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The Importance of Op-Eds

The existence of an opinion column in any publication can seem antithetical to the role of journalism–to tell a story, to report news, to be thorough and above all, to be balanced and unbiased. Obviously, op-eds are not free of bias.

However, opinion-based journalism allows writers to cover topics in more depth, speaking partially from personal experience and free of the constraints imposed by a detached perspective. Op-eds allow writers and journalists to address the elephant in the room. Unlike the majority of blogs online, the goal is to publish informed opinions–not arbitrary ones.

The Point’s opinion page is fairly unique in that it allows for a greater diversity of voices to be expressed on the platform of a student publication. Students, alumni and faculty outside of the newspaper staff get the opportunity to address issues. In fact, of the 46 op-eds written for The Point over the past year, only 10 were penned by journalists. Additionally, nine of those 46 were submitted by PLNU professors or faculty.

The Point’s opinion page is also the section most open to experimentation. We’ve tackled issues unique to PLNU as well as those at the national and even international levels, and most recently utilized a pro vs. con format for some topics.

The newspaper staff would love to get your feedback on the opinion column in consideration of the school year and publications that loom ahead. Be sure to send kind words and/or scathing critiques to rzentler1337@pointloma.edu.

Riordan Zentler is a senior majoring in journalism at PLNU.

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Riordan Zentler

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