Monday, February 19, 2007

Another editorial in support of HB 1307

After some initial resistance from some members of the professional media to support House Bill 1307, the Student Free Press Bill, more and more publications are going on the record in support of the bill. The (Spokane) Spokesman-Review is the latest, with this editorial.

Among the highlights:

"Student journalism is an arena where young people can and should learn the value of bold public discourse. Unfortunately, many administrators get nervous when that happens in their buildings. Too often they restrain expression rather than nourish it. Which is why SHB 1307 is needed. ...

"It's hardly a radical concept, and it's already recognized in general under several sections of the body of regulations known as the Washington Administrative Law. Securing the concept in statute is the next step for Washington state to reinforce a First Amendment truth: Freedom of expression means little if it can be used only when authorities approve."

For the record, professional media with staff editorials supporting the bill now include the Spokesman-Review, The USA Today, The (Tacoma) News Tribune and The (Everett) Herald. Additionally, Seattle Post-Intelligencer Associate Publisher supported the bill by testifying at the House Judiciary Committee and writing a column.

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