Conservative columnist Christine Flowers is no longer with the Philadelphia Inquirer, according to her:
Sad day. Was let go (I guess "fired") is the word, by @PhillyInquirer. I will miss angering progressives on a more official platform, but at least I can be more open about my feelings in this delightfully respectful and polite venue for politics and opinion . Please follow 😉
— Christine Flowers (@flowerlady61) March 5, 2020
In an interview with Philly Mag, Flowers says she agreed to go silent with her Twitter account, then reactivated it against the Inquirer’s wishes, which is the reason for her dismissal:
Management has addressed this with you in the past?
Yes, under the old editorship, they had asked me to tone it down, which I did. I just stopped responding for a while. But then my social media presence grew. And my social media voice is more feisty than my column voice. I was more “real” on Twitter and Facebook. That caused some waves, and I understand why it did. I represented the paper. They had me apologize to readers several times when certain readers got angry and went to the editors.
And you think that this had a direct impact on what happened?
Oh yes. I have to be honest about it. There was a gentleman’s agreement there, and I broke it. My editor told me that there had been a meeting among a number of editors, and there was a problem with my social media presence and the fact that I reactivated my Twitter account without notifying the powers that be as I had promised to do. It was insubordination. The benefit of having me was outweighed by the pain in the neck that I am.
Flowers was the conservative counterbalance on the opinion page, offering takes that placed her and Will Bunch about 10 million miles apart on the political spectrum. If he was located on Mercury, then she was probably somewhere near Neptune or Pluto. I don’t think she wrote very often, though. On her individual page at the Inky, she’s only listed as the author of five stories published this year, which are:
Pope Francis should channel Pope John Paul II’s forgiveness after Vatican slapping incident | Christine Flowers
No way in hell am I wading into a political mess here; I’m just interested to see what happens next. I’m pretty sure Flowers was the only conservative voice on the opinion page, though I can’t claim to be too familiar with those writers outside of Bunch and Jenice Armstrong. They should probably bring in another conservative voice to represent that side of the political arena.