that a crew had been sent to the location to investigate, but that nothing was found; and, thereby it must be just another phony report.  All well and good except the next day, the City issued another statement saying the problem had been resolved that morning.  The first question I had was how could something that couldn’t be found one day, thereby making the reports appear false, be repaired the following morning?

53rd Street west of Twin City Hwy

53rd Street west of Twin City Hwy

46th Street City Sewage Pump Station west of Twin City Hwy

I took these pictures on Saturday morning after the reports of the exposed underground pipe having a pressure release system inside that allowed the sewage to spew outward when a certain reading was reached.  So now it makes me wonder why, if the City of Port Arthur had earlier discounted the reports as being false, and then stating repairs have been effected the next day, why were there so many people, and so much heavy equipment, working the site a few days after the incident was supposedly resolved?  Could it be that someone in the Waste Conveyance Department wanted to make sure any evidence showing this had been an ongoing, undetected problem, was destroyed?  Let’s just say that I haven’t much faith in Port Arthur trying to do the right thing, and matters like this confirm my suspicions.  So I ask, what do you think?

But there’s more to this than just the matter of raw sewage spewing from an exposed pipe.  During the course of time following the release of the news reports, the City of Port Arthur took steps to control when members of the local news media could acquire information from the City.

This Press Release was issued by the City of Port Arthur late last week.  A copy of the Press Release was provided to the Jefferson County Beer Party by a trusted source.  At the request of that source, I cropped the document so as to protect that person’s identity from retribution by the City of Port Arthur.  And this opened up another kettle of worms for the City, as Angel San Juan of KFDM 6 News attempted to find out more.

KFDM 6 NEWSMixed messages from Port Arthur city officials over releasing information to the public

After you watch Mr. San Juan’s report, or read the narrative, take a few minutes to reread the Press Release pictured above.  In the release it clearly states that Interim City Manager Harvey Robinson issued the statement.  However, in the report he denies any knowledge of it.  Okay, so now do we have to question the honesty and integrity of Port Arthur’s choice for Interim City Manager, too?

I don’t personally know Harvey Robinson, but based upon his attitude toward Angel San Juan seeking a clarification, I’m not so sure I want to.  Furthermore, I’ve obtained other information that the City of Port Arthur will authorize information exclusively to KFDM 6 News and the Port Arthur News.  Now this fits because in my more than two decades of calling Port Arthur my home, I’m all too aware of why this is likely to be so.  Although both members of the local news media had previously been known to literally kiss-up to Port Arthur officials, the same is no longer true now with Angel San Juan at KFDM and Rich Macke at the Port Arthur News.

So I guess what this all means is that we, the citizens of Port Arthur, as well as others who follow local events, can no longer believe that what’s being told to the public is factual or just a smoke screen to make Port Arthur look like something it isn’t:  safe and a wonderful place to be.  Too, with these revelations the City and its leaders and administrators can’t be trusted to accurately and truthfully issue information.  So what we have here isn’t a democracy as much as it’s a dictatorship.

I really have to wonder just how much more of this stuff the people of Port Arthur are going to put up with before they decide to get off their lazy rear ends and do something about it?  Less than 10% of the City’s registered voters cast ballots in local elections.  Our elected officials, and even those appointed by our elected officials, have more than adequately demonstrated they are less concerned for the community than they are their own personal and political special interests.  I’ll go on record as saying that if changes are effected, and effected soon, Port Arthur may have a lot in common with the dinosaurs!  And, if these people elected to represent the people of Port Arthur in government don’t start representing the people in lieu of themselves, then I may just have to seriously reconsider not running for Mayor of the City.  I can imagine a campaign slogan of “Cut the Crap“!

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