Blown out of proportion

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Malibu Stage Co. demands that your paper retract the statement that you made in your front-page article about our small claims suit brought by the Flaxes. Apparently, this minor action was brought to your attention by an e-mail from the plaintiffs, Peter and Jacalynne Flax.

You state in your article that Charles Marowitz has sued Malibu Stage Co. Marowitz threatened to sue us but was advised by his lawyer that he had no case and the matter was dropped.

Malibu Stage Co. is a non-profit company. We are an all volunteer, community backed organization. No one receives a salary. We rely on the good opinion of Malibu. Your paper has taken a small issue and blown it up as if we were a big organization taking unfair advantage of an innocent little production company.

I believe that you have caused us real harm by embellishing and distorting this frivolous item. As it is, we count on your paper to help us in our struggle to bring professional theater to the community – an important feature of any city and universally embraced as such. Without your support, our task becomes almost insurmountable. The greater part of our production costs are in advertising. We rely on your paper to carry our press releases promoting our coming shows.

We expect fair and balanced reporting from our community newspapers. It would be shameful if our local papers degenerated into smirking tabloids. Surely the citizens of Malibu deserve better. I was told in your defense of the story that it was “news.” How does a small claims suit over $2,000 become “news?”

Jacqueline Bridgeman

President, Malibu Stage Co.