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Boycott the Sentinel: Over 500 Voices Opposing Alito Ignored

Boycott the Sentinel: Over 500 Voices Opposing Alito Ignored

Despite the Santa Cruz Sentinel's editors protestations of attempts at fairness, their record is well-known to those in the community.

As of Wednesday, January 25th, the Santa Cruz Sentinel had published zero letters to the editor by those who opposed the Samuel Alito nomination. According to MoveOn,org statistics, members of the community have sent over 500 letters to the editor at the Sentinel in opposition to the nomination of right-wing extremist judge Samuel Alito to the Supreme Court. As of Wednesday, the official nomination process had already begun. The Sentinel saw fit to publish two editorial statements on January 12th and January 17th, essentially favoring the nomination of Alito, yet printed nothing else to counter this position.

Why hasn't the Sentinel printed any letters of dissent, especially since they have certainly received them all by now? When Mike Rotkin was quoted in an article on Tuesday, his letter to the editor was published the very next day. Could it be that those at the helm of the corporate media empire who own the Sentinel are calling for a suppression of articles coming out against the Alito nomination? This can be effective by controlling the headlines of major news searches, such as Google and Yahoo, which tend to set up their news pages based on the frequency of keywords.

If the Sentinel has such little regard for Democrats, Independents, Progressives and anyone else who is coming out against the Alito nomination, then Santa Cruz County, which is overwhelming progressive, needs to cease funding the Sentinel in any way. This should translate to not only to canceling your subscriptions, but also by encouraging local businesses to take their advertising dollars elsewhere. After all, why would anyone want to advertise with a paper that alienates the majority of the population? Perhaps it won't stop their Republican propaganda or shut them down completely, but at the very least, it could cause them to take a loss in this market.

Here is the original article from
Nice work, Deirdre.


532 letters to the editor. ZERO published.
Format for printing
Submitted by djardin on Wed, 01/25/2006 - 4:33pm.

We have long known that the Santa Cruz Sentinel is run by folks with a Republican bent, and that they have a tendency to skew the news in favor of Republican positions.

But until now, we haven’t known the full extent of their editorial bias. One of the biases is in censoring letters to the editor. Since the hearings on Alito began, the Santa Cruz Sentinel has not published a single letter to the editor against the nomination.

According to political action, MoveOn members ALONE sent 532 letters to the editor in Santa Cruz County, and 2,722 members signed the petition against Alito. In all, actions were taken by 2,910 MoveOn members.

Yet the Sentinel HAS NOT PUBLISHED A SINGLE LETTER against the nomination written by their readers.

If you have written a letter to the Sentinel, please forward it to Deirdre Des Jardins, and/or post it on the website at our forum. You can get an account by registering at the link on the left sidebar.

You can also post your letter on the Sentinel
forum and at Santa Cruz Indymedia

Deirdre Des Jardins
Santa Cruz for Change

New Comments are disabled, please visit


Re: Boycott the Sentinel: Over 500 Voices Opposing Alito Ignored

Yup, it sucks!

Some call it the scent-anal,
other more forgetful folks call it the senile,
I just call it crap, or to steal from that "radical" paper on campus, an excellent fish wrap.

Re: Boycott the Sentinel: Over 500 Voices Opposing Alito Ignored

How is what the Sentinel does any different then this website selectively choosing what to post? Censorship!

Re: Boycott the Sentinel: Over 500 Voices Opposing Alito Ignored

Hippo-grits does have a point. Since the decision that something is 'offensive' is purely subjective, having moderators/editors who exist on a plane above the commentor/submitter only creates an environment conducive to censorship. I understand that the goal in censoring content is mostly positive, but it has hugely negative side-effects.

For Indymedia to be really effective (and non-hypocritical) it needs to be ran as a purely anarchist (online) community. Anyone care to discuss this further? I've always believed that before you try to change the world, you have to take a good hard look at yourself.

Re: Boycott the Sentinel: Over 500 Voices Opposing Alito Ignored

Nice to know scimc is getting read by Friends of the Owners of the Santa Cruz Sentinel. However, it looks like this conversation has taken place before.

"Wait a minute. If we should boycott the Sentinel for biased reporting, shouldn't we boycott IMC as well? The official IMC policy is to favor liberal and progressive angles. I dont see students against the strike being given fair and balanced coverage. I don't see the Metro being given equal exposure. Nor Campus Republicans being interviewed."

1) Unlike any other local news outlet, SC-IMC is an open-publishing newswire. In other words, if you don't see something on our site and believe there should be a story, photos, audio, whatever - go out there, cover it, and post it. We don't have paid staff and all the stories come from independent volunteers who choose what they cover.

2) SC-IMC makes no impossible claim of being "objective" - something that can not be said about The Sentinel. Indymedia acts as an alternative to the corporate press, offering space to those that are traditionally denied. If you seek to understand as many views as possible, I'd urge you to continue reading SC-IMC, many other outlets, and do your own research.

3) Unlike The Sentinel, SC-IMC does not have a long history of encouraging the oppression of communities (especially indigenous, chinese, and chicano) in the Santa Cruz area.

4) Can you link any where in our editorial policy that says we "favor liberal and progressive angles"?

Boycott the Sentinel: Over 500 Voices Opposing Alito Ignored!


Re: Boycott the Sentinel: Over 500 Voices Opposing Alito Ignored

In no way was I calling for the boycott of sc indymedia. I also wasn't in any way implying that indymedia is on the same level as the sentinel. I like how I come on here with a slightly opposing view and I get someone calling me a "friend of the owner of the santa cruz sentinel". I guess it's better than what I thought was a definite possibility-- the entire comment getting deleted.

Hell no I don't read the sentinel. I also thought I made it fairly clear that my ideologies are mostly aligned with that of traditional anarchism. The fact of the matter is that several members of our community have had comments that weren't "racist/sexist/homophobic/oppressive" (in my opinion) deleted from the website. The racist/sexist/homophobic part is fairly obvious. I wouldn't want any of that here either. The part that is slightly ambiguous is the "oppressive" part... because from a different point of view even a critical mass bike ride could be called oppressive.

Re: Boycott the Sentinel: Over 500 Voices Opposing Alito Ignored

"have had comments that weren't "racist/sexist/homophobic/oppressive" (in my opinion) deleted from the website."

Perhaps the comments were a duplicate or off topic?

"a critical mass bike ride could be called oppressive."

Nope, critical mass bike rides are not categorized as opressive here on Santa Cruz IMC.

Re: Boycott the Sentinel: Over 500 Voices Opposing Alito Ignored

So why were my last 2 comments deleted? They were not offensive in any way, nor were they duplicates. Just a friendly question -- this one doesn't need to be deleted.

To: Somajun Kie

Somajun Kie, your comments are off topic. If you are trying to reach SC-IMC editors, then send them an email at scimc (at)

Hopefully they continuing hiding posts and comments that are off topic, such as mine and yours ;-)


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