Suburban newspaper’s motto is at once perfect and horrifying

In an era of change, the independent and locally owned newspaper is becoming increasingly rare. Paddock Publications, Inc., an independent publishing company, is an exception and proud of its history.

Hosea C. Paddock started the company more than 120 years ago with the motto, “To fear God, tell the truth and make money.” Four generations of Paddocks built a chain of weekly newspapers into the Daily Herald, the third largest newspaper in Illinois.

The Paddocks have no plans to give up the reins. Their strategic plans include continued expansion in the growing suburban Chicago market and a strong commitment to the communities currently served.

The Paddocks see their publishing powerhouse growing well into the next century.

The above is from the About Us page on DailyHerald.com

I am told that this motto still appears on every print edition. I thought it was a mistake when I first saw it here: http://twitter.com/dh_opinion but was quickly informed by Katie Foutz (http://twitter.com/kfoutz) that it is not.

If you think about it, it’s actually fairly comical. What are people in the suburbs known for? I’d say that a few things are definitely their adherence to some sort of religion and their ability (or at least desire) to make money. As far as telling the truth, I’m not sure about that one. They can’t possibly be any worse than, say, Chicago alderman so let’s give them a pass on that one.

I wonder if any potential readers could be put off by this though. Are there no atheists among the Herald’s readership? Agnostics? Wiccans? What about poor people and liars?

As far as the motto representing the views of a publisher though, I can only admire the “make money” credo. That should indeed be every publisher’s goal.

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