Southern Newspaper Columnist Admits Calling Michael Brown an ‘Animal’ Who Had to Be ‘Put Down’ Was a ‘Factual Error’

Photo: Robert Cohen-Pool/Getty Images

Romenesko highlights what’s now probably the most popular thing Charleston Daily Mail editorial writer Don Surber has ever scribbled, but not because of its trenchant insights. In a blog post on his personal website titled “Why I stop listening when you say, ‘police brutality,’” Surber, who (still) has a job at a real West Virginia newspaper, writes, “My initial reaction was Michael Brown deserved to die and I was right,” presumably based on new leaks in the case. But wait, Surber may have been premature in some of his conclusions.

Here’s the beginning of the column as it reads now:

UPDATE: I made a factual error. Michael Brown was not an animal but a man. Big. Brutal. High. His death was a justifiable homicide and not a putting down.

This summer I had an epiphany as I watched packs of racists riot in Ferguson, Missouri, in support of a gigantic thug who was higher than a kite when he attacked Ferguson Police Department Officer Darren Wilson, who unfortunately had to put this animal down.

Blogging is not for everyone — some people need an editor to make their racism more subtle.

Update: Surber has now pulled the entire post, but it lives on here because the internet is forever.

Southern Columnist Calls Michael Brown ‘Animal’