Another CNY blogger is striking out for the infernal regions. Gear of Zanzibar, an occasional commenter here and the guy behind CNY Snakepit (one of the tentpoles of Mohawk Valley blogging) has decided to move to Austin, Texas. His reasons for doing so stretch across a couple of posts at his blog, and offer some serious food for thought.
One of his frustrations involves racism that goes unchallenged by the local media in the Utica/Rome area. I’m not familiar with the local politician he’s complaining about, but I can understand the frustrations with the way that racist attitudes in the greater community are sometimes left to just fester in stagnant, seemingly inoffensive containment pools — just take a look at the “Breaking News” comments threads on Syracuse.com. There’s a large and shadowy peanut gallery that comes out to play whenever someone is shot, stabbed, arrested or involved in a car accident.
Racism is alive and well in Syracuse — and while a politician might not be able to get away with a racist comment in this larger, marginally more cosmopolitan city (yet), there is still plenty of home on the range for prejudice. It is frustrating to see, and I wonder why the authors of the Breaking News posts don’t ever seem to engage the commenters or even simply make their presence known in the comments (not generally
a weakness an oversight among journalists who write for the Post-Standard). Shouldn’t bloggers be commenters too?
Anyhow, it’s sad that it takes a blogger leaving the area to make me post about one of the elephants in Syracuse’s online room. I wish Gear the best of luck in sunny Texas — Austin being the Ithaca of Texas, or so they say. Here’s what they blog about in Austin. I hope Gear won’t lose the bug for blogging, wherever he goes.