September 24, 2007
To: Members of the media and the University Community
From: J. David McSwane, Editor in Chief
Re: F-Bush Editorial
The CSU Republicans and others have asked me to resign. While I encourage these groups to submit their grievances to the CSU Board of Student Communications, I will not resign.
We as an Editorial Board made a statement. We stand by that statement, and I intend to defend our right to do so. We feel this statement, albeit unpopular, was necessary in communicating our opinion that it’s time college students challenge the current political climate and speak out.
While the statement was undeniably political, we feel that the more important statement was in our support of freedom of the press and free speech on a college campus.
Our intention was to make a statement in support of the First Amendment by exercising the rights therein. This issue, we think, has snowballed into a national controversy because our use of profanity, which can’t be stopped or punished by the university.
Colorado State University and Student Media advisers have no control over editorial content and, therefore, were not included in our decision to run the editorial. The university does not have the power to slash pay at the paper. The Collegian operates solely on advertising revenue.
I have seen no data as to how much revenue the paper has lost and cannot comment regarding other personnel issues. We will be working to gather more support from advertisers and community members.
As a matter of transparency, I chose to speak with some media outlets. As of today, I do not plan to speak to the media until the BSC decision is made.
It is extremely upsetting to find some media have manipulated my statements. This is, perhaps, a more subconscious reasoning behind our editorial. I think it’s time the media stay strong in a time of secrecy and abridgement of our Constitutional rights rather than spending its time digging up the latest on celebrity divorces or the like.
Our judgment is certainly being challenged, but if standing by quietly while free speech is scorned on a college campus is a step in the right direction, you’ll find the Editorial Board and me skipping in the opposite direction.
We’ve garnered more attention than we ever wanted or were prepared for. We’re students with responsibilities, second jobs and families who have been affected by this media uproar.
I kindly ask members of the media to be respectful of CSU’s daily operations and the operations of the Collegian, which will continue printing.
As a matter of clarification, my investigation into recruiting practices as a 17-year-old has nothing to do with this. That attention had died down, which is how I liked it. In running this editorial, I in no way wished to make national headlines as an individual, but this is the reality that comes with making such a statement.
This was the view of the Collegian Editorial Board, which I could have stopped, but instead supported.
Members of the community who wish to submit complaints can do so by sending a letter to the editor at firstname.lastname@example.org. Advertisers and community members who wish to voice their support are also encouraged to send letters to email@example.com.
J. David McSwane
Editor in Chief
The Rocky Mountain Collegian