Friday, September 24, 2010

Award-winning SWC Sun Shut Down

Twenty-six press awards, and what does the college do to the Southwestern College Sun? Cancel the first issue.

As reported in Southwestern Board Must Go!, twenty-six reporters just received San Diego Press Club Excellence in Journalism Awards. The administration has responded . . . well, it hasn't responded. Nothing. No press release. No "way to go." Nada. (And given that faculty union president Andrew MacNeill sent an email informing SWC Superintendent/President Raj Chopra and PR man Chris Bender at 6:40 this morning, there's really no excuse.)

Shortly afterward, The SWC Sun released the statement, "Publishing Crisis Update: Issue #1 Canceled." The statement points out that district PR claims that they were working to quickly resolve the crisis were "misleading or false."

Also revealed in the statement are four areas of concern:

(1) Suspension of the printing of the Sun.

(2) The threatened arrest of Branscomb [faculty adviser to The Sun] and three students who were stopped by campus police for removing a journalism computer from the journalism lab.

(3) The district's plan to remove the Sun's link from the home page of the college's website.

(4) An administrative prohibition of campus employees from talking to Sun journalists without the permission of district spokesperson Christopher Bender.

By now, the first three are still shocking but familiar to most. The fourth is downright flabbergasting.

How many times does the administration and Board of Southwestern College have to be taken to task for First Amendment violations? And how can they be stopped?


Watch for mailers that should be arriving soon, and please share and display. Let's Save Our Southwestern College!

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