Capital Gazette columnist: Journalists aren’t enemy of the people, they are the people


join us now with Terry Smith a contributing columnist at the Capital Gazette Terry thanks so much for being with us we are so sorry for your loss I know you lost a very close friend Rob hyacin Gerald Fishman just tell me about them that’s true I worked regularly with Gerald Fishman who was the Gifted writer in a conscientious terrific editor Rob hyacin was a delight very funny man bikers famous brother Carl iason and just a pleasure to know and work with and to be around and it is there a huge loss show me the others just horrific people they were targeted because at least Gerald and Rob occupied editor’s offices on one side of the wise open Newsroom that was totally vulnerable to a shooter there was no security whatsoever you simply walked into what is a big office building turned right left there are two glass doors which he shot fly through and then there’s a big open news room with all together a hundred and seventy people in there although you don’t see them all right away he was very deliberate in the shooter was in to the left and down the row of editors offices first Rob Gerald and then to the office of Rick Hetzel the senior editor the top editor by chance was 3 hours away in Ocean City and the office was empty the rest of the shooting took place right there in that in that is rough as it is because of the community I think part of what makes the Capital Gazette is that it is part of the fabric of that Community correct I think you’re really right about that I think the architecture the layout and the openness we’re deliberate if it was an effort to make the paper and its people open to the community now obviously they’re going to have some grave security concerns but I think you’re right I think it was symbolic when I saw the paper published this morning I have to say I wasn’t the least bit surprised still it took my breath away I wonder what your reaction was when you saw the Capital Gazette public near hours after 5 if its employees were murdered it was stunning stunning to me not just the headline not just the pictures across the top but if you looked inside read the editorial page blank and the first line we are speechless today and then last line and then the last line is we will publish tomorrow for breeders that they might be better citizens that struck me as well that’s the mission of that paper very very effective he was on his way back yesterday 3 hours away in Ocean City and from the first moment he was determined to publish this morning call that I got on his case because that’s what a newspaper does that’s what journalism is have not listen to anything for the last couple years to have not witnessed the changing in this country do you think that played a role here or do you fear it puts journalism at-risk yes it’s totally speculative check that add-on Ramos the shooter obviously going on we’re in an era of repeated mass shootings did either of those facts stimulate the shooter to do what he did yesterday I cannot say just spoke with it please cheap minutes ago here this morning he told me that they are still not receiving any useful information from the shooter Rama’s he has been arraigned and jailed on no bond but right now he’s not talkin I don’t know if there was a direct connection there but we do know and what you know obviously from your war is that journalist or not the enemy of the people correct of the people they are the people part of the people and you’re my obviously biased Bill their function is really important in a time especially like this when from the very top there is a full scale war on the press and War on the First Amendment if you like and so I think it’s never been more important and in some ways never more difficult that sums it up perfectly never more important more difficult Terri Smith we thank you for being with us we are very sorry for your loss this morning my pleasure
Contributing columnist to the Capital Gazette Terry Smith remembers his five colleagues who were killed during a shooting at the newspaper.

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