Sunday, May 26, 2024

An Open Letter to the Arkansas Democrat-Gazette

Dear Arkansas Democrat-Gazette:

Emblazoned on the front page of the paper you print and deliver 365 days a year is a portion of the Seal of the Great State of Arkansas. It includes an eagle with a scroll in its beak with the Latin phrase “Regnat Populus.” That phrase translates to “the people rule”.

The President or the United States has, on more than one occasion, declared the press the enemy of the people. The Boston Globe has called on news organizations across the country to run coordinated editorials on Thursday, August 16, in response to the President’s frequent attacks on the news media. Editors from nearly 350 newspapers across the country have committed to that effort.

Some of the most respected and widely circulated newspapers in the country have committed to taking a stand in their editorial pages, including The New York Times, The Dallas Morning News, The Denver Post, The Philadelphia Inquirer, and the Chicago Sun-Times. The list ranges from large metropolitan dailies to small weekly papers with circulations as low as 4,000.

Participation does not require each paper to run an identical editorial, mind you. The plan is for each paper to write their own editorial on the common theme that the President’s attacks on the press are alarming and uncalled for.

Nor are the editorials only something that liberal-leaning outlets are doing. “The request also suggested editorial boards take a stand against Trump’s words regardless of their politics, or whether they generally editorialized in support of or in opposition to the president’s policies.”

The Times of North Little Rock is participating. The Van Buren County Democrat–hardly a bastion of liberal thought–is participating.

Yet, oddly, your paper does not appear in the list of participants.

So, I must ask: Will you stand in solidarity for a free press, or will you sit on the sidelines in silent agreement with President Donald J. Trump, conceding that you–and, by extension, your media colleagues at KATV, KTHV, KARK, and countless other newspapers, television stations, radio stations–are, in fact, enemies of the people?

You have one of the loudest voices in the State of Arkansas.

Use it.


Matt Campbell

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