Breitbart News has exclusively obtained an email sent by the President and Publisher of the Indianapolis Star. It invites “community leaders” to help plan and coordinate an aggressive, highly orchestrated campaign to “persuade” the Indiana state legislature to adopt sweeping special protections for Indiana’s gay, lesbian and transgender communities.
|Karen Ferguson Fuson,|
Publisher & President, Indy Star
The email, sent personally by Karen Ferguson Fuson, President and Publisher of the Star, was sent early this morning to an undisclosed list of business and media elites, together with gay rights activists. It pulls no punches in its scope or its goals. The email, in its unedited entirety reads as follows:
The IndyStar is preparing this fall to launch an ambitious and aggressive Editorial Board campaign designed to persuade the governor and state lawmakers to expand Indiana’s civil rights law to include protections for sexual orientation and gender identity.
We would like to privately brief you on our plans for the campaign, to explain ways in which you and your organization can partner with us, to answer your questions, and to hear your thoughts and possible concerns. Please join us for a meeting with community leaders on September 22, from 8:00 – 9:30 am at our offices, 130 S. Meridian St.
We believe that it is critical for all of us to work together to drive this important change and to further the recovery from damage done to our state by the RFRA controversy.Please join us as we prepare to continue this vital conversation about the future of Indiana. To RSVP, email [redacted].
Karen Ferguson Fuson,
Group President, Gannett Domestic Publishing,
In reporting on RFRA this Spring, the Star continuously repeated the "license to discriminate" line of the law's opponents on its news pages, spreading the misinformation that RFRA was about denying service to the LGBT community and not about protecting religious freedom. This was done despite a 22 year history of the national government and 30 states having RFRAs (by statute or judicial decision) in which RFRA had never once been used to overturn the application of an anti-discrimination law. Now that RFRA passed, the Star's agenda has turned to attacking supposed damage to the state by RFRA, repeated as fact in the newspaper's pages without a shred of evidence in support of the claim. In the email, Ferguson Fuson repeats claim as a rallying point to push for LGBT rights.President & Publisher, IndyStar
In the Society of Professional Journalists position paper on political involvement by journalists, the SPJ states that its members are to "remain free of associations that may compromise integrity or damage credibility." Ferguson Fuson shreds this ethical standard; her email not only suggests association to promote a political agenda, she expressly says she will help organize support for LGBT protections in the state's civil rights law and will use the resources of the newspaper to promote the group's agenda.
Ferguson Fuson shreds any semblance of journalistic ethics by expressly using her role as President and Publisher of the Indianapolis Star to organize and lend assistance to one side of a public policy issue that the Star regularly reports on. That she doesn't leave the issue on the State's editorial pages is evidenced by her newspaper's extremely biased reporting on the RFRA and LGBT issues. It is further evidenced by the Star's refusal to report critically on taxpayer subsidies for the Indiana Pacers. Ferguson Fuson divorced her husband and married Pacers Sports & Entertainment CEO Rick Fuson after relocating to Indianapolis.
Monica Boyer of Not on My Watch first brought the story to my attention. She offers these tips at the conclusion of her article.
Gary Welsh of Advance Indiana also has an excellent article on the subject.
- Immediately drop your subscription to the Indy Star. Without readers, they have no advertisers. The number to call is 317-444-4000. Tell them you’ve decided to find other sources of news and their service is no longer needed. Not another dime to the Indy Star.
- It’s time to cut off the funding. Send us a list of their advertisers. #cutoffthefunding It’s time to see who is paying for this kind of bullying.
- Call your lawmaker. Tell them to get tough skin and prepare to do the right thing when they head to Indianapolis. Tell you will stand by them in support if they stand up for Religious Freedom. Tell them you will pray, call, email and whatever it takes. Sexual Orientation/Gender Identity laws are DANGEROUS to Religious freedom. Several lawmakers have already said special rights for certain groups are more important than the First Amendment. It’s time to let them know we are watching.
- Become a Citizen Journalist. Make the Indy Star irrelevant by reporting the news yourself. It’s time to up our game and play offense instead of defense. Learn Social Media!!! If we got off the bench and into the game, they wouldn’t be able to bully our lawmakers like this. It’s easy, and it takes just minutes a day. It’s time to become citizen journalists and activate our social media skills. Email me if you are interested in setting up a class in your area.
- Pray for your Lawmaker. He/she will be going into a spiritual battle unlike many of them have seen. Call your prayer groups and churches and surround them with prayer. It is NOT easy standing in this cesspool of anger and manipulation. Pray for them.