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Byron Shire
May 9, 2021

Inconvenient truth

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Emily Joy – Shearwater Steiner School, Mullumbimby

The caption (It’s time to address the climate crisis, stop excessive clearing in Indonesia and save the orangutan) above the front page photograph in The Echo [August 14] unfortunately was a cheap political shot and a deplorable misrepresentation of the good will created during the shared celebration of Indonesian culture.

Your newspaper effectively destroyed the accord that was created on the day and misused the invitation made by the organisers.

For Primary school students who are up and coming readers of their local paper, I fail to understand why the newspaper wanted to demolish hope and optimism of the school and local community who contributed their small part in positivity in the current world climate?

As the coordinator of a two-day Indonesian event that focused on Indonesian Independence Day and World Orangutan Day, I felt fortunate to offer cultural workshops and activities to the students in cooking, weaving and dance. The Consul General presented musical instruments to the school and the Sumatran Orangutan Information Centre representatives spoke on the incredible importance of the Leuser Region, also known as one of the key lung regions in the world.

Throughout the day, the overall sentiments of the participants and presenters were of appreciation, growing trust, and enthusiasm, but your spin on the day put any future visits in jeopardy and damaged the true spirit of the cooperation that was evident. 

Hopefully there are many students at the school optimistic that the free press will still tell any ‘inconvenient truths’.

– Ed

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