The Student News Site of Sacramento City College

The Express

The Student News Site of Sacramento City College

The Express

The Student News Site of Sacramento City College

The Express

Photo credit: Nick Shockey / nshockey.express@gmail.com
A letter from the editor
February 6, 2024

Editors Note | I’ll drink to this

Nicole Cardoza | Editor In Chief
[email protected]

Did you know that there is a Journalism Association of Community Colleges?

Don’t feel bad, neither did I until I joined The Express.

JACC hosts annual conferences where they hand out awards and hold workshops for student journalists. These conferences are an opportunity for students to be recognized and honored for their work, and for students to learn from media professionals.

I was recently asked to attend one of these conferences along with other student editors and instructors from City College. But before we could participate in the conference we had to sign a “behavior contract.”
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Some of you may remember this type of document from such adolescent activities as high school sporting competitions, junior high field trips and summer camps. Basically the language is all the same, “I will not blankety blankety, while I am here at blah, blah…”

I was appropriately pissed when I saw that in order to attend this weekend conference, held here in Sacramento, I would have to sign a contract stating that I would not drink alcohol.

Let me be clear here: I am not much of a drinker. I haven’t been drunk in 13 years and I don’t really plan on ever being drunk again. However, being 29 years old I am legally allowed to drink and the United States of America has decided that I’m responsible enough to decide when, where and how much. Another thing I did not learn until I began studying journalism was how much journalists know about First Amendment rights. By that I mean they get all starry-eyed talking about it and would probably make love to the words “freedom of the press,” if that were possible.

There is great irony in this situation – an organization that was formed to support and educate journalists, which includes upholding the rights of student journalists, has decided it is OK to restrict those rights when it serves its purpose.

Actually, they are just asking us to forfeit our rights by signing a stupid piece of paper, and they probably just hoped that we hadn’t been educated enough to realize how ridiculous and insulting the whole thing was.

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