Journalism is a discipline of collecting, verifying, reporting and analyzing information gathered regarding current events, including trends, issues and people. Journalism, in reporting the facts, is also concerned with the search for truth. Regarding the controversies that have been recently surrounding the University of Saskatchewan’s student newspaper, the Sheaf, I feel that this ultimate search for truth has been obscured by poor reactions on behalf of my fellow students as well as university personnel. The issue has become more than just a comic of undeniably poor taste; it has become a politicized issue that has divided observers to the truth of the matter.
Peter McKinnon’s email was the real “poor judgment” in this case, not any editorial decision. The comic received print space due to a communications error and was never intended to see print. By bringing this issue to the attention of everyone as a case of poor decision-making, the true story has largely been withheld from the general student populace. Reporting the issue as more than it is, as an attack on religion and personal beliefs is hardly the truth of the matter.
There has been talk of a full out attack on the Sheaf, from both students and non-students. These attacks range from taking the mandatory fees of the Sheaf off of students fees, to shutting down the Sheaf altogether, and in some extreme cases, threats of violence.
The Sheaf is a valuable University institution. Aside from being a free classroom in a University that has no journalism program, it provides the students with a voice, a forum in which to rally under and a place for our individual and collective truths. We need to feel safe in searching for our truths and the University is one such institution that provides us with that
space. By removing the student newspaper, you will only inflict more harm than good.
Please don’t let this error affect your reason. The Sheaf apologizes for the severity of the error, not as a malicious attack or political agenda, but as a genuine mistake in which we can all learn from.
The Editor of the Sheaf, Will Robbins, had to learn the hard way, at the price of his position as well as attacks on his reputation and his family.
Knee jerk reactions do nothing to save grace. Getting to the truth of an issue is and has always more valuable than the placing of blame and punishment. We can be appeased by the truth of the matter, not by making more people suffer needlessly.
Please keep your minds and hearts open in your search for the truth.
4th year Arts and Science student