12 January 2017
A recent news story posted on the Fluvanna Review’s Facebook page polarized the community.
When news broke that a former teacher was arrested on misdemeanor charges of contributing to the delinquency of a minor and providing alcohol to a person under 21 years of age, some of the commenters on our Facebook page came to the suspect’s defense. In the process, some criticized the paper for reporting on his arrest.
Our news article, which each of the commenters presumably chose to click on and read, contained little more than the information present in the sheriff’s office press release. Yet we were accused of slander, insensitivity and dragging the accused’s name through the mud.
Because this man was, by those accounts, a popular and caring teacher with a local family, the Fluvanna Review ought to have exercised sensitivity and quashed the story – or so many of the commenters said.
The danger behind this perspective is too immense to be ignored.