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Statement on raid of Marion County Record

The Kansas Scholastic Press Association (KSPA) stands in solidarity with the Marion County Record while the newspaper’s staff and owners stand up to the recent brash overreaches by a local judge and law enforcement.

Journalists should be free to report the news. Seizing the technology used to publish a newspaper through a coordinated raid on the newspaper’s office clearly jeopardized that bedrock American freedom. 

The high school students in our Kansas journalism classrooms seem to know the law better than those who tried to silence the Marion County Record. Our students know the power of the First Amendment and its protections for journalists who are reporting the truth. They know that the government doesn’t have the power to barge into a newspaper office — especially when there is “insufficient evidence,” as the local prosecutor has said. 

As any good classroom civics lesson instructs, journalists play an essential role in holding government accountable as the fourth estate. And journalists at all levels must be able to operate independent of government censorship.

Student journalists in Kansas are protected from censorship coming from their school administration. In the same way that KSPA would condemn any restriction of those student rights, we condemn how local officials sought to silence Kansas journalists in Marion County.

We at KSPA stand with the staff and owners of the Marion County Record.

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