Cape Gazette taken to task over column

December 26, 2017

Concerning Reid K. Beveridge’s  Dec. 12 column ( :

I am writing as a subscriber to the Cape Gazette and a Sussex County citizen.

I generally enjoy reading the Cape Gazette and its editorials, but all too many times I find the “guest editorialist” to put to paper nothing more than unthoughtful, often inflammatory comments that are no more valid than any other citizen writing to express their opinion. It is clear that several of these writers have not done the least bit of research or sought facts prior to spouting their “thoughts.”

What truly concerns me is that the Cape Gazette gives them a certain level of credibility simply by highlighting their opinion - their picture, byline and prominence on the editorial page imply that the piece one is about to read has been written by a journalist, by someone who has given the subject thoughtful consideration and one who has grounded their thoughts in fact.

The piece cited above is a clear example of empty spouting. The author proffers his advice from his military service ages ago (has he read that transsexuals will be accepted into the service next year?), admits he has spent little time in schools in recent years. He declares “men changing to women are still men, and women changing to men are still women” - clearly indicating he has researched this topic thoroughly. And then there are the urinals being ripped out, and a “dozen or so guys and one ‘girl’ showering.” Can one possibly bring this important topic to a lower level than this?

Clearly, you don’t need me to point these and other ridiculous statements out - you see them as well. But why does a respected newspaper like the Cape Gazette give writers such as he credibility? Opinion is one thing; giving someone a platform to speak without any journalistic standards is another.

The Cape Gazette states: Accomplished writers appear in the Politics column every Tuesday on a rotating basis to explore the dynamic world of politics at the local, county, state, national and world levels.

Does this piece represent the work of an “accomplished writer?”  Does this piece represent journalistic editorial integrity? Nope.

Virginia Fornillo

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