THE Aberdeen newspaper, the Press and Journal, has announced it is to no longer report the activities of a protest group – on the grounds it is not local enough.
In an editorial in Saturday’s edition of the paper, it claims the Tripping Up Trump group – which is against plans by US entrepreneur, Donald Trump, to build a golf course, hotel and housing complex on nearby Menie Links – “has operated under a cloak of anonymity and cultivated the impression that it is composed of ordinary people concerned at the perceived damage the development would do to the coastline”.
It continues: “Now we know differently. The group is orchestrated and financed by people whose home and work is largely well away from the north-east of Scotland. Its co-ordinator, though originally from Banchory, now chooses to live in Glasgow, while its legal adviser, website designer and several leading members also hail from the Central Belt.”
The paper does not dispute there are local people involved; in an accompanying article it notes, for instance, ‘activist’ David Milne, who does not want to sell his home to make way for the development.
But its editorial concludes: “This newspaper has given a voice to all those who have wished to become involved in the debate about Donald Trump’s plans. That courtesy was extended to Tripping Up Trump in the belief that it was bona fide group of local environmentalists. Today, it has been withdrawn.”