Petition to reinstate Cleveland Plain Dealer critic
The controversy over the shabby treatment of Cleveland Plain Dealer music critic Don Rosenberg -- barred by the paper's editor from covering the Cleveland Orchestra -- continues to reverberate. A "Free Press Cleveland" movement has emerged, organized by concerned Clevelanders, to gather signatures online for a letter of protest to that editor, Susan Goldberg, and the paper's president/CEO (and Cleveland Orchestra board member) Terrance Egger.
It's a hard-hitting letter that that describes the situation as "an act of censorship and an embarrassment to the city." The final plea: "Restore Donald Rosenberg to his post as Music Critic, with no restrictions. Restore our faith in the Plain Dealer." I couldn't agree more.
The full text of the letter and instructions on how to ...
add your name are given below. Obviously, you don't have to be from Cleveland to be interested in this issue, which affects anyone who cares about the art of music and the role of music criticism in the service of that art.
FROM FREE PRESS CELEVLAND:
Let's not tolerate censorship! The many comments posted on Tim Smith's blogs and other blogs reveal widespread outrage against the Plain Dealer. It's now time for us to write to the PD. There have been examples in other cities where a newspaper has fired a critic, then reversed the decision after being swamped with letters. If enough of us write and demand Rosenberg's reinstatement as Music Critic, the PD may back down.
If you prefer safety in numbers, (especially if you are a musician in Cleveland, fearing reprisal) you can join us in signing this petition (see below). Please email me at FreePressCleveland@live.com, to indicate that you want to be listed as a signator on the letter. If you are willing to have your title or affiliation also listed, please indicate that. When we have collected a healthy number of signators, we'll send the letter to the PD.
If you prefer to write your own letter, go to www.cleveland.com/plaindealer/lettertoeditor.ssf and send 200 words or less.
LETTER TO THE PLAIN DEALER
To: Terrance Egger, President & C.E.O. Susan Goldberg, Editor
We, the undersigned, protest the Plain Dealer's treatment of nationally respected Music Critic Donald Rosenberg. Your decision to ban him from reviewing the Cleveland Orchestra is an act of censorship and an embarrassment to the city. Since you failed to clearly report the action to your readers, we had to find out the truth from the New York Times, the Baltimore Sun, the Boston Globe.com, etc.
Rosenberg did not resign, as the Plain Dealer seemed to imply. He was demoted, for having respectfully and intelligently criticized a conductor who has met with mixed reviews around the world. As stated by Musical America.com, Rosenberg is "among the most respected music critics in the business." His reviews were not biased; he reported what he heard, and fostered healthy and intelligent debate. That is a critic's job. The integrity of the Plain Dealer is in question. Your action has sullied the reputations of both the PD and the Orchestra. Since Plain Dealer C.E.O. Terrance Egger is a trustee of the Orchestra, the politics behind the decision are obvious.
Restore Donald Rosenberg to his post as Music Critic, with no restrictions. Restore our faith in the Plain Dealer.
IF YOU WANT TO ADD YOUR NAME TO THE LETTER THAT WILL BE DELIVERED, SEND AN EMAIL TO: FreePressCleveland@live.com,