John Huddy: Reporter and Fascist Collaborator
Reprint from Republic de Santa Fe: Vol. III number 1...April 1, 2003.
Tensions Showing As Reporter Loses It At Peace Rally
by Donado Coviello
On Thursday, March 20, 2003, hundreds of people had gathered in front of the Santa Fe Post Office to protest the war. A small group of people in a circle spoke about the war. A sixteen year old high school girl said she “felt so bad” that her friends had gotten suspended for demonstrating at their school that she just had to cut classes to come to this peace march. A reporter for the Albuquerque Journal North, John Huddy asked the girl, “What’s going to happen to you…will you be suspended?” She answered, “I don’t know, I think so.” Huddy then asked the kid, “So what’s your name?” John Coventry, one of the 5 or 6 people in the circle, said to Huddy, “Don’t ask her that.” Huddy angrily turned to Coventry and said, “Why don’t you get out of here, Coventry?” Coventry shut up for a minute.
At one point, Coventry tells the two high school girls that they are “the future,” and that he had gone through “this whole thing before.” The reporter Huddy interrupts Coventry and tells him, “Can’t you see I’m working here?” Huddy then asks the girls, “Say we liberate Iraq and all that, do you think it will do any good?” Coventry laughs out loud and tells the girls, “See, just him using the those words, ‘we liberate’, shows his point of view.”
“You’re way out of line, Coventry!” says a furious Huddy.
“People have to know who the enemy (of democracy) is in this country (a censored, controlled, mouthpiece mass media”, Coventry responds.
Now the conversation is getting very loud. Huddy asks Coventry, “Is this about me? Is this personal? You have a problem with me?”
Coventry pauses and says sincerely, “No” and again, more firmly, “No, I don’t have a problem with you, this isn’t about you.”
A taller John Huddy yells over the head of Coventry to other people in the group, “John has a problem with the media.”
“Just because you’re the media you can’t come in here and…” Coventry is interrupted as the reporter Huddy puts his notepad in his other hand and suddenly grabs Coventry’s arm tightly, trying to pull him away from the group.
Huddy pulls Coventry’s arm and giving him a hard look says, “Come ‘ere, I want to talk to you man to man.”
Coventry looks down at the guy’s hand gripping his arm, looks up and says, “You do that again and I’ll deck you.”
Now the level of discourse sinks, with Coventry yelling, “This is AMERICA, we’re standing in AMERICA!” punctuated with an ever louder chorus with anbimated gestures. Huddy follows with a refrain of, “You’re way outta line, you think I’m stupid? You’re acting like I’m stupid. You think I’m STUPID?”
One of the girls leans in toward Coventry and says “I get what you’re saying, but…”as the other girl steps toward Huddy saying, “I think it’s personal.” Other people interject, one woman saying something like, “We can’t hear you (both) because you’re (both) too loud!”
Covenry responds a couple of notches down, “I can talk quiet,” as he opens his arms, turns and gives a politically correct hug to a guy standing there with a woman.
At one point another woman steps in and yells very loudly, “This is how WAR starts. THIS IS HOW WAR STARTS.” Ms. (name withheld) hen points to a video camera she’s carrying and says, “I’ve got it all here.” Coventry says, “The war HAS started,” indicating back and forth from himself to Huddy. He continues, “and this is part of it.”
The encounter ended rather clumsily with Coventry offering hugs to one of the girls; taking a half step forward (stepping on Huddy’s foot and stumbling); offering an apologetic hug to Huddy; and after receiving a rebuff from Huddy, Coventry then got a hug from the man to his right.
There was some more scattered conversation among the group, but basically Coventry and Huddy walked off ‘cheek by jowl’ separating a few feet up the road. Huddy headed toward a counter-demonstrator standing to the side and Coventry went straight ahead to his car.
Then a uniformed “Federal Protective” officer stepped out from the sidewalk and said to Coventry, “Excuse me, ah, how you doing today, Sir?” Coventry folded his arms and answered, “Good.” Silence for a second and again the officer questions Coventry, “So, how you doing?” Coventry laughs, “I’m doing great. It’s a great day.” The officer starts to ask again, ‘what’s up?’ and Coventry cuts him off, nods toward Huddy and says, “Listen, if that guy comes to one of these things, he’s gonna hear stuff.”
As Coventry turns to leave, the Federal officer tentatively puts out his hand and then pulls it back as he looks off to the side where Huddy was and where Coventry wasn’t going, telling Coventry, “Don’t go there.” Coventry walks ahead, and as he passes within 15 feet of Huddy, Coventry puts out his hand, offering to shake hands with the reporter. Huddy says, “I’m not going to touch that.”
Without saying a word or missing a step, Coventry walks away.
The real story about John Huddy comes after the confrontation with John Coventry at the peace rally.
Coventry walked away from Huddy and went to his vehicle parked at his favorite free parking spot at the Santa Fe Reporter.
Huddy walked back to his office at the Albuquerque Journal North. Coventry drove directly to Huddy's office to talk to the reporter's immediate boss, the city editor, a very cool guy named Mark Oswald.
Coventry explained to editor Oswald how the reporter Huddy had grab his arm. Coventry actually demonstrated on the editor's arm the aggressive physical nature of Huddys assault precipitating the exact response on Oswald's face that Coventry was looking for. Oswwald said he would talk to Huddy and get his side of the story.
Driving home I happened to see Huddy walking toward his office. Having just vented to his boss I felt like 'enough said... incident over' and I flashed Huddy the 'Peace sign. Huddy glared back at me. I thought, 'What a jerk.'
It was less than a week later the I received a visit from a summons server. It seems the largest newspaper in the State, The Albuquerque Journal, its publisher and that wimp John Huddy were suing me for a restraining order. What a fucking joke.
The charges grew from allegedly assaulting their baby reporter by "touching" his chest with my fingers to "repeatedly poke"and threatening him. In the declaration to the court shit head John Huddy Jr. said that I said about him that he (Huddy) was "another example of media that has been taken over by the 'conservative, rightist front.' " Fuck, even when there was a time when there was a "front" I didn't believe in it no matter what "front" it was. Man, I don't think I ever used either of those two stupid words "rightist" or "front" - no less fucking together
But back to the story, Coventry decide to defend himself in Court. He studies the pleading from the Albuquerque Journal to District Court Judge Hall and finds all kinds of shit wrong. So Coventry gets a copy a generic response pleading and pretends to be Perry Mason.
(end part one)
John Huddy Jr., Santa Fe Chief of Police Bev Lennen, Judge Hall and a couple of Bigshot Lawyers.