Theft, attempted censorship will not silence us

Evan Watson/The News

The staff editorial is the majority opinion of The Murray State News Editorial Board.

If you normally pick up a copy of The News on your way to class, you may have noticed they were hard to come this week. That’s because editions of The News went missing from the academic side of campus this week with no rhyme or reason as to why.

We know what you’re all thinking – “What’s the big deal? Isn’t the paper free?”

Not for us. The staff at The News pays its own way. We put our paper together with minimal aid from the University every week. Funds that come from advertising sales make all of this possible.

We raise the money and we produce the paper – and while we do give it to you, the reader, for free, we kind of take it personally when someone, or a group of people, go out of their way to make sure that you won’t be able to read it. It’s not only theft – it’s censorship.

Evan Watson/The News

Evan Watson/The News

In stealing a free paper to prevent you from picking it up and browsing inside, the intention of the culprits could not be clearer. They don’t want you to know what’s happening on campus. Something that we published hit a nerve with someone, and they aim to take it out on us by taking it out on you.

We’ll leave the speculation up to you as to who, how or why this happened.

We have filed a police report and will continue to monitor the situation in hopes of catching those that would steal from you the knowledge of what’s happening on your campus.

We believe you have a right to that knowledge, and we believe we have a right to make sure that you’re informed.

If the person or persons involved in this heist believe that stealing our papers will cause us to back down from reporting controversial issues and taking stands on those issues, they have another thing coming.

You do not scare us. You cannot intimidate us. We will continue to take on those in power and those with influence at Murray State and we will continue to take them to task when we feel they make boneheaded or misinformed decisions.

You might not always agree with us or like the positions that we take, but it’s our job. That’s how the free press works.

It is disturbing that in 2013 someone or a group of people would deliberately try to intimidate a college newspaper into silence or try to prevent a story from being widely read by its students, staff or faculty.

In a nation such as ours, with such a strong tradition of freedom of speech and expression, this kind of behavior is unacceptable.

We do not engage in censorship at The News, nor will we ever. We report the facts and publish our opinion and the opinions of others on those same pressing matters.

We will not stop doing that. We will not be bullied into silence by anyone or any group of people.