Editor in chief must be
The debate over who will be chosen as the
next editor in chief of The Daily Cougar has revolved around many issues
that seem to be skirting
one significant observation:
Racism, perceived racism, administrative
protocol and ideology seem to be the driving forces in this battle for
The Cougar's top spot.
What about qualifications?
The editor in chief of Houston's second
largest daily paper has to be a competent journalist.
Regardless of how long either candidate
has worked for a newspaper or how fantastic a wordsmith either student
is, one fact is getting lost in
One candidate figured out how to apply
and what it took to apply and did the necessary leg work to submit a qualified
Any other would-be candidates weren't sure
about the rules, didn't know all the facts and regulations and missed the
All other things being equal, the debate
should end there.
Knowing the facts, learning the rules and
making deadlines are elementary to being a journalist.
If a potential candidate wasn't sure about
the rules, he or she should have asked. That's what journalists do — ask
The first thing a reporter is taught is
to be accurate, inquisitive and thorough.
It is ludicrous that consideration is being
given to any candidates who lack the fundamental skills necessary to be
an effective journalist.
The editor in chief position is essentially
the highest-ranking journalist at a newspaper. If that person is not competent
enough to dig up the
ground rules for applying for the position,
why would anyone expect them to be competent enough to run the entire paper?
Although I am a writer for The Daily Cougar,
I have no motive to speak out for one candidate or the other. I don't really
know any of them. It's just
abundantly clear that one of the candidates
is qualified while any others who applied after the original deadline are