Skip to main content

Odds and ends, and a thank-you note

The Highland County Press - Staff Photo - Create Article
Rory Ryan

By Rory Ryan
The Highland County Press

Today's Word of the Day is allyship. A word I was happily ignorant of until a recent county commissioners' meeting. 

I typically work on three or four different MacBook computers, either at The HCP or my home office (which is also the kitchen table). Not one of these computers – all fairly new models purchased from 2015-22 – recognizes "allyship" as a word. In fact, each time I type "allyship," the computer auto corrects it to ally ship, which makes me think of a navy support vessel. 

Allyship, as I recently learned, "refers to the actions, behaviors and practices that leaders take to support, amplify and advocate with others, especially with individuals who don't belong to the same social identity groups as themselves."

Whoever came up with "allyship" must be totally ignorant of the Golden Rule: "Do unto others as you would have them do unto you,” (Matthew 7:12). Enough said.

Allyship, my arse. Let's stop inventing words to further any agendas. On second thought, maybe a community or two might want to pursue an allyship form of government. Hmm.

* * *

Speaking truth to power

Following a one-week suspension, NPR senior business editor Uri Berliner has resigned from the network over the organization’s rebuke of his complaints of its culture and its CEO's past criticisms of former President Donald Trump, according to reports.

“I respect the integrity of my colleagues and wish for NPR to thrive and do important journalism,” Berliner wrote in his resignation letter to CEO Katherine Maher, which he shared on X. “But I cannot work in a newsroom where I am disparaged by a new CEO whose divisive views confirm the very problems at NPR I cite in my Free Press essay.”

That Free Press essay is very good reading at:

Berliner begins his Free Press essay by writing: "You know the stereotype of the NPR listener – an EV-driving, Wordle-playing, tote bag-carrying coastal elite. It doesn’t precisely describe me, but it’s not far off. I’m Sarah Lawrence-educated, was raised by a lesbian peace activist mother, I drive a Subaru, and Spotify says my listening habits are most similar to people in Berkeley. I fit the NPR mold. I’ll cop to that."

Berliner continues: "Back in 2011, although NPR’s audience tilted a bit to the left, it still bore a resemblance to America at large. Twenty-six percent of listeners described themselves as conservative, 23 percent as middle of the road, and 37 percent as liberal. By 2023, the picture was completely different: only 11 percent described themselves as very or somewhat conservative, 21 percent as middle of the road, and 67 percent of listeners said they were very or somewhat liberal. We weren’t just losing conservatives; we were also losing moderates and traditional liberals. An open-minded spirit no longer exists within NPR, and now, predictably, we don’t have an audience that reflects America. 

"Like many unfortunate things, the rise of advocacy took off with Donald Trump. As in many newsrooms, his election in 2016 was greeted at NPR with a mixture of disbelief, anger and despair. (Just to note, I eagerly voted against Trump twice, but felt we were obliged to cover him fairly.) Persistent rumors that the Trump campaign colluded with Russia over the election became the catnip that drove reporting. At NPR, we hitched our wagon to Trump’s most visible antagonist, Rep. Adam Schiff. 

"Schiff, who was the top Democrat on the House Intelligence Committee, became NPR’s guiding hand, its ever-present muse. By my count, NPR hosts interviewed Schiff 25 times about Trump and Russia. During many of those conversations, Schiff alluded to purported evidence of collusion. The Schiff talking points became the drumbeat of NPR news reports. But when the Mueller report found no credible evidence of collusion, NPR’s coverage was notably sparse. Russiagate quietly faded from our programming. 

"In D.C., where NPR is headquartered and many of us live, I found 87 registered Democrats working in editorial positions and zero Republicans. None. On May 3, 2021, I presented the findings at an all-hands editorial staff meeting. When I suggested we had a diversity problem with a score of 87 Democrats and zero Republicans, the response wasn’t hostile. It was worse. It was met with profound indifference."

Again, Berliner's piece is worth reading at

And, yes, your tax dollars are at woke (sic) at NPR.

* * *

Community college quandary

As the Ohio Auditor's Office reported this week, Lakeland Community College in northeast Ohio is overstaffed and burdened with debt related to facilities that are significantly underused because of continued declines in student enrollment over the past decade.

"Lakeland now stands at the precipice of fiscal watch (, and administrators will have to make difficult decisions related to work force, class and program offerings, and facilities to remain in operation. We have serious concerns about the college’s ability to continue to serve the residents of Lake County,” Auditor of State Keith Faber said. “LKCC’s trajectory is unsustainable.

"At its peak in 2012, enrollment at LKCC topped 9,400 students. Enrollment has declined steadily since then and totaled about 5,000 students as of the fall semester of 2022. However, college administration historically has not made decisions to reflect the changes in operations. Staffing has not been significantly reduced." 

This is unfortunate news, and other community colleges across Ohio are no doubt taking note.

* * *

Bill Barr takes a stand

Former Attorney General William Barr said this week that he believes the New York trial involving former President Donald Trump is an “abomination” and politicized.

Trump faces more than 30 counts of falsifying business records for alleged hush-money payments that were made to bury stories during the 2016 election through his former lawyer, Michael Cohen. Trump has pleaded not guilty.

“It’s obviously political, seven years after he pays hush money to try and come up with this case,” Barr said to Fox News this week.

Barr said that he would vote for Trump, despite his prior criticism against the former commander-in-chief and Barr's former boss.

“The real threat to liberty, the real threat to our system, are the excesses of the progressive left. They are perverting the system of justice, and that’s where the danger lies. The corruption and subversion of our institutions by the left,” he told Fox News.

* * *

Thank you

As I recently pointed out, several readers have noticed the publisher's note that follows many of our online articles, with exceptions for obituaries and certain other stories. The note can be read at the end of this column.

Suffice it to say, we greatly appreciate everyone who has responded. Your contributions mean a lot to us. We live in an era in which fewer and fewer people seem to value news – accurately and fairly presented. Social media, no doubt, has a lot to do with it. 

With your continued support, we will continue to do our best to earn it. This is The Highland County Press' 25th consecutive year in Highland County, and its 15th year under our local ownership.

My staff and I thank you.

Rory Ryan is publisher and owner of The Highland County Press, Highland County's only locally owned and operated newspaper.

* * *

Publisher's note: A free press is critical to having well-informed voters and citizens. While some news organizations opt for paid websites or costly paywalls, The Highland County Press has maintained a free newspaper and website for the last 25 years for our community. If you would like to contribute to this service, it would be greatly appreciated. Donations may be made to: The Highland County Press, P.O. Box 849, Hillsboro, Ohio 45133. Please include "for website" on the memo line.

Add new comment

This is not for publication.
This is not for publication.

Plain text

  • No HTML tags allowed.
  • Lines and paragraphs break automatically.
  • Web page addresses and email addresses turn into links automatically.
Article comments are not posted immediately to the Web site. Each submission must be approved by the Web site editor, who may edit content for appropriateness. There may be a delay of 24-48 hours for any submission while the web site editor reviews and approves it. Note: All information on this form is required. Your telephone number and email address is for our use only, and will not be attached to your comment.