The Truth is Worth Fighting For


Shannon Taylor

MVP Regional Senior Investigative Reporter

In a time where people trust the media less and less, it has always been my priority to get all sides of a story and not just a press release, arrest report, or a board meeting's minutes. It's important to hear from those whose side is often overlooked--the accused and those in the community with concerns--a story is so much more than a press release or a police report.

Transparency from our local leaders--politicians, board members, attorneys, officers--should be a given, however that is not always the case, as we see time and time again.

You can't report on the truth or be accountable in journalism if you don't have the full story.

There are things that people in the community want answers to or a side of the story that was not detailed in the police report or maybe it's a board meeting where something was discussed prior to the meeting. These things are important to bring to light and it's not always easy to find the answers and expose the truth, but it will always be my number one priority to try my best to do so.

I am so thankful that since I took this position at Magic Valley Publishing, that it was apparent to me from the start that truth in investigative journalism was important to the publisher and editor I work for.

I have high morals when it comes to investigative journalism and overlooking a situation because of someone's position--whether that be one of authority, power, money or politics--was not something I was willing to compromise.

I can say that all of the community is important to me and sometimes that means that I may not be the most popular person when I walk into a room and that's okay. It's okay because the truth is not always popular or convenient. Those who choose to serve in public offices should have nothing to hide--and most don't.

Ruffling of feathers from time to time is not always a bad thing. A thorough reporter can't simply report what an elected official, or any source, says on an issue and move on. The whole story needs to be told.

I believe that the truth is worth telling, even fighting for, and I'll always be in search of truth and justice, because it's there, believe me.

Responsible journalism is getting all sides of a story and it's my belief that people should really consider what Investigative Journalism is and why it matters.

There are many, some in journalism even, who aren't interested in fleshing out the truth of an issue. They're more interested in what's convenient...they're like sheep and sheep just follow their leader, and some leaders keep politicians, those in power or with money in their back pocket.

I'll never be party to that kind of journalism.

Local investigative news is important because officials should be held to the same standards, laws, rules and regulations that everyone else is held to. That light of truth should shine, not just on the common people, but on everyone representing them. That's where I come in.

Our new publication, The Martin Post, couldn't have picked a better tagline, "where truth shines bright," because that is just what I have always given the community in my journalism and what I intend to keep doing with every single story I put out.