Marcy Burstiner’s “Anger Your Readers” (“Media Maven,” Dec. 3) mentioned that the Facebook group description for “Say Goodbye to the Eye (Boycott Advertisers)” initially stated Kevin Hoover’s Arcata Eye should “have no right to exist” for being a community detriment. Those familiar with my activism know this isn’t consistent with my values. I advocate free speech — like this strategic expression of boycotting, however paradoxical sounding, for non-violent social change.
The Eye’s sensationalist coverage influences public opinion via negative portrayals of cannabis, which harms our image. Hoover’s warped negative exposure secures a national soapbox and book promotion, like A&E’s Pot City USA “documentary” demonstrated.
Prohibition’s environmental and human rights catastrophe dwarfs negative aspects of cannabis’ resurgence. I’m not greedy, I don’t grow, and I support local businesses. Morally, I’m compelled to fight an unjust legacy’s perpetuation. Demonizing sensationalism started this mess and can’t solve it. Arcata needs objective and diverse coverage reflective of community, not selective blind spots. Hoover refuses my challenge to debate this publicly.
This isn’t an attack on businesses. Advertisers should ask: Do they desire funding Hoover’s agenda? Would they exist without the Eye? What’s worse, lost business from advertising or a boycott?
Visit www.goodbye2theeye.ning.com to evaluate and discuss Hoover’s actions. Fliers and wallet-sized strategy guides are available online. Boycott supporters can stop some or all purchases at one or all of the Eye’s advertisers for their New Year’s resolution.
Jason Robo, Arcata