…And neither should you. Jeannette Boner, General Manager of Teton Valley News wrote a lengthy editorial last week that was filled with schmaltzy and subjective, if not false, rhetoric. While the images she casts of coming home to loving children greeting her with glee is touching, it has nothing to do with the facts. Then she addresses the concerns that conservatives have complained about for years.
First Boner states conservatives complain she is censoring their voices. She points to a letter from Tony Goe who is past chair of the Teton County Republican Committee. She claims, “His letter was skating a journalistic line that I needed more time to vet” so she did not print it. Further, “his letter’s purpose is to proliferate division and ultimately damage the community.” Having worked pretty closely with Tony, I am sure that wasn’t his intent. Tony has spent years doing community service because he cares a great deal. Now its 3 weeks later, is it in today’s paper?
Then she declined a letter from Andre Billeaudeaux, (author, How the Redskin Got Their Name; Pennsylvania State “Redskins” Expert) based on its commentary of a national newspaper story that addressed our high school’s student newspaper. Comments about that paper were a no-no. However, what she fails to note is that according to Billeaudeaux, “… The Teton Valley News – has aggressively censored fact-based and positive Native American material by two book authors.” (Himself and Eunice Davis, a Dakota Sioux, from Spirit Lake tribe in North Dakota). They both claim “to have posted basic factual information on the TVN site which was removed”…and he further states that “Eunice was banned. …So it‘s come as little surprise to many that the Idaho Redskins’ servicing newspaper, TVN, not only removed online fact-based public comments from a Native-American Sioux book author but banned her entirely from their platform leading into an important-and expensive—decision whether to eradicate their 90-year old Redskin Warrior symbol”. This was never mentioned in Boner’s article.
Boner goes on to complain that “all criticism has been relegated to closed Facebook pages” so she is unable to respond. Her complaint continues, “I guess this is convenient for the narrative some in the group want to create.” Really? Really? She is free to join most groups at any time. In fact, an admin of one group stated she was a member but decided to leave. Her husband also stated online that she had no interest in joining. Boner has since informed me that she was only referring to the Save the Redskins site, but her article did not note that.
Unaddressed in her article was the most significant complaint conservatives have…biased news coverage or no coverage of news having a negative impact on the liberal agenda. In the article she wrote about the Save the Redskins meeting where uninvited Vice Chairman, Ladd Edmo, of the Shoshone-Bannock spoke came to the stage. But nowhere did she mention that he and his friends filibustered the meeting for approximately 45 minutes thus blocking a orderly conclusion by the original group holding the meeting. Citizens just walked out.
In conclusion it is interesting to note a quote by Billeaudeaux of Noam Chomsky:
““To keep people passive and obedient is to strictly limit the spectrum of acceptable opinion”. So it ‘s come as little surprise to many that the Idaho Redskin’s servicing newspaper, the TVN, not only removed online fact-based public comments from a Native-American Sioux book author but banned her entirely from their platform leading into an important-and expensive—decision whether to eradicate their 90-year old Redskin Warrior symbol””.
Editor's note: The editorial in the June 6 issue of the TVN addresses Boner's inability to access the Save the Redskin Facebook page, a closed group driving the local newscycle, not any other conservative closed Facebook group. Seeking out access to closed Facebook groups to respond to criticism is ultimately not the responsibility of the newspaper. Feedback is always welcome at email@example.com or by calling 208-231-8747 or by visiting the office 75 North Main Street in Driggs. Additionally, Boner did ask Tony Goe for the intent of his letter. -- Boner, General Manger of the Teton Valley News.