The new editor of The Concord Journal, Cheryl Lecesse, should be commended for her refreshing openness to permit voice to a variety of opinions. What therefore follows is pertinent only to former editors.
The Concord Journal is perhaps representative of most community newspapers nowadays owned by corporate conglomerates, which dictate news, especially local, be happy-face in nature. The Concord Journal refuses, seemingly, to report stories that counter Concord's dubious happy-face. It seems to have become an organ of the Chamber of Commerce, as opposed to one of the community. A few things it has refused to cover include my arrest and incarceration in Concord for expressing non-violent anger in public and the police running me off the grounds of Walden Pond on several occasions, one for having a non-violent dispute with a park ranger, another for merely standing silently with a sign: "No Free Speech at Walden Pond." (see Thoreau for a detailed account of the arrest and Walden incidents). It also refused to report on my protest in front of the opening of the new Concord Poetry Center and publish my open letters to Henry David Thoreau, quite critical of local suburbanitic Concordians. Moreover, it refuses to interview me as editor and founder of a Concord-based literary journal, The American Dissident. Why? Instead, it prefers interviewing new funeral parlor directors and according full-page spreads to local silver-trinket artisans.
More recently, The Concord Journal, refused to publish my opinion with regards the sudden removal of the public bulletin board in Monument Square and subsequent replacement by a Chamber of Commerce-approved board that now requires official permission for posting. Instead, it ran a self-congratulatory piece with a large photo of the backslappers, that is, of those responsible for diminishing free speech and expression in the Town of Concord. Surprisingly, The Boston Globe published both my opinion and photo in an article on that board (see below). Compare the relative fairness of the Globe article with the incredible bias of the one published by the Concord Journal (see below). Finally, one must wonder why newspaper editor Maureen O'Connell and staff journalist Betsy Levinson would publish such a biased, unbalance report. Aren't responsible journalists supposed to seek both sides of stories? One must also wonder what effect an army of such biased journalists might eventually have on the American democracy.
Regarding the new Concord bulletin board, which gravely limits free speech opportunities in town, nobody else but me, it seems, gave a damn about the removal of the old board that permitted any posting. Why don't those Concordians, who are up in arms about the US Patriot Act, give a damn? Well, I posed the question, but not one of them deigned to respond.