To the editors:
Although the socio-economic climate which served as catalyst, incubator, and motivator for alternative newspapers similar to the Reader has changed, never-the-less, the essential need for moral integrity should definitely be maintained, both in practice and in principle.
Unfortunately, the inspired principals who first founded the Reader have lost the vision and consequently have been seduced by a very different kind of underground. The Reader has grown; more staff and more operating expenses so you have your basic budgetary priority condition dictating more advertising revenue. The level of advertising is particularly distressing & alarming because of the Reader's gradual conversion to mainstream crass whoreish commercialism. Full page cigarette ads can be "rationalized." But your role of promoter/advocator of promiscuous sexual behavior, especially homosexuality, is absolutely shameful. Sleazy, immoral advertising is a festering cancer eroding the integrity and the positive potentiality of a "could-be" honest newspaper.
It's ironic that some of your COMMERCIAL ACCOUNTS are actively making contributions to medical research organizations who are relentlessly waging a war against sexually transmitted diseases; diseases which are perversely and ignorantly encouraged by a total lack of concern by Reader editors and board of directors.
With homage to the true meaning of Christmas, we strongly admonish the editors to PLEASE stop printing immoral ads; at least during the month of December. Please respond to a higher calling. Donate three pages for pictures of missing children, pictures of homeless men and women who are seeking employment, pictures of children who are waiting for adoption, public service ads for Public Safety Education, Chimera Educational Foundation, Shriners Hospital free medical advice (1-800), United Way and other organizations offering volunteer opportunities, the Ad Council campaigns, Literacy Coalition. There is a whole world of worthwhile causes and it don't take a lot of deep research to find them.
Be a channel for POSITIVE CHANGE. Incidentally, there is already a paper in Chicago serving the needs of gay protagonists.
Citizens for Responsible Media