Cap J: Betcha won’t print this! | VailDaily.com
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Cap J: Betcha won’t print this!

Don Rogers

It’s inevitable with every hot local issue. A collection of stalwarts with a different opinion than what editors express in the commentary sections assumes the paper will withhold their letters and other comments.

Are they kidding? That’s the best stuff we could publish. We’re not afraid of disagreement. We embrace it.

Of course, your facts have to be true ” or at least not wildly at odds with reality. And there are a few rules, such as one letter from one author to run in a week.

Oh, and we actually need to receive the commentary, whether a Web comment or letter, blog entry or guest column. Generally with guest columns, the author should have some standing to share some special insight about it. And we’re not likely to run the same piece as a comment, and a letter, and a blog, and a column. We’ll choose what fits best for the circumstances.

But we’ll find a way to run your piece appropriately, and with the least amount of editing possible. If you are inclined toward whoppers, we’ll need to look at those. Sorry. It may be with an editor’s note; it may be that the author is in such error on something that a sentence needs to come out; and there are times that the commentary in its entirety is unpublishable. Not because of its disagreement with the paper’s position in editorials, but because of more clinical concerns such as libel, invasion of privacy, rank bigotry, that sort of thing. And sometimes a letter or column submission is just too long.

We apply the same criteria to submissions that agree with our positions. Agreement or disagreement, that’s not the point.

You might think some or all of our pundits are commie pinkos, but we really don’t take a Soviet view of criticism of us ” and especially not of me professionally, personally or any other way.

Light me up. The copy desk will likely put a snippet on the front page.

I do not require you to agree with me. I do not require you to like me. I don’t require you to even respect me. I don’t require anything from you.

My requirement is of myself. To say plainly what I see to be the truth and to honestly express my opinions, sometimes bluntly. You can take or leave it as you see fit.

Just be aware that when you think you are being daring or challenging with some variant of “Betcha won’t print this,” just be aware that we are unmoved. As long as you’ve expressed fair public comment ” that is, not lied, libeled or strayed into bigotry or privacy issues ” you’re good.

And we’re all the happier to print your pithy comments if they disagree with our positions.

Don Rogers is responsible for the editorial oversight of the Vail Daily, Eagle Valley Enterprise and Vail Trail. He can be reached at 748-2920, or editor@vaildaily.com. Read his blog at http://www.vaildaily.com/section/BLOG


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