Let me be clear: we will be the biggest cheerleader of this community when good things happen. But we are not the public relations mouthpiece of the region. We will keep our readers informed and we’ll be here to hold our elected officials accountable to the taxpayers they serve.
I’ve heard people say that it can’t be good for a prospect to come into town and read negative headlines like, “supervisor arrested,” or “Why not East Mississippi?” Maybe they’re right. But it’s not our job to “manage” news, or headlines for that matter, to suit prospects. Again, it’s our job to report the news. We can’t report things that don’t happen.
At the end of the day, no one wants to see this area prosper more than I do. I truly love this place. If I didn’t, I wouldn’t have left the Gulf Coast to take this job. I want to see us succeed. But I will never compromise my charge to keep our readers informed.
This community that I love will never grow as long as we continue to focus on ways to keep things from the public — in an effort to put a positive spin on everything — instead of focusing on ways to make this area a better place to live.
The good news: we have a lot of good, hard-working officials in this area that can help us reach our potential as a community.
On a side note, while we report the news, we also have a charge to take stances on certain issues editorially on the editorial page. And this past Sunday, we urged local elected officials in neighboring counties to put aside territorial differences and work jointly on economic development — similar to the Tupelo area’s PUL Alliance.
As of today, several officials have contacted us to let us know they think the meeting is a great idea (Clarke County Board of Supervisors as an example). We have offered to host the meeting. We will keep you updated as this progresses.