Letters: Concern, praise, thanks, and respect

Mar 07, 2018

Concerns with previous article

 

Our son Ian has been delivering the Mukilteo Beacon for two and a half years.

It’s been a great little job for him and his customers have been super supportive and engaging with him.

Both my husband and I have gone on Wednesday walks with him and seen the positive relationships.

The Mukilteo Beacon dated Feb. 21 stopped us in our tracks.

Horrified to see the title article on the first page “Student raped, murdered while overdosing.”

This article showed no dignity or respect to this young woman! Irrespective of her situation the writer judged her behavior and felt it was fine to exploit her situation and her grizzly end of life scene.

Our hearts go out to her family, dealing with loss of her young life now graphically exploited by this “community” newspaper.

There are not enough words for us to write that this was completely wrong!

The level of details and graphic descriptions was totally uncalled for and unnecessary for a community paper.

The fact that discretion was clearly not taken shows a lack of judgment by both the writer and editorial leadership.

Remember the adage “less is more.”

School age children are able to read this paper (since the focus is the community).

We understand the realities of our community (good, bad and evil) need to be reported on, but given the audience and that the carriers are grade school kids mostly all between the ages of 10-16.

Clearly the writer and editor didn’t have the skill, maturity or discretion in the composition of the article.

Consider this notice immediate; our son will no longer deliver the Mukilteo Beacon.

Hopefully the editor can send a positive note to the community expressing empathy for the young victim and remorse for the lack of judgment.

Ian will let all of his customers know that he will no longer be delivering.

 

Dawn and Chris Pirie

Mukilteo

Feedback on recent article

 

We have lived in Mukilteo for 33 years and have read the Beacon newspaper since the first issue was published.

We are writing to provide you with feedback about the Beacon article titled, "Student Raped, Murdered While Overdosing" in the Feb. 21 issue. This article and photos show a total lack of respect and absence of ethics for the victim, her family, 11-year-old paper delivery kids, and your readers who range in age from grade school to senior citizens. There is no denying this horrific crime, but your lack of tact and respect in publishing it and placing it on the front page shows your lack of responsibility for this community. What is this kind of article doing in a community newspaper?

Tom and I have enjoyed the Beacon and it's coverage of community news for a long time. Never have we seen such disrespectful coverage of a very unfortunate event. It reads like some kind of voyeuristic and inappropriate tabloid.

Did you choose to write and publish this news event on the front page for shock value or to increase your readership by using shock value? You have our attention and it is not the least bit favorable.

We hope that in the future, you consider other than the sensationalism of such a sad event and instead consider respectful reports that help our community.

The graphic details you wrote in the article were unnecessary and uncalled for.

How many young kids saw and read this article while they were preparing their deliveries? What service did you provide our community with its presentation?

If this is the new trend of The Beacon, keep it. Our community deserves better.

 

Maureen and Tom Hayden

Mukilteo

 

Editor’s Note:

I’d like to offer a short response to the two above letters if I may.

I’m sorry these two families feel this way about the article.

In my view, something like that is worth writing about because it’s an important wake-up call to the community that these types of things are happening.

As my boss Paul Archipley said, “When the news is bad, we feel obligated to report it.”

Everything in my story was courtesy of public records and was also reported by other publications and organizations statewide.

Children can access our papers through either carrying the paper, finding it at various locations or through the Internet. But that can be said for many publications and media outlets as well.

Obviously you feel I crossed a line, and I’m sorry you feel that way.

I don’t like writing about topics like this, but I feel it’s my job because even bad news is still news.

Brandon Gustafson

Mukilteo Beacon Editor

 

 

 

Praise for tough stories

 

I wanted to compliment you on your two extraordinary articles that appeared in the Feb. 21 edition of The Beacon.

The first concerned a local girl involved with drugs and her boyfriend who “allegedly” left her to die after a session of drugging.

He had a friend involved who encouraged him to ignore her distress. He left her alone to die and went to work.

The second was a true, in-depth account of a grandmother in Everett who discovered her grandson was plotting to shoot up his high school (ACES).

You gave us more “gritty" information than I’ve seen on any of the larger local news venues.

It was really chilling that you told so much in-depth on these two compelling stories. We rarely see this kind of reporting in the “Little Beacon.”

You really elevated the publication to the big time.

I would hope that both these articles get picked up by UPI (United Press International) or some other larger news agencies.

You deserve the recognition. Thank you for your investigative reporting.

 

Sherri Brookfield-Jordan

Mukilteo

 

Thanks to Rep. Larsen

 

Snohomish County families should thank Rep. Rick Larsen.

He has again expressed support for Medicare Advantage, the health insurance used by 19.8 million seniors and disabled Americans, including my brother, my partner, and myself.

Why is this important?

Medicare and Medicare Advantage Insurance is effective in helping seniors and the disabled maintain their wellness, health screening, provide free fitness memberships, chronic care management programs, and many other benefits.

Medicare Advantage also removes barriers to care.

For all of us on a fixed income, comprehensive coverage is vital as well as prescription drug costs.

Medicare Advantage provides a cap on out of pocket expenses.

In-home nursing visits and nurse help-lines provide valuable assistance to housebound seniors and the disabled.

Those of us who reside in Washington and rely on Medicare Advantage can’t afford to see the program suffer budget cuts or changes that might affect our benefits.

By adding his voice and the other elected officials who support Medicare Advantage, Rep. Larsen has helped ensure that our health care needs will be protected.

That matters.

 

Kathy Kingston

Lynnwood

 

 

Show respect to all animals

 

I have been haunted all week knowing that a neighbor in Elliott Pointe spotted a coyote near Lumley with a metal trap caught on its leg, trying to move to safety. Not only is it exceedingly cruel to an animal doing its best to survive in an ever-shrinking habitat, trapping is also indiscriminate as to the child or animal caught up in the trap.

It is also illegal.

I cringe at thinking about the suffering this animal has had to endure at the hands of an uneducated person.

The wildlife all around us deserves to move about and find food and shelter in our community.

If you feel intruded upon by wild animals, consider that there are many, many ways to deter their presence where you live that is non-lethal and will cause no harm to others. A Google search will quickly yield solutions to try.

Call PAWS Wildlife Center for advice. Keep pets indoors, especially cats.

Don’t leave food outside. Shine bright lights or use strong odors to repel them.

 

Coyotes are hugely beneficial to our community in helping to control the rodent and rabbit population.

They are clever, reclusive and highly social animals.

Please give them space and report any abuse or criminal activity you see to authorities.

 

Kristin Kohorst

Mukilteo

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