Longtime Alexandria columnist Dennis Dalman says he was run out of town by Republicans

Categories: Media beefs
dennisdalman.jpg
In Alexandria, the media is anything but liberal, Dalman argues.
After three decades of writing fiery left-of-center columns for the Alexandria Echo Press, Dennis Dalman was unceremoniously fired in late July. He was on the receiving end of an email from management telling him his services were no longer needed for the paper of record in Mary Franson's hometown. He wasn't given an opportunity to write a farewell column.

SEE ALSO: MNGOP Rep. Mary Franson, through tears, says: "Democrats are just destroying this state"

Echo Press officials deny it, but as he explains in an email to KFGO radio host Mike McFeely, Dalman believes he was ultimately run out of town by Republicans.

"'Management' caved in to the pressure from the troglodytes," Dalman wrote in his email. "I've been getting lots and lots of e-mails from fans just now discovering WHY my column hasn't been in since July 26... It's good to know that while the ultra-right-wing goons are popping champagne corks, many readers are NOT celebrating."

Regarding his sometimes right-wing-bashing language, Dalman says he stands by it, because "name-calling is the stock-in-trade of addle-brained right-wingers and I reserve the right to 'name-call' them back on their vicious lies and distortions, especially those aimed at Obama (those pathetic "birthers," for example)... To my credit, I never called anybody a 'slut,' as their ultra-right-wing radio god Limbaugh did."

As you'd expect, Echo Press management looks at things differently and ran this explanation of Dalman's departure in print:
Dennis Dalman's column will no longer appear in the Echo Press. He's long been a regular contributor to the Opinion page and we thank him for all the effort he's put into his many columns over the years. His leaving will create a big hole to fill but newspapers are continually moving and changing their products and we're no exception. We wish Denny well. He is a gifted writer and we're sure he'll be missed by many of our readers
But that didn't satisfy McFeely, and he wrote an email to Echo Press publisher Jody Hanson straight up asking her if there was anything to the notion Dalman was forced out by pressure from the political right.

"It is correct that we are no longer running columns written by Dennis. It is however, incorrect that the reason for no longer running Dennis' columns are your statements above," Hanson wrote. "Mike, as you know, media markets are ever changing. In radio as well as in newspaper. Change is hard for people to accept and understand. We all continue to move forward and strive to meet the needs and wants of our listeners and readers. We are here to serve our communities."

But McFeely still isn't convinced, and buttressed his case with this update to his report about Dalman's dismissal:
One of Dalman's harshest critics in Alexandria is the former local Chamber of Commerce head Mac Bryant... Here is a letter from Mr. Bryant that appeared in today's Echo Press, which I am reproducing on my blog for no other reason than to show the group of people to whom Jody Hanson and Echo Press management apparently caved:
Disappointed that school succumbed to political correctness

To the editor:

I am disappointed to see our local MNSCU college, ATCC, succumb to political correctness and open a safe zone for homosexual and transgendered students. Are other groups receiving similar opportunities?

God's word in Romans 1:26-27 informs us that homosexuality is a sin. I don't believe that He wants to encourage it, but rather minister to those caught in its grip.

If ATCC is going to choose to single out homosexual students for special attention, I believe it would be better to help them find freedom in Christ and understand God's love and healing, perhaps through the local Allies youth group.

Mac Bryant
Alexandria, MN
-- Follow Aaron Rupar on Twitter at @atrupar. Got a tip? Drop him a line at arupar@citypages.com.



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15 comments
sosmpls
sosmpls

Denny writes like a low IQ middle schooler, calls people names like an internet troll, and obviously offended the good people of Alex. But, money talks, he just wasn't that good for business.

And, good for the conservatives, their pressure actually worked, unlike the liberals' repeated efforts to boycott Limbaugh.

DavidFoureyes
DavidFoureyes topcommenter

Stop complaining in public Denny - If you have a leg to stand on, bring it to court (the horseshit that is at-will employment not withstanding, cuz let's admit it, without a contract you're fucked). 

You can bring it to the court of public opinion if you think you get railroaded there as well. Bringing it there first makes you sounds like a crybaby.

ButcherBaker
ButcherBaker

I have visited Alexandria enough in my visits to a nearby lake to know that I'd never want to live there. It's a city, which is better than living in the middle of nowhere, but its isolation from the rest of the world breeds its share of small-minded bigots, and then some.

Leif Lundeen
Leif Lundeen

Alexandria is full of small minds....which is why i moved.

leif
leif

I'm from Alexandria and too many small minded bigots pushed me out of that town. It's decades behind in human compassion. 

_Joe_
_Joe_

Mac Bryant sounds like a whacko.

DavidFoureyes
DavidFoureyes topcommenter

@sosmpls "Liberals" boycotting Limbaugh? Surely you jest. Why would liberals call for a boycott of something they do not consume?

That would be like boycotting eating crayons. Not doing something because it is ridiculous is not the same thing as boycotting.

swmnguy
swmnguy topcommenter

@DavidFoureyes  I gotta disagree with you here.  I agree that there isn't a legal case here.  I don't think that's what Mr. Dalman is saying, either.  I think it's pretty obvious the paper dumped him because of pressure from extremists like this Bryant guy.  When extremists are pushing around the media, I think it needs to be highlighted and discussed.  When people are silent about such things, we get...oh, pretty much what we've gotten over the past 30 years in America.  

St. Ronald Reagan himself couldn't get nominated for dog-catcher as a Republican today because he's too far to the Left.  Heck, St. Ronnie might not even get nominated as a Democrat today, he was so far to the Left by comparison to today's politics.  But the prevailing complaint, rarely challenged, is that the Democrats have gone so far to the Left?  That the Right is somehow endangered in this country?

So while Denny Dalman doesn't have a legal case here, not all right and wrong has anything to do with the law.  If the reactionary nuts are getting their way and running rampant in Alexandria, to the point they can no longer put up with a single columnist who's been writing for decades, I think people should hear about it.

jinxmchue
jinxmchue

@ButcherBaker I agree. Former resident Dalman certainly was (and remains) a small-minded bigot.

jinxmchue
jinxmchue

Good riddance. Your hate and intolerance is not wanted here. Go seethe along side Dennis all you want.

jinxmchue
jinxmchue

@leif I'm sorry you had such a bad experience with the liberals here.

cags777
cags777

@_Joe_ And sadly, he provides a great disservice to the local area Chamber of Commerce.

sosmpls
sosmpls

@DavidFoureyes @sosmpls Just because you haven't heard about it doesn't mean it didn't happen. Mr. Dalman mentioned the Rush  ordeal in one of his whiney letters. Did you even read the article? Ever try Google?

DavidFoureyes
DavidFoureyes topcommenter

@swmnguy @DavidFoureyes I will agree with you provided Denny has no intention of bringing a wrongful termination suit. However, if he doesn't have that case to bring, it calls into question the weight of the claim and makes my point...especially since he admits to having lowered himself into the sewer that is the vernacular of those that don't have the capacity to form a cogent argument.

It is one thing to say that forces outside your business influence your employment, it's another to suggest that the political efforts of a person or persons resulted in the termination thereof. In the business of media, the first it so obvious as to not be worth mentioning, the second is possibly illegal. If there is no proof the second condition exists, I suppose I agree with you that he has every right to bring this to the public, however if there is insufficient evidence to do something about it other than complain in public, it strikes me as crying. It is also possible I may be giving the people of Alexandria more credit than is due. I have no idea.

DavidFoureyes
DavidFoureyes topcommenter

@sosmpls @DavidFoureyes I read it. Were you under the impression that when one liberal opens his mouth, he speaks for them all? How would you like it if everyone thought every time Francisco Franco opened his mouth, he spoke for all conservatives?


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