|Bakst applauds paper’s decision|
|Friday, 02 March 2012 17:56|
I could not agree more with Nancy Kirsch’s Feb. 17 column (“Anonymous opinions don’t deserve airing”) that called on people to have the courage of their convictions and sign their names to letters to the editor. She is absolutely right to insist on names – real names, not pseudonyms. The case she wrote about involved Temple Emanuel-El clergy – who showed leadership – and two young women who showed courage by openly professing their love and commitment. Kirsch had the good judgment to publish the story. This offended someone’s sensibilities, but not enough to stand up and be counted. The person would rather send in an anonymous letter that takes potshots from under a rock.
Sadly, anonymous communications, especially email comments about online stories, have grown in recent years. A reader has no way of judging the credentials and motives of these cowardly correspondents. Many times I have written signed letters to media outlets encouraging them to require letter-writers to be identified and/or to ask the publications to explain why they allow anonymous communications. I haven’t gotten very far.
I am not referring here to reporters who quote anonymous sources in order to yield information the public needs to know. Rather, I am referring to readers who want the luxury of venting opinions without taking responsibility for them.
Kirsch is on the right path; she should stay there. If the paper chooses to allow online readers’ comments, please continue to apply these high standards.
M. Charles Bakst