Sunday, 18 January 2009

Mississippi paper apologises to readers for ignoring segregation and civil rights issues

A newspaper in Mississippi has on the eve of the inauguration of Barack Obama run a remarkable apology to its readers for ignoring segregation in the southern states of America and failing to fully report the struggle for civil rights, Editor & Publisher magazine reports.
The Meridian Star apologised in a leader column which concludes: "There was a time when this newspaper – and many others across the south -- acted with gross neglect by largely ignoring the unfairness of segregated schools, buses, restaurants, washrooms, theaters and other public places.
"We did it through omission, by not recording for our readers many of the most important civil rights activities that happened in our midst, including protests and sit-ins. That was wrong. We should have loudly protested segregation and the efforts to block voter registration of black East Mississippians.
"Current management understands while we can't go back and undo some past wrongs, we can offer our sincere apology -- and promise never again to neglect our responsibility to inform you, our readers, about the human rights and dignity every individual is entitled to in America -- no matter their religion, their ethnic background or the color of their skin."

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