In response to Peter Childers' note that disputed my charge that the Independent purposely excludes information that does not favor death row inmates ("Aggravating letter," Back Talk, May 17), I respectfully disagree with him if he thinks persons who advocate for capital punishment confuse higher body counts with success. The unwritten media policy of ignoring prison behaviors and many facts of each case or the preferential coverage of those that oppose execution continues for many reasons (including ones I referenced).
Childers made a good point about prevention being a good investment in public safety. However, the notion that an occasional and deserved execution does protect North Carolinians (including prison staff and other offenders) hasn't "struck" him yet. Many facts about Willie Brown's case or criminal history still haven't been published so that Indy readers might judge for themselves if he deserved execution, or that no social program could have saved him. If the Indy and other media didn't withhold information about Brown's escalating and violent behaviors, Childers' arguments for prevention might have be made even stronger.
The Indy staff isn't reporting. They are publishing columns in disguise, their views or "social scenery," what they think their audience wants to read or hear. Truths are what they are, and sometimes they are "aggravating."