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Scorn for Paper’s Policy

Editor,

That Laguna Beach young teenager who’s mother was arrested last week for a DUI, child abuse and endangerment was further abused by your newspaper’s decision to publish the story. Is there no discretion, no moral filter that weighs the further harm a story will cause a minor child who has already been traumatized. That young man doesn’t need the Laguna community to know of his family dysfunction. Or, is the titillation of a sensational story too much to pass up.

Sam Hooper, Laguna Beach

Editor’s reply: The paper’s published policy is to omit the names of parents who are arrested for minor crimes so their children in local schools are shielded some from the effects of their parents’ actions. This was a felony, not a petty offense. Public disclosure of serious illegal behavior serves as a deterrent to some, a caution to others about whom to avoid, and perhaps in this instance provides a beacon of empathy for its victim.

 

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