When I arrived, Micah introduced himself, without anybody asking him to, and welcomed me to Mrs. Wells' fourth-grade class at Sandburg Elementary. The kids have been reading Illinois Times as a class project, and so were well-prepared with questions, and with answers to mine. "How can a newspaper make money if it's free?" "Advertisements," several said. One asked, "How much does an ad cost?" I explained that big ads cost more than small ones, and if someone advertises every week they get a discount. (I didn't tell them that, as editor, I don't know much about the ad side of the business.) There was a lot of nuts-and-bolts discussion, then we talked about freedom of the press and the First Amendment. What does freedom mean? "You can do what you want," one said. And the press has extra freedom, because it's protected by the Bill of Rights, I said. One girl, by her eye contact, seemed especially interested. "And extra freedom means extra responsibility," I explained, and she nodded to let me know she gets it. As the children were leaving class, a boy brought me a note in fourth-grade handwriting: "Can you write about us please?" – Fletcher Farrar, editor

About The Author

Fletcher Farrar

Fletcher Farrar is president of Illinois Times .

Illinois Times has provided readers with independent journalism for more than 40 years, from news and politics to arts and culture.

Now more than ever, we’re asking for your support to continue providing our community with real news that everyone can access, free of charge.

We’re also offering a home delivery option as an added convenience for friends of the paper.

Click here to subscribe, or simply show your support for Illinois Times.

Got something to say?
Send a letter to the editor and we'll publish your feedback in print!

Comments (0)

Add a comment

Add a Comment