Editor's Note

The News-Review has chosen to remove a letter titled “Working, tax-paying citizens they are not,” that was published on the Opinion page of Thursday’s newspaper and online.

After reviewing our guidelines, which clearly state not to threaten the harm of another individual, we removed the letter.

We apologize.

(25) comments

springazure
springazure

The publishers and editors of this paper should make a public, sincere apology to the millions of peaceful protesters that were targeted by this letter. There was not a single arrest during the Women's March in Washington or ANY of the sister protests worldwide. Is it that you agree with the sentiments expressed by the letter writer and is that why you published it? You need to do something to make it right. What's it going to be?

CharLT
CharLT

Terry Stafford: no. You are wrong on all counts, both morally and factually.

TNR editors should be fired for their egregious lack of judgment in publishing this lunatic's call to murder people for exercising their first-amendment right to peaceful protest.

Shame on you. All of you.

No love,
A hardworking, taxpaying citizen who protests—and is never "bused in" or paid to do so.

kaydee44
kaydee44

The editors should be fired. They will publish anything and have no regard for libel. When confronted about this last fall, the editor said the new owners said to "just throw out the meat." In other words, we're just a bunch of dogs to be baited. There is no journalism in this paper. It is a scandal rag. If you want the actual facts, you won't get them from this paper.

Amy
Amy

I am shocked and horrified that this letter was printed. It is appalling to encourage violence - this community has experienced the horrors of a public shooting, and obviously has some deep reflecting of its values still to do. The author now has the satisfication of seeing their lunacy legitimized in print. The editorial staff should be fired for this grevious mistake in judgement.

Mom Preacher's Wife Protester
Mom Preacher's Wife Protester

Our democracy is threatened when the media forgo their responsibility to report facts, allow mistruths to be published or fail to critically examine our government and our community. But the letter is actually a symptom of a greater issue. The internet has allowed people to curate their news, creating their own reality. This man is misguided (to put it mildly) and believes easily refutable fake news. He can't see a reality beyond the fringe of the internet. We must all be vigilant in these days and our local papers, perhaps one of the few news sources still "trusted" by our neighbors, must be vigilant.

drmary
drmary

The News Review Letters to the Editor gatekeeper blew it by allowing this letter to take up space in this paper. What a disgraceful example of editorial review.

As our culture coarsens, and comments become more outlandish, we have lowered our collective sense to be outraged and offended. This hyperbolic letter was intended to elicit outrage, but I will not give the author his due. I reserve my disgust for the publishing of this call to murder my fellow citizens, my mother, my sisters and myself.

It is pointless to engage with someone that promotes murder as a means to an end. He has the right to say whatever he wants, but the News Review does not have the obligation to print such an offensive post.

News Review, you failed to do your job

Mogie
Mogie

You summed it up very nicely.

JGH
JGH

Editorial Staff: Your note says you've chosen to remove the letter, yet it remains under your note.

Mogie
Mogie

They removed the letter from this website but what about the paper itself? Are we going to see a retraction in the paper?

PinkHat
PinkHat

I flew from Oregon to DC -at my own expense- to march with the millions of other peaceful protesters in opposition to the incoming administration. This is our First Amendment right. I am a small-business owner who pays taxes, unlike our new President.

In an earlier letter, Terry Stafford claimed the armed Malheur occupiers were 'peaceful,’ and defended their right to armed ‘protest, but now chooses to denigrate the millions of people who marched across the US without a single arrest.

That Stafford would hypocritically advocate murdering his fellow-citizens is troubling enough, but that he would do so in the same city where 9 people were recently gunned down in a mass shooting is the height of insensitivity.

Terry Stafford is free to disagree with the aims of the various protests cropping up around Oregon and the nation, but he should not be given a platform for lies and incitement of murder. Your paper has a responsibility to civility and truth.

Mogie
Mogie

I will be surprised if the News Review even addresses this letter issue. The editor said (via the phone) that he thought the writer of the letter was talking "tongue in cheek". How that makes publishing this violent garbage right I don't understand. I once used the word a word that is not dirty in a letter. The letter was automatically rejected because "Your comment cannot be accepted due to the presence of profanity. Please remove any objectionable content from your comment and try again". But I guess the News Review thinks advocating violence is acceptable.

BornHere
BornHere

Who on the staff of this fine paper thought "Well now, there's a community voice more of us should hear." I guess it's good to know what we're dealing with, but, wow, what a disappointment.

FightIgnorance
FightIgnorance

Here is a letter from the same author condemning the shooting of a violent, destructive protester. Interesting switch. Also, an easy find online, though it is clear that the editors did not think this incite to violence was worth five minutes of Googling. What a shameful thing to publish. I hope the rest of the community will not stand for this. Please end your subscriptions and pull advertising dollars if you want to hold these people accountable.

Grant County sheriff should be praised

It should come as no surprise that Oregon’s “Criminal Justice Division” is investigating Glen Palmer, the Grant County Sheriff, who after actually talking with the Malheur Refuge protesters — wow what a concept — pointed out a peaceful solution was possible and that the residents of his county were in no way in any danger from them.

Instead, enforcement offices from all over attacked a peaceful convoy on its way to a peaceful public meeting, killing one of the protestors. We have seen our sheriff perform very well under national pressure.

Mr. Palmer, the law on the law on the spot, should be praised for his good sense, not investigated for not following the state and feds rather strange concept of justice.

That, after all, was exactly what the protest was about in the first place.

Terry Stafford | Riddle

JK
JK

Publishing this letter is a disgrace to journalism. Your editorial staff needs to evaluate their ethics, and realize that publishing hate speech, including speech that incites murder, is not acceptable. Newspapers should be encouraging the right to protest, not encouraging people to shut down our first amendment rights through cold blooded murder. There is basically no difference between publishing this kind of letter and actively encouraging people to shoot journalists for doing their jobs. The freedom of the press and the rights of protestors go hand in hand. What the heck were you thinking?! Were you thinking?!

JGH
JGH

I support and defend Terry Stafford’s right to express him/herself publically up to the point where s/he calls for the murder of dozens of people.
“How about we shoot a few of this year’s crop – say a dozen at each protest to see how many were bussed in, paid well. Of course we will give all samples an absolutely free same-day burial at sea.” Inciting violence is an exception to the first amendment. It is a crime. To publish this call for the murder of dozens of people is abhorrent and unacceptable.
As a “working, tax-paying citizen’ and an avid protestor, I disagree strongly with Stafford’s claims that protestors are socialists, or “paid rabble-rousers.” The Kent State shooting was a tragedy and Stafford’s claims are not only unsupported but have been debunked.
Why would you publish a letter that is blatantly full of falsehoods and also urges people to MURDER other people? Editors, I can’t imagine what you were thinking.
Sign me,
A Tax-Paying, Hard-Working Oregon Citizen who Protests

OregonRN
OregonRN

I'd like to let you know that people were not "bussed in", nor was there any violence or property destruction during this march. This First Amendment-protected gathering happened in my community, with my friends, family, neighbors, and coworkers. Since you don't live or participate in this community, you have no authority or claims to describe what happened. I am a hard-working homeowner, pay taxes, and have 3 kids in public school. I think it is unfortunate that this newspaper chooses to give a voice to a person who advocates violent, illegal, and immoral actions against Americans and Oregonians.

As an aside, I find it Interesting that this published editorial violates multiple guidelines for sharing comments on this website, as it is threatening, not truthful, certainly not nice, and advocates violence. Might want to look at your policies.

Bryan1234
Bryan1234

This letter should not have been published.

FirstAmendment
FirstAmendment

I have to say I am deeply disturbed by this opinion letter writer and disappointed and confused that the News Review chose this letter out of all the letters you've received to post in your paper. It seems incredibly irresponsible to publish a letter blatantly inciting violence against American citizens exercising their constitutionally guaranteed rights - our FIRST AMENDMENT RIGHT!
What has America come to that this is the level of discourse we are reduced to? Now *killing* your fellow citizens or encouraging others to do so is considered acceptable enough to publish in the newspaper? We don't need Russia to undermine us when we are doing such a fine job of it ourselves.
Mr. Stafford should be DEEPLY ASHAMED of himself as should the Opinion Editor for the Roseburg News-Review. By writing this piece, Mr. Stafford displays his own ignorance and vitriol, but for N-R to give it a public forum is a disgrace on your paper. Especially in light of the not-to-distant tragedy at the Umpqua Community College.
This is not an "opinion" which everyone is entitled to - it is a call for murderous violence on innocent people. Perhaps the FBI should pay Mr. Stafford a visit.

Dreashu
Dreashu

Where is the report link for the letter? It is certainly threatening and abusive.

Dreashu
Dreashu

This is disgusting. I am a business owner in Portland who pays taxes and I marched with my 2 month old baby. Demonstrations for our rights is a founding American value. Resistance of oppression is patriotic. This man is insighting violence and the fact that you punlished it as a paper makes you complicit and liable should anyone take this nut seriously. In Roseburg of all places? Irresponsible. You must publish a front page article in opposition and retraction.

Pat D
Pat D

Suggesting that people be shot? Horrific!

Robert Heilman
Robert Heilman

I'm afraid that I must disagree with this. I really don't think that I and my wife should be shot and have our bodies dumped in the ocean for exercising our First Amendment right "peacefully to assemble, and to petition the government for a redress of grievances."

Observer72
Observer72

Especially in a community which has suffered so much from gun violence, I cannot believe that the News Review has printed a letter so blatantly urging deadly assault on anyone who protests. It seems serious, not just a sick joke. This letter violates the N.R.'s own third rule of discussion: "Don't threaten. Threats of harming another person will not be tolerated." History has shown that there are those here who might actually carry out such threats. Someone at the News Review has totally failed his responsibility to be an "editor" of the Opinion Page.

Mogie
Mogie

Reacting by suggesting or promoting violence is wrong. No matter who says it.

Mogie
Mogie

While I disagree with ANY form of destructive protesting I would never take away someone's right to peaceful protesting just because I disagree with them. Aren't we all entitled to peaceful gatherings? And to suggest shooting someone (unless it is self defense) isn't the answer. We need to sit down with each other and find out why when presented with the same evidence we come to different conclusions. Perhaps we agree on more then we disagree on. But suggesting violence is NOT the answer!

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