Journalists Shouldn't Take Sides.

Author:Norfleet, Gregory
Position:Comments - Letter to the editor

I'm hesitant to agree with this column. ("Business of News: Stop Naming Killers," April 2019) Yes, I hate the fact that shooters crave and enjoy publicity that comes from seeing their name in print, the web or on TV. However, you write, "Put attention on the innocent and not on the guilty." This ignores a fundamental practice in journalism: We call them "suspects" until a jury declares them "guilty." To assume the police have the right person is not objective journalism, even if the evidence appears overwhelming. We are not here to take sides, but to report the truth. Can you provide us some practical steps to take to minimize this publicity while still giving readers the full story? Keep in mind that just about everyone arrested has family and friends also looking for objective journalism in our work, not a presumption of guilt. On the flip side, we cannot give the families of victims any false hope that the suspect will be found guilty because of passionate...

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