Dear West Chester,
I wanted to write today as a means of responding to our last issue’s headline article, “Barstool Video Causes Outcry.” To start, I’m nothing but proud of the way that Caroline Helms wrote the issue with the detail and poise of a headstrong, professional reporter. The way we chose to include certain details in the piece – such as the officer’s name – was a decision on the editor’s behalf.
Though the decision was only a couple of words, it was a choice to level the playing field of power that exists between law enforcement, civilians and the press. There lies a pre-existing imbalance in these three dimensions of society. Law enforcement’s domination of the everyday civilian is not okay. The press’ fear of this domination is also not okay. The media exists to be a monitor of power, and any media organization that exists in fear to do just that can not exist with the credibility afforded to an organization committed to honest, ethical journalism.
We decided to include this officer’s name to do what our job calls upon us to do. The Quad will continue to do our job in this fashion for as long as we continue to be a student news service on campus.
The semester is coming to an end, and The Quad will be on our yearly break from printing press until the spring semester begins. As all good journalism does, we will continue to monitor the power dynamics on our campus and in our communities. Our student voices are among the most powerful I have ever seen, and I will never be able to express the pride and joy I experience week after week watching these voices grow stronger by the day.
Have a great rest of the semester, West Chester. Finish strong and we’ll see you next spring.