Earlier this week, a member of the Knox community raised concerns about the ways in which TKS operates and fills its Discourse section. This was done through signs hung up around campus and an online post, both of which targeted a specific member of our editorial board. While we always welcome dialogue and suggestions in the effort of improving our campus’ student publication, we disagree strongly with the methods used to do so in this instance. Since this occurred, the individual apologized for the manner in which the ideas were conveyed and a very productive and open conversation was had with members of our editorial board.
We would like to take this opportunity to addressour editorial policies used on community-submitted stories and opinion pieces.
The goal of the Discourse section is to be a platform for students, faculty and alumni to voice their opinions on the events taking place on campus and in the country and world at large.
Just as every other well-regarded newspaper does, TKS reserves the right to decline submissions for any section if they do not meet the specified standards for that section of the paper. For Discourse, this means we expect each piece to refrain from making libelous claims without clear and substantial evidence, as well as our expectation that each piece represents an addition to campus dialogue on the issue it addresses. It is against our ethics and the core purpose of the Discourse section to censor submissions in an effort to portray only a specific slant on issues. Just as academics at Knox requires a lot from students, we recognize the ability of each student to contribute thoughtfully and uniquely to the dialogue on campus.
TKS stands by its standards and is aware of ways in which diversity of thought enriches our paper. Ways in which the Discourse section can print opposing viewpoints include allowing students to come to the staff and present their case, as well as working with editors to find a middle ground. We encourage all critiques, especially for our Discourse section, through an effective and respectful dialogue with members of the Knox community. TKS proudly represents and serves the Knox community and is open to input from all who are willing to contribute.
We understand that when contributing to the Discourse section, writers may be nervous about having their opinions and ideas analyzed by the entire campus community. As developing intellectual scholars, we must continue to challenge ourselves to not only engage with ideas we disagree with, but also to substantially and respectfully contribute to the dialogue on campus, thereby allowing our peers the same opportunities to grow as they have granted us.