What has happened to The Leader? Not many years ago, we encountered page upon page of news along with hard-hitting editorials and commentary of substance. Instead, the past issue followed a trend …
What has happened to The Leader? Not many years ago, we encountered page upon page of news along with hard-hitting editorials and commentary of substance. Instead, the past issue followed a trend easily observable over the last few months: two fear-inducing front-page stories, with the lead about a head-on crash east of Sequim and the other about an ongoing murder trial. In one issue, I counted no less than five crime stories.
Reading The Leader has become more and more like watching the 6 p.m. news or reading the tabloids. Save for the successful United Good Neighbors drive, last week’s most vital local news was inside. That’s where we learned about the sales tax for affordable housing, developments in the ongoing PDA fiasco, the Port Townsend chief of police candidates’ forum, and another story of front-page import, the Navy’s drive to potentially desecrate our treasured state parks with special operations training. Tuesday morning’s discovery of a dead woman in the homeless encampment, which made it online, will presumably appear next week. But will it be accompanied by the kind of in-depth, heart-wrenching discussion that County Commissioner Kate Dean initiated on Facebook?
The change in values that has accompanied the arrival of The Leader’s current leadership is dismaying. Where has there been any discussion of the national election that the entire world, including our deeply concerned local populace, has watched with a mixture of anticipation and dread? Where is analysis that connects so many of our local issues to funding and program priorities determined on the federal level? A sensationalist front-page story on a murder trial, yet nothing that connects the dots and reports on organized threats to our freedom? The time to refocus, take the lead, and create a paper more in tune with this county’s needs has come.
Jason Victor Serinus