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Editorials

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By Matt Heller

Executive Editor

Journalism: the relentless pursuit of the truth for the public good 

What would the world look like without objective journalism? Where would you get your news? How could you trust it? 

Many people today question the validity of mainstream media, denouncing everything that doesn’t fall in-line with their beliefs as “fake news”. A.G. Sulzberger, the publisher of the New York Times, said that today’s notion of fake news has become an excuse to delegitimize factual reporting. This seriously harms the flow of information when the credibility and reliability of journalism are impacted. 

We live in a society that largely allows the unrestricted flow of information. Wrapped up in the Bill of Rights, freedom of the press is one of the most concrete rights that we have as citizens. It’s hard to find anything else that has endured without change for the past 228 years. 

In many parts of the world, journalists work every day in fear, reporting in societies where the government will not allow news that questions authority. America’s free press is a role model to the rest of the world, so actions taken against our system influences and affects people across the globe.

Not all news is good news. Frankly, there is not enough good news in the world. But we have the protection of the constitution that says we can report on this bad news. And we must. Pretending struggle, crime, loss and other hardships doesn’t exist, or choosing not to talk about them, undermines the duty of the journalist and the expectation of society. 

We came to St. Michael’s because we saw something in the school that would lead to the betterment of ourselves. We have stayed here because we love the school and the surrounding area. But as in any situation, there are times of disagreement and disappointment among peers in the greater campus community. Like any publication, the Defender must acknowledge these concerns, whether it’s a decline in enrollment or the presence of racially-targeted events on-campus. We honor and respect our ability and freedom to provide you with this coverage in a way that we hope promotes further knowledge and discussion.

You don’t have to be a seasoned journalist to bring awareness to societal topics. Sometimes, a fresh perspective is the best perspective. This semester, the Defender only had seven editors. This, simply put, isn’t enough manpower to provide you with the caliber of news reporting that we strive to put out in each and every issue. When our staff decreases in size, the different facets of campus and the broader community that we can to reach are also cut short. 

The publication needs your voice. These are desperate times in the world of journalism, but there is hope. 

If you value writing that seeks the transparent transmission of information, consider the opportunity to help. While the main goal of a newspaper is to provide its readers with the news that impacts their daily life, we also value creative writing that has similar impacts.  

We would love to have you, as a member of the St. Michael’s community and a member of a free press, to help continue our relentless pursuit of the truth for the public good.