Over this past week, a lot of controversy has surrounded Affinity due to old tweets from our founder that resurfaced. Many fellow writers have wrote amazing articles explaining the situation and separating themselves from the controversy. Therefore, I do not feel the need to justify anything or explain myself, however, I would like to say that the resurfaced tweets do not represent my views. Affinity is a site with a diverse group of writers and everyone has different opinions and backgrounds. This causes people to read one article they disagree with and immediately hate Affinity Magazine as a whole.
That being said, I have recently noticed immense hatred towards free press and journalism. People such as President Donald Trump have given journalists a bad name. President Trump has stated many times that companies are “fake news” and shouldn’t exist even when they are a credible network. Journalism is significant in democracies because it helps the people stay informed. Without modern news, the American people would never know what’s going on within their government, which may be how President Trump would prefer it.
Our founding fathers wanted to insure we would have freedom of speech for years to come. They wanted us to control our government. Journalism is instrumental to this. Journalists often challenge the words of politicians and other public figures which can help uncover the truth in many cases. Unfortunately, most networks do lean towards one side of the political spectrum. This means that most liberals watch CNN and most conservatives watch FOX. People tend to enjoy news networks that say things they agree with. However, we have to learn to listen to other opinions and not just immediately discredit people who disagree with us.
Journalists challenge people like politicians. This allows for the truth to come out in many cases.
After the controversy this week, many people said that Affinity is an awful site that no one should read because we post untruthful articles. Affinity is a new-wave of journalism that has given a voice to teenagers. The articles you read on our site are not written by super professional journalists who are extremely experienced. They are written by teens who have a passion for writing and a unique story. For years, journalism has been something that was highly-filtered and written by people who weren’t exactly in touch with society and the newer generation. Sites like Affinity offer a voice to people who otherwise would not have one. This means there is a diverse group of voices and opinions. Therefore, I do not agree with everything posted on our site, and you don’t have to either, but at least those opinions are heard. It allows for open-ended conversation and new ideas. Affinity Magazine is blazing an alternative trail in the journalism community. Journalism should be honest and open to everyone. Everyone should be able to have an active conversation about issues that are important to them, even teenagers.
A democracy cannot exist without free press. The news needs to exist even if you disagree with the way it is presented. This is why we must stop demeaning our journalists, even amateur ones like on Affinity. It is okay to disagree, but it is not okay to insult and demean someone simply because you don’t like their opinions.
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