Hate Speech and Free Speech: A Discussion

The University of North Alabama hosted a daylong event on Nov. 29 called “Let’s Chat.” It was designed as an opportunity for the campus community to come together and talk about sensitive or difficult topics in a safe environment. I had the privilege of starting the day with Dr. Katie Owens-Murphy, an assistant professor of English … Continue reading

Applauding as Your Rights are Taken

A clerk in Putnam County, New York, has placed himself smack in the center of a somewhat controversial episode that has set journalism, press freedom and privacy at odds. It also has a nice “rule of law” angle to it. Take a look at this report from Poynter, because it’s serving as the informational basis … Continue reading

Don’t Board the News Media Scapegoat Train

What happened in Newtown, Connecticut is horrific. It is an event that has bruised our national psyche. Like thousands across this country and this world, I’m sad, disgusted and angry about it. What happened there is unconscionable. As journalists, how do you possibly report on something that is unspeakable? It’s an exceedingly difficult story to … Continue reading

Dad was Right … Again

I think I was in middle school when my dad dropped the following profound bomb on me. “Not everything you read in the paper is true,” he said. What in the world? (I had not yet developed the coarser vocabulary of a journalist.) I was not convinced. It’s a newspaper. It’s news. It’s supposed to … Continue reading