Let's Talk

Dear Steady Community, 

I would like to take a moment to personally and directly thank all of you. This may be repetitive after our previous letter, but it is a thought that bears repeating: Steady would not be what it is today if not for your encouragement, involvement, and participation. 

When we started on this journey six months ago, we hoped to create a forum where readers felt free and safe to share their own thoughts and communicate with others; and we hoped your feedback would help guide our efforts. Because of you, I feel that this is not only a success but truly, a blossoming community — one that I would like to highlight.

Now I know that it is virtually unheard of for current or former news anchors to share the spotlight, but your contributions are simply too good to go unrecognized. I know many of you also enjoy reading the comments section, and I encourage you to respond to each other. But in response to our previous note, we got an idea from one of our readers that got us thinking. Jerry, thanks for your inspiration. Take it away…

Jerry A:

Dan, as always enjoy your column. Was thinking that like your tweets on Friday, you might consider having a day every couple of weeks where you share some of the more interesting responses to your articles specifically from Steady readers.

Jerry, you hit the tack on the sweet spot. A (metaphorical) extra ration of rum for you, my friend. 

So here we go. Below are some of the comments and some of my thoughts. Now I know a lot of you had some really nice things to say about Steady. They are greatly appreciated but we promise to not let it go to our heads. We aim to constantly refine and improve our offerings.

Barb:

I appreciate your reporting on matters that should be a concern to all people. Steady has a way of pulling you into the issues and leaves you with a longing to be a part of the solution. It has a way of opening our eyes and ears so that we might move forward with renewed vigor and hope for our country. Thank you for your thoughts and words of insight that we sometimes do not recognize on our own. I love the at home feel that Steady offers. There are times I feel more connected to people I've never met, people who are thousands of miles away because of the discussion that Steady generates. I come from a very long line of Republicans but I have chosen to believe in the Democratic way of looking at things. There are times I have been made to feel like a sinner, or the sheep that strayed. It is wonderful to hear from others who feel much the way I do Steady helps to keep me straight and feeling redeemed again. Thank you for all of your efforts.

Barb, thank you for the kind words. This is exactly the feeling we hoped to inspire with Steady — that anyone, no matter your race, creed, religion, orientation, political party —no matter who you are, you can come here to discuss important issues of the day and have your voice heard, challenged when warranted, but always respected. In order to move forward as a country and a global community, we have to do so together. As for feeling like a sinner or a straying sheep, I urge you to, well, stay steady. I know many others out there feel the same way. I hear from many of them. There’s an old saying I like to quote about politics — I’m not left wing, right wing, or chicken wing. The truth is, we are defined by the actions we take to help others and give to our community more than political labels.

Diane Lewis Torre:

I don’t always read steady when it first arrives in my inbox. Sometimes I save them up so I can read them when I have the time. I am always inspired by your words, Dan. You continue to be the best journalist around. You make me laugh too! I have to say that I get a little tired of people on here saying that you’re the only true journalist around. There are lots of great journalists still working their tails off to bring fair, balanced, insightful reports. Many of them are your local journalists working hard in your own city. I have been a photojournalist for 35 years and I work with some amazing reporters who dig for the truth and bring it to viewers every day. Keep the faith, people. There IS good journalism and great storytelling out there. You just have to know where to find it. Perhaps you’ll find it smack-dab in the middle of your own hometown.

Diane, again thanks for the kind words and also for the important perspective. I am just one journalist, a reporter who got very lucky. And I would be the first to agree with you. There are many great journalists working hard under difficult circumstances to bear witness to injustice and inform their fellow citizens. You’re also absolutely right about the wealth of talent in local journalism but sadly it is under assault as local papers in particular face headwinds from evaporating business models. They need all of our support. Local reporters are the ones striving to cover the issues that, literally and figuratively, hit close to home. So I’ll offer our digital community here a suggestion: please try to support local journalism wherever possible —with your readership, monetary support, or good old word-of-mouth. (You can even tell them that Dan sent you.) If you’ve already done so, give your favorite publication, reporter, or article, a shout-out in the comments section. Let’s spread the word about these vital members of our communities.

Lee:

I appreciate Steady so much - even the name! I love being. surprised by your nature video posts . And this is a summer when if we haven’t before now - we should be thinking about our natural world and how we can go forward and respect it and protect it and honor it . Your elder statesman status also is much appreciated - as you have a historical perspective and that of someone who has loved through changing times. Even when you are shedding. light n the challenges we face you help me feel just a little more hopeful.

Lee, thank you and I am glad you like our posts on nature. You raise an important point. The ongoing climate crisis in particular and the damage to our natural world more broadly are topics that always deserve far more attention. We on making content on our planet and the crises it faces a big part of our coverage on Steady. I am also glad that you find our posts a source of some hope. And it seems others do as well. We can never minimize the challenges we face, but we also must remember that our predecessors had to face down their own challenges. And that over the course of human history we have seen so much progress on so many fronts. Yes, there is a lot of work left to be done to make our planet more sustainable and our societies more equitable and just. But we also can’t minimize the potential for all of us to do good, and to help heal what has been broken. And as you said at the top, nature is a wonderful inspiration for the stakes of what we need to protect. So I leave you all today with some pictures of our planet in its glory.

As always, I look forward to hearing your thoughts in the comments section and will be looking for ones to share in the future. Please also respond to each other, with respect and thoughtfulness. Thanks for adding your voice and being part of the Steady community.

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