Letter: Advocate-Messenger staffers do their job well

Published 12:33 pm Tuesday, October 15, 2019

From Milton Reigelman, Danville —

Last week, the general manager of the Lexington Herald-Leader, Peter Baniak, announced that in these increasingly challenging times for newspapers, the Herald-Leader will soon stop publishing a regular Saturday paper.

With a third of a million people, Lexington is probably safe from the plight of 1,300 other U.S. communities that had a newspaper in 2000 — and that now have none.

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Thomas Jefferson said newspapers were a democracy’s only safeguard. Today, this small community with two governments and two school systems needs a vibrant newspaper. How else will we have the information we need to help us understand and sort out important local issues?

The thing that impresses me most about The Advocate-Messenger is how such a tiny staff manages to do such a professional job in covering the Danville City Commission and Boyle County Fiscal Court meetings, the most important local cultural and economic news, Kentucky news of most consequence to our local community — and still has time for a real editorial page with local columns from both right and left, home-grown editorials on issues crucial for the civility and health of our little town, and a zesty letters section from a wide variety of readers.

I suppose you could find information about Boyle County crime, house prices, weddings, fires, sports, deaths, etc., if you spent your morning searching the web, but even those disheartening hours wouldn’t introduce you to features on the interesting people we live among that we’d never know.

Truth to tell, some years ago I was once so disappointed in the Advocate that a friend and I started a quarterly “newsletter.” No need for that today. To reporters Bobbie Curd, Robin Hart and Derek Brightwell, to Publisher Michael Caldwell, and especially to Managing Editor Ben Kleppinger: thank you.