MELBOURNE – Several Christian organizations and some local newspaper editors met recently to try to improve relations. Representatives from Christians For Life, Holy Name of Jesus Catholic Church, and local chapters of the Christian Coalition and American Family Association, met with Florida Today on Dec. 6, 1995 to discuss the newspaper’s bias against Christians and conservatives.
Florida Today editors acknowledged that relations between the newspaper and Christians “have room for improvement” in 1996, but skepticism about actual improvement remains among some Christian organizations and churches in Brevard. “We’re moderately optimistic,” said Gerald Lostutter Jr., who represented the AFA and Christian Coalition. “During the Spring of 1994, Florida Today promised to improve relations. But in August of 1994, some Christians were forced to boycott Florida Today after it refused to fairly report on conservative candidates and continued to libel Christians.” Florida Today’s staff editorials have usually endorsed liberal candidates, who have consistently used the term “radical extremists” to describe all conservatives, particularly Christians.
“Florida Today probably would not have printed biased stories if the Christian references were replaced with Black or homosexual references,” observed Rod Jagos, director of Christians for Life. When the pro-life ministry has been falsely portrayed by Florida Today, pro-abortionists have used their cars to run Christians off U.S. 1 next to Aware Woman Abortion Clinic where they picket, Jagos noted. Brevard’s Christian organizations will monitor Florida Today and decide whether they should promote a boycott of the advertisers.