Smith, Empire provide an open forum to all

Posted: Friday, February 22, 2002

Those who criticize Empire Publisher Don Smith for speaking out on the issues fail to realize the critical difference between news reporting and news analysis.

Readers have their right to disagree, but to attack Smith for saying what he thinks is wrong, and based on false premises. Smith has every right to analyze the news in an editorial. He didn't forfeit his First Amendment rights by accepting the publisher's position.

By printing his critics' scathing and unwarranted attacks, Smith demonstrates his commitment to providing an open forum to folks of all political and philosophical stripes - even when his critics get their facts wrong - as did Aurah Landau and the good Professor Power from Montana. Smith didn't withhold news, he printed it and then critiqued it. That's what the Op/Ed section is all about - opinions and news analysis. Get it? Rather than attack Smith for speaking out about mining, Empire readers should take a hard look at the veracity of statements offered by environmental lobby and their supporters.

Guy J. Crockroft

Juneau



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