Thank you, LNP | LancasterOnline, for the work you did in exposing the individual behind The Lancaster Patriot (“Alt-right voice sets up shop,” Sept. 27). Although it disturbs me that such a person set up shop in Lancaster County, I am encouraged by your work in identifying him and making clear that such beliefs are not welcome here. I’m also heartened to see prominent county Republicans distance themselves from him, thanks to LNP | LancasterOnline’s reporting.
This episode showcases the role local journalism can play in maintaining a safe community. Many county residents — including those who had associated with this person — were unaware of his hateful ideology before LNP | LancasterOnline’s article. Sadly, this reality also shows how insidious hate can be. By advertising The Lancaster Patriot as a source of conservative Christian journalism, this individual was able to convince an unknown number of Lancaster countians to sign up for his far-right propaganda.
However, it's disturbing that the backers of The Lancaster Patriot remain anonymous. LNP | LancasterOnline was able to reveal the advertisers, but the anonymity of major sponsors makes one wonder what they have to hide. How much did they know about this individual before agreeing to sponsor the project?
I hope that LNP | LancasterOnline never has to investigate something like this again. But if you do, perhaps you should put a content warning on the articles in which you reprint hateful quotes. These things deserve to be exposed, but they could be harsh to people who experience racism or anti-Semitism on a daily basis.
Thanks again for your work in this case.