By Mike Ramsey, owner
It’s no mystery that I am extremely anti-Weekly Mailer. I started The Voice because I felt that Jay Lenkersdorfer and Paul Lyons have constantly used their paper for bullying people like the Petersons, Jon Anderson, Terry Greenman, City Council members, County Commissioners, The Library, School Boards, and Public Employees with personal attacks and anonymous half-truths over the years. What many don’t know is that I told Jay and Paul years ago that if they didn’t stop printing anonymous attacks on members of our community and if Jay didn’t step down from his position on city council while he was Publisher/Editor of his company I would start a competing newspaper. On the flip side, I told them that if they would clean up their act, I would become their biggest supporter, and help them any way I could.
The rest is history. Since that time we have been the fastest growing paper in the community and The Weekly Mailer has dropped in size and advertising. Even with their drop in revenue and loss of market share, they have not changed.
Lately, their target has been Dr. Carolyn Hondo, the Burley High School Principal. Mr. Lenkersdorfer has written his column against her and then either personally authored or allowed multiple unsigned letters to the editor attacking her. It is all too familiar of the times he did the same thing in our local politics and other community events with little to no remorse.
Dr. Carolyn Hondo wrote a very personal rebuttal against the accusations that were made against her in the Weekly Mailer and sent it to all local newspapers for printing on July 29th. I know this because we were all copied on the same email. I found it no surprise that Mr. Lenkersdorfer and Mr. Lyons didn’t print it. Instead they continued to publish multiple rebuttal letters attacking her. Now, I am not writing this to say Dr. Hondo was wrong or right on her stance, but did she deserve to be silenced from her accusers while they instead allowed space for three more letters attacking her without being able to stand up for herself?
I wonder when our community will stop allowing The Weekly Mailer to continue bullying its way through the ranks of our cities, counties, hospitals, and schools with opinions compared to factual reporting?
I wonder when local advertisers will stop complaining that they have no control over what Mr. Lenkersdorfer and Mr. Lyons publish, but continue to fund the anonymous letters, personal attacks, and yellow journalism with advertising dollars?
I wonder when Mr. Lyons who has apologized to multiple advertisers for Mr. Lenkersdorfer’s doings will stand up for what he knows is right even if it means leaving the company that he co-founded.
In the words of Edmund Burke, “All that is necessary for the triumph of evil is that good men do nothing.” Evil is defined as being harmful or injurious and causing misfortune and suffering. The Weekly Mailer seems to constantly display these poor characteristics more frequently than any amount of good that it has brought our community.
My dear Mini-Cassia, the time is coming when you are going to have to make a choice. You are going to have to stand and let your voice be heard for anonymity or accountability. For journalistic integrity or yellow journalism. It’s clear that The Weekly Mailer is never going to change their tune. So, what will you do?
Publisher, The Voice