What Do You Think?

Posted: Sunday, June 29, 2003

The Opinion Page is an important avenue of free speech. Letters to the Editor should be unlimited. It is one of the best services the Empire provides. A dialogue between readers and the paper and between citizens in the community is informative and valuable in a democracy.

I voted for once a month, although I actually believe in unlimited. Some people write more easily than others and have lots of opinions and could easily become unpaid columnists. Allowing unlimited entry to the letters page could turn into free advertising and marketing for one person or group's focus, giving the appearance of popular opinion. During exceptional times, the editor or publisher should have the option of temporarily changing the limits.

Some limits need to be set for submissions to the Empire. I get tired of reading (name omitted) right-winged baloney.

There needs to be some limit, otherwise people like (name deleted) can write nine letters in a 30-day period, which he did. But, it needs to be reasonable. If you want to print at least one letter per day, then you should make it once a week.

In a perfect world there should be no limit. The reason I didn't vote for "no limit" is I have been in debates with people who will repeat the same thing over and over. For that reason I would support a limit of once a week, but I would like to add "per subject." If someone has something interesting to say on a variety of subjects, I'd like to hear it.

Getting a dialogue going in the Anchorage Daily News is next to impossible because of their one letter per person per month policy. Imposing a one letter (per) person per week policy would encourage people to pick their topics carefully.

No limits. The ability to critique the issues is a citizen's fundamental right and encourages freedom of speech and of the press, while tending to neutralize any established power structure that likes to quietly make policy from behind closed doors. Perhaps the current tempest over frequency of individual publication will inspire the more timid among us to participate.

There is no point to putting a limit on the number of letters to the editor one person can submit.

I'm very tired of reading the continual harangues of (name deleted). He uses up more editorial space in the paper than all the columnists combined! Several letters a week are just too many. If limited to once a month, he would be forced to choose those issues that are truly important to him, and save the rest of us a few headaches.

I appreciate everyone who takes the time to write to the Empire. It's great to share ideas and opinions. However, I think the Empire should limit someone's published letter to once a month.



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