On September 28th, a nationally-recognized political pundit, journalist, and Tennessean, Matt Walsh, not only spoke at a rally in the parking lot outside of the Loudoun County school board meeting, but also got on the schedule to speak directly to the board during the meeting. Despite the school board's last-minute rule change in regard to who is allowed to speak at the meetings, Walsh signed a lease to rent out the basement of a Loudoun County resident for the purpose of being able to speak at the meeting.
The Loudoun Times missed an opportunity to thoroughly and objectively report on this event. To me, Walsh's presence at the event was entirely newsworthy and worth mentioning in the September 29th article "Activists continue campaign against transgender policy, vaccine mandates at school board meeting".
Like many of the other school board meetings, this event drew national attention. The seemingly intentional effort to avoid mentioning Walsh's name in the article felt just about as artificially plotted as the school board's last-minute effort to change the qualifications for speakers at the meetings.
The Times has done such a great job of keeping Loudoun County residents connected and informed over the years. I love reading about what is going on in our community. I look forward to completing the crossword and sudoku every Friday (okay, let's be honest, I never finish the sudoku).
But I was disappointed to see a clear instance where there appeared to be an intentional omission in reporting. I think it's these types of decisions that fuel people's skepticism of the media.
Objective and honest reporting goes a long way in helping ensure that our papers and media outlets are perceived as a help, not a hindrance, to our communities.