I had someone this week call who was offended that one of our newspapers was “going in a direction that offends me as a veteran.” It was because of the photo of the Fallbrook resident that was protesting President Donald Trump which ran in The Village News.
It is crucial for readers to understand, just because we report on something that a person or a group is doing in town, doesn’t mean the newspaper supports that position. When we report someone was raped or murdered, it doesn’t mean we support rape and murder. If that murderer’s family is out on the street with signs supporting them or people are protesting their conviction, it doesn’t mean we have that position. We are just doing our job and reporting the news in a fair and balanced manner.
Free speech is crucial in a representative form of government. Openly gay conservatives shouldn’t be banned from speaking on college campuses and liberal Trump protesters shouldn’t be ignored or banned from the newspaper.
No matter what the political climate is or who is in office, we have a responsibility to report the news, a responsibility appointed to us by our founding fathers.
According to the National Newspaper Association, “The distinguishing characteristic of a community newspaper is its commitment to serving the information needs of a particular community.” We strive to keep the community in which we serve informed, something that we do quite well with our fair and balanced reporting on all issues regardless of the repercussions.
Remember, if Trump supporters are out with signs of support, we will print that too. We just want to reflect what is happening in the communities we serve.
If we start ignore one group or another and choose to not cover what they are saying or doing, where will that end? Would you trust or want to read that paper? There is a real problem with the national/daily papers printing “fake news.” We shake our heads because we receive those same press releases with bullet points, shifty polling, “statistics” etc. and we choose to not print it.
We don’t like everything that we print in the paper, but we are committed to covering as much as we can in a professional, fair and balanced way.