Don Your Way: Political bias? We cover ALL sides of the debate in Doncaster!
One of the things that often gets levelled at local newspapers (this one included) are accusations of political bias.
Now, as you know, I’ve always tried to steer this column clear of politics and the dreaded B-word, but with the General Election campaign in full swing, its darned near impossible to avoid the subject.
And naturally, with the countdown on to December 12, those accusations of favouring one side over the other have started to surface once more.
Which entertains me greatly. Because nothing could be further from the truth.
In the past few weeks and months, I’ve written about the Labour Party. I’ve written about the Conservative Party.
And the Liberal Democrats. And the Brexit Party. And the Green Party. And others.
This paper has covered visits to Doncaster by Boris Johnson, Jeremy Corbyn, Jo Swinson and Nigel Farage. We’ve covered both the good and bad of those visits, the appreciative welcomes and the not so warm welcomes.
I’ve covered pro-Remain and pro-Leave stories (yes, I said I wasn’t going to mention Brexit, but hey, needs must) and yet, still the accusations pour in.
Many readers seem to have convenient sets of eyes that seem to miss when we’re talking about the party or the side of the debate they happen to agree or disagree with.
We’re constantly reminded that Doncaster voted Leave as if that’s the only side of the debate that should be discussed. That’s like saying Doncaster has three Labour MPs so we should never discuss other political parties.
The Free Press doesn’t just represent 69% or 31%, it represents 100% of readers and tries to cover all sides of political debate and political argument.
Just because we’re writing about Jeremy Corbyn doesn’t mean I or others who work here automatically support him.
The same goes for the Lib Dems, Tories, Brexit Party or whoever too.
If Nigel Farage or Boris Johnson get praise or abuse or protests, we’ll cover that as much as we’ll cover about what they are saying too.
Naturally, whatever we do or say will invariably fall on deaf ears among many.
In a long career, I’ve managed to upset all sides of the political spectrum and been accused of bias for and against virtually every political party going.
And that, to me, suggests that we’re doing things right.
Putting the spotlight on all and not necessarily worrying about the consequences of daring to shine a light into dark political corners.
Whatever your view, or whichever party you support, we’re here to listen to and cover all sides.