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Does the FLS show its political stripes?


Date published: 11/28/2012

Does the FLS show its political stripes?

Freedom of the press is one of the four powerhouse entities necessary for maintaining a free and strong republic. The press is the watchdog of our nation. Through factual reporting and exposes, citizens gain awareness of social issues and political action.

What happens when the press is no longer neutral, but instead becomes a promoter of an agenda? Is it a free press, or merely a mouthpiece? Is it the watchdog of the nation, or political lapdog?

Basic journalism teaches that answering "who, what, where, when, and how" is the tenet of for expository writing. The red pen boldly slashes any word signaling an opinion in reporting.

Does The Free Lance-Star have a red pen? Is undisguised partisanship the only acceptable script? During the election campaign you consciously advocated for certain candidates.

Initially, I gave you the benefit of the doubt, thinking the FLS would give equal space to opposing viewpoints. This is slanted reporting even on the editorial page when the editor sponsors one political position.

Prior to the election, the FLS stopped printing subscribers' politically based letters to the editor, a reasonable decision considering that the majority of subscribers appeared to be conservative voters (note precinct-by-precinct results, Nov. 8), and many FLS advertisers are small-business owners.

The FLS then proceeded to promote its own chosen political pundits, even outlining on Election Day favorites it advocated for public office! ["We Endorse ," Nov. 6]

Editors, re-examine the purpose of the press. Shed the lapdog persona. Choose to lead the pack with journalistic integrity.

Tamara Q. Jones

Rhoadesville