As the publishers of local news and media, we have a large number of details to consider every day, and we are also human beings with opinions and faults. We have a lot of responsibility to the general public, and being that our print is housed as the local record in libraries and historical societies, we have a responsibility to the past as well as the future. It also means that we are forced to look through a lens that considers a lifetime of information to make the community better, now and forever.
That being our purpose and our place, we resist human tendency to lean into support on the right or the left, and simply work to make the community better with what we print. That puts us in the unique position to upset both sides of the aisle in a single sentence! We resist defending questionable action by the business community or government officials. We simply report the facts as they are available in our news, and we report our opinions and perspectives in our columns — we rarely pull punches, if ever.
We accept the full weight of our decisions, each and every day. It is our job, and it is not a safe job. We work in a risky business every day and we are proud of our team and our decisions — when we are wrong, we promptly admit it, and when we aren’t, we don’t.
We welcome feedback, criticism, and praise equally. All feedback is weight we must carry, whether it is criticism or praise. We take an inventory of our actions and it forces us to question our motives — is what we published a response to praise or criticism, or are we publishing our best effort in Making Communities Better Through Print™?
Our lowest form of existence as publishers is to write something simply to earn praise or avoid criticism. Our highest and best use of our opportunity in this life we are blessed with is to write bravely, with due diligence, integrity and honor. We probably land somewhere in the middle on any given day, but we never let go of our mission to MCBTP™ or our effort to reach our highest selves.
Most of all, we hope to come across as human — a stretch, we know. Really, we just want to make sure that we create a model of news and information that supports the community needs in whole. Our efforts have already saved our local newspapers (and we are being tested by the COVID-19 health crisis), and there is no substitute for those. Online-only publications are missing the soul of print, that it is not for clicks and views, but for history — our community is blessed by a strong support for The Paso Robles Press, online and in print.
We did not just decide to get into publishing, we were given the opportunity by something far more powerful than ourselves — we were recently asked what is this higher power that we reference. Let’s just say it is fair, just, loving, and in charge. We just accept and follow, without asking too many questions. We know that it is put on us to trust it, and to continue Making Communities Better Through Print™ as long as that is authorized.
So far, it’s been an uphill trudge. We’re not at the mountaintop, but if that is what is in store, we are up for the challenge. What we keep finding with every step is the road rises to meet us.
Thank you for taking this journey with us. Together, we can and will get through this together — we don’t have any other choice.