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From the Publisher’s Desk: In pursuit of truth


Dear Readers,

In today's frenetic world of headlines and hashtags, of social media influencers and YouTube pundits, it becomes a daunting task to filter through the cacophony of voices and find the unembellished truth. One would expect that amid this digital era of endless chatter, we'd be more connected, more united. Yet, the exact opposite seems to be happening. The very platforms that should unite us seem to be driving us further apart.

There is an adage that says every story has three sides — your side, my side, and the truth. Lately, however, it feels as though we are becoming increasingly obsessed with the “sides” and forgetting to pursue the “truth.” This obsession has given rise to the pervasive, divisive politics of our era. The sad reality is that this divide is not just affecting our politicians in marble-clad buildings, but it is fracturing the very fabric of our local communities and broader society.

As a testament to this rising division, we at the West Plains Daily Quill find ourselves between the proverbial rock and a hard place. In the morning, we're lambasted for being "too conservative," and by the afternoon, we're labeled "too liberal.” A disconcerting paradox that serves as a reflection of not our content, but the subjective lens of our readers.

It is pertinent, and indeed, our duty to clarify that the West Plains Daily Quill is not in the business of disseminating propaganda, be it of the left or the right. We take immense pride in our commitment to unbiased, factual reporting. We share stories that matter, stories that resonate, stories that reflect the soul of our community. To insinuate otherwise is a disservice not just to our dedicated team of journalists but to the very spirit of journalism.

Our primary allegiance is, and always will be, to the truth. Not a political party, not a special interest group, and certainly not to any particular ideology. It is perhaps an indictment of our polarized times that pure, unadulterated facts can be interpreted through so many different, often opposing, lenses.

It is time for some introspection. Instead of accusing and pointing fingers, let us take a step back and reflect on our own biases. When did we become so deeply entrenched in our own views that any dissenting voice became an enemy? When did our personal beliefs start overshadowing the collective good?

As a community, we must resist the urge to pigeonhole and stereotype. We must refrain from seeking comfort in echo chambers that only reinforce our preconceived notions. We must remember that there is strength in diversity, in different perspectives, in open dialogues, and above all, in the pursuit of truth.

We must also ask ourselves: When did we start seeing what we wanted to see, rather than what was really there? How did we allow ourselves to become so polarized, so divided, that even a neutral narrative became a battleground for our biases?

As we I close this editorial, I leave you, dear readers, with a profound question to ponder: In our relentless quest for affirmation of our beliefs, are we not losing sight of the universal truths that bind us all?

Warm Regards,
Chris Herbolsheimer
West Plains Daily Quill and West Plains Gazette