Friday, June 10, 2005

Schweitzer stands up for truth

First, let's get to the bottom of this convoluted story. Seems a philanthropic group, the Cox Foundation, refused to give a grant to the University of Montana School of Journalism. They sent the School a letter, which its Dean promptly released to the press. President Dennison of U-M chastised the Dean for releasing the document, and the Dean apologized. However, it turns out that President Dennison also inadvertently released the document to the press by mailing it to the Montana Governor's Office, which automatically resulted in the press getting a copy. What's more, the President's note to Governor Schweitzer was so cryptic that the Governor mistakenly thought Dennison was attacking him, rather than the Dean.

Anyway, the important bit is that Schweitzer came out strongly in support of the memo being released in the first place:

Schweitzer did criticize Dennison for rebuking Brown. The journalism dean did nothing wrong when he released the Cox letter to the media, the governor said.
The memo stated that the grant was denied because of stream-access issues in Southwestern Montana, where Cox President James Kennedy owns land. This corporate fat cat should have been outed for denying university funding because of his personal grievances with native Montanans. Schweitzer was right on to defend free speech and the honest airing of grievances, instead of advocating silence.


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