READER: On Saturday (Feb. 23) my family and I, along with approximately 2,000 other people, gathered for the Bakersfield Day of Resistance, an opportunity to send a message to Sacramento and Washington, D.C. that the Second Amendment of the Constitution is of critical importance to us, and that we will not accept any further infringement of our rights from any source. This is especially true in California, where our Second Amendment right has been trampled by our progressive state government for years. This local event was one of over 100 such events held throughout the nation.
Speakers at the event included State Senator Jean Fuller, Assemblywoman Shannon Grove and Bakersfield City Council member Jacquie Sullivan, in addition to many other excellent speakers. After the event, I saw video coverage on at least three of our local television stations, but, interestingly, not a single mention of the event in the Sunday Bakersfield Californian.
How could that be? Three television stations thought the event was important enough to send reporters equipped with cameras, and devote significant airtime to it, but the Californian apparently did not send a reporter equipped with a simple notebook? Is this an example of the Californian's severely limited ability to field a reporter, or perhaps an intentional decision to ignore a newsworthy event because it did not align with the political views of your publisher and editorial staff? I think the people of Bakersfield and Kern County deserve an answer to this question.
READER: I was unable to attend the Day of Resistance event on Saturday Feb. 23, and expected to read about it in The Californian. Did you just drop the ball on coverage or are you so liberal that you won't cover an event that supports the second amendment. No wonder that the Californian is going downhill. At least some of the local TV stations covered it.
READER: Can only assume by the lack of coverage to the 2,000 Kern residents, two state senators, state congresswoman and an assembly person that you forgot to assign someone the job of covering the 2-23 Rally in support of The 2nd Amendment.
ARTHUR: I'm sorry we missed the story, which clearly was newsworthy.
For some reason none of our assignment editors nor photo desk editors were aware of the rally. The story just wasn't in our weekend plans, unfortunately.
Should we have been smart enough to realize there was a rally? Probably. But we weren't.
A version of this response was originally posted online last Monday night, after we heard from many angry people. One online commenter said four press releases were sent to The Californian. Well -- and we checked -- we didn't get any.
We urge everyone involved to make sure The Californian is notified next time. Our newsroom phone number is 661 395-7384. Announcements also may be emailed to email@example.com.
Don't assume that something posted on your organization's Facebook page will be noticed. There are thousands of Facebook pages in Kern County; we don't monitor them.
Some writers have suggested we deliberately skipped the Day of Resistance rally for political reasons. Nothing could be further from the truth. Although our weekend staffing is small -- very small -- we are always looking for news and, had we known about it, would have sent a reporter and photographer to what obviously was a very big and successful event.
As mentioned, last Sunday and Monday we heard your complaints. Although the events had been on Saturday, we did an article to catch up on the rally and wrapped in some details from similar Day of Resistance gatherings from around the country. The article ran in Tuesday's paper and can be found online at http://tinyurl.com/b9s6xgl This feedback forum is designed to give readers a way to voice criticisms
and compliments or ask questions about news coverage. Your questions --
which may be edited for space -- are answered each Sunday by Executive
Editor John Arthur. On the web:
Follow John Arthur on Twitter @BakoEditor Sound Off