Comment and analysis on all things Charlotte

Servatius resigns as Meck Deck blogger

Tara Servatius, the freelance writer who has been blogging on The Meck Deck since July 2011, has ended her association with the John Locke Foundation and the blog today in the wake of criticism over an offensive illustration linked to one of her blog entries earlier this week.

Servatius informed the Locke Foundation this morning that she was sorry she had used the illustration and wished to resign from her freelance writing for the blog, which focuses primarily on the Charlotte region.

The item posted Monday afternoon focused on President Obama’s opposition to the marriage amendment on North Carolina’s May primary ballot. It contained an offensive, Photoshopped image of the president obtained via the Internet.

“I’m embarrassed and angered today,” said JLF President John Hood. “The illustration associated with this blog entry was offensive and utterly inappropriate for our blog or anyone else’s. A reader brought it to my attention Wednesday. I had it removed immediately, but the damage was done. I’m sorry I didn’t see it earlier, and I’m deeply sorry it was on our website for any length of time.”

“The political discourse in our state and nation has grown increasingly coarse, unnecessarily personal, and destructively vitriolic,” Hood added. “This is the kind of episode that can only make the situation worse. We should be able to disagree about controversial issues without it coming to this.”

Hood agreed with Servatius’ decision. “Given the severity of the situation, this is the best outcome for all concerned.”

The John Locke Foundation hopes to have a new blogger or bloggers contributing to The Meck Deck very soon.

Jon Ham is vice president for communications at the John Locke Foundation.

23 Responses to “Servatius resigns as Meck Deck blogger”

  • Mar
    22
    2012

    This is sad and unfortunate. Tara is a wonderful reporter and writer–and I will miss her commentary.

  • Mar
    22
    2012

    Good riddance. I get enough partisan hackery from talk radio (which, not coincidentally, is where she came from).

    Someone in the mold of Jeff Taylor or Pete Kaliner would be much preferred, and better at keeping Locke’s tail out of hot water.

  • Mar
    22
    2012

    Dang it.
    Tara, you’re already missed. Wish you the best.

  • Mar
    22
    2012

    Wow, fired from the radio last year, forced to quite from a lowly blogger job… so much hate to spew, so few jobs to spew it from.

  • Mar
    22
    2012

    When it comes to Pres. Obama, the Democrats, and their supporters the old adage “They can dish it out but they can’t take it comes to mind. If these thin skinned dolts can’t take the heat they should get out of the kitchen. Shame on JLF for not standing up for freedom of speech I expected more from you.
    Furthermore, Conservatives, Republicans, and Christians cannot criticize or disagree with Pres. Obama, the Democrats, the Mainstream Liberal Media, Planned Parenthood, NOW, Muslims, NAACP, Unions, or any other protected special interest group aligned with the Democrats and the Left. What I find disturbing and disgusting is the Conservative Media does not have a spine of titanium at best they have a slinky for a spine. The folks on the right have no problem devouring their own, but they cannot be equally as tough on Pres. Obama or the rest of the Democrats and leftists. I thought the First Amendment guaranteed freedom of speech, freedom of the press, and freedom of religion; I guess I was wrong. However, the Supreme Court did rule that the Westboro Baptist Church’s offensive protests are protected, and SCOTUS has also ruled that pornography is protected under the First Amendment. I guess it is just Conservatives’ freedom of expression that crosses the line and has to be censored and/or shutdown.
    Sadly, most people who run Conservative Media give in to the left and either fire, make folks resign, or suspend them for an extended period of time. This happens because those who manage or run Conservative papers, magazines, websites, or organizations are feeble not fearless. I am fed up with political correctness it is destroying our liberties and our country. Why can’t the folks on the left accept an apology and move on; this is what they expect the people on the right to do?
    When conservatives don’t stand up for their fellow conservatives’ freedom of speech they do the Left’s job for them. By firing, resigning, or suspending people for their freedom of expression when the left and their supporters scream they are offended free speech is chilled and killed which is the ultimate goal of those on the left. Thanks JLF for standing up for freedom of speech and expression.
    Apparently conservative men need to learn to fight like conservative girls because you guys look like a bunch of wimps to me.

  • Mar
    22
    2012

    Poor Tara, so smart she didn’t think fried chicken would be considered racist.Everything concerning President Obama is considered racist.Charlotte is the most progressive city in the south except for Atlanta. Racism will never end until the racists die from old age and blacks accept it.

  • Mar
    22
    2012

    When I saw the picture that was originally attached, I was gobsmacked. I couldn’t believe that Tara would be that stupid. One of the things that made her an interesting figure to have in the local media was that she didn’t spend her time in an ideological cocoon. She’s worked a lot of the same beats as the rest of the local press and had columns in a couple of local alt-weeklies where she wasn’t in line with the rest of those papers’ editorial positions. She knows the left and what it can make out of something like that. Or, she should have.

    kel, just to disabuse you of a few things: This is not a First Amendment issue as there’s no state action to silence anyone. To the extent it involves freedom of speech, the JLF owns this site and can control what’s on it. It didn’t stifle anyone’s free speech, it exercised its own. Further, I don’t have any obligation to support or defend stupidity just because it was committed by someone with whom I may agree politically. What was that picture supposed to accomplish, anyway? Does it somehow help the conservative cause if the JLF has to spend time defending that rather than advancing its own ideas? From a purely tactical point of view, posting that picture hurt more than it helped. If you disagree, I’d be interested in hearing how. Before you do, that the left does things like this and gets away with it isn’t a justification, it’s whining.

    That said, I wish her well and hope she can find another outlet. From being quoted on the biggest radio show in the country to being bounced in a week. Hell of a thing.

  • Mar
    23
    2012

    Tara, you were midguided on so many things, however before
    you blog again check facts. Life is an open mouth that will
    spill over with different objects that are hard to swallow.
    Best Wishes

  • Mar
    23
    2012

    Why don’t you try “lowly blogging” troll and good luck to you. I am sure you one smart cookie alright. She can always go work for MSNBC, Fat Ed Schultz, Randy Rhodes or HBO where they make hate speech a regular item. But then again you wouldn’t know hypocrisy even if if you hit you in your flat face.

  • Mar
    23
    2012

    I saw it and and was floored. What was she thinking. I even made a snide joke about it in the comments. My God. You just brought leftist looney attention to the site by being mentioned on Rush. That picture only confirmed their preconceived notions.

    Mary. I believe your facts are ‘Jedi’ facts. They are only facts “from a certain point of view”.

  • Mar
    23
    2012

    So you guys were surprised by this? Tara has long focused on the “self-inflicted” problems of the black community from her perch of privilege in both her writing and broadcasting. (Creative Loafing readers, for example, grew tired of every other column being about a black criminal who should have been in jail, etc.) Her obsession with race has been very evident to those of us who have followed her career and so it’s not surprising that she’d eventually cross the line. And of course even her non-apology is an attempt to blame others, as if recognizing the “fried chicken” stereotype is in fact an indication that it’s others who are wrong and that’s she an innocent victim of the liberals or whomever.

    Tara is a skilled writer and reporter and it’s too bad her racial hangups have ruined a promising career. When you’re posting stuff that’s too right-wing for even John Locke it’s time for some soul-searching.

  • Mar
    23
    2012

    Dancing on graves. It’s what hate-spewing people do.

    Next time you resign, get fired, or get laid off, maybe you’ll also receive some advice, back handed compliments, and lots of ill-wishes and sarcasm from people who think they are better than you.

    Or maybe you’ll mature.

  • Mar
    23
    2012

    Good riddance to a dumb bimbo that is running out of places to spread lies and hate-speech.

  • Mar
    23
    2012

    And pointing our the decades of liberal failure in the black community strikes fear in the hearts of the modern plantation owners other words known as the new slavery that the danimals of the world can not and will not tolerate when it comes from an outspoken conservative who always backed up her “obession” with facts.

    And right on cue, poster 9:49 who couldn’t carty her water when it comes to intelligence managed to get one sentence hacked out a keyboard calling her dumb and bimbo which she is anything but.

    At least she knows who her father is..

  • Mar
    23
    2012

    My point proven with Bahamut. Looks like maturity is never an option with the newbies. Just more of their own hate. Spewing.

  • Mar
    23
    2012

    In the seven days proceeding Mar 21, 17 homicides in Chicago.

    1 youth shot in Florida.

    Conceal Carry heavily regulated in Chicago.

    Where’s the outrage pointed?

    Tara was good at tweaking the race mongers on the right and left because so little is done by the paper of record locally.

    But I come to this blog for discussion focused locally. Rail line discussion, CMS discussion, and other city shenanigans…

  • Mar
    23
    2012

    Snow their very D&D name ‘Bahamut’ suggests someone on Public Assistance trolling in their mother’s basement.

    The yogurt boy is just a left wing hater who would like to send us all to room with Ivan Denisovich.

  • Mar
    23
    2012

    Tara is no racist. The photo was tasteless, but the slurs being tossed around about Tara are far, far worse.

  • Mar
    23
    2012

    Nothing makes people madder than the truth.

  • Mar
    24
    2012

    Tara, come on. I read your resume’. You are a UNC graduate. You’ve been in the work world since 1996 or so, in very public jobs. And yet you say you had no idea that publishing an image of a black man dressed in silly clothes over a bucket of fried chicken would strike many folk as racist? No one believes you, not even the avowed racists.

    Here are the conclusions one might reasonably draw from what you did:
    1. You don’t give yourself enough rest;
    2. You suffered a nearly debilitating failure of judgment;
    3. You don’t know any black people;
    4. You are a racist and know it;
    5. You are a racist and don’t know it.

    You would allow everyone to give you the benefit of a doubt if you had attributed what you did to something like numbers one or two. Even people who are not stupid screw up and do stupid things. But you didn’t, and instead pled ignorance as to the meaning of hoary racist stereotypes, and you expressed sorrow that anyone misinterpreted what you did. In doing so, the only conclusions you left to us are either three, four or five. I’m going with five, as this explanation seems to best explain your act and so many of the uncountable near-hysterical comments and writings about the President since the day he was elected. In the future, maybe it would be best to remember the larger world differs from the talk radio world you seem to which you seem to have grown too accustomed.

  • Mar
    26
    2012

    Tara–ignore most of these critics who now come out of the woodwork to kick you while you’re down. Most don’t know what they are talking about and don’t know you.

    For a long time I have considered Tara a respected acquaintance/friend, and still do.

    Pick yourself up, brush off the dust and dirt of this error, and move forward step by step.

    Many of us wait eagerly to see where life takes you next!

  • Mar
    26
    2012

    N.Ray,
    Who are the avowed racists you speak of?
    Maybe you can get off your high horse for a moment…

  • Mar
    27
    2012

    Tara is a great reporter. Her resignation is a blow to free speech. So called conservative and libertarian organizations are too quick to cave and not defend their own. Her dismissal is shameful and cowardly.

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