Community news is a shared responsibility
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Annual appealPlease support the Pittsburgh Jewish Chronicle

Community news is a shared responsibility

"If you have the ability to give any gift, it will be appreciated and will be used to continue to tell our community’s stories and to fulfill our responsibility to you."

David Rullo

If you’re reading this appeal, you already know the value of the Pittsburgh Jewish Chronicle. You, my friend, are a regular reader. Why else would you be reading this column that has the word “Appeal” above it?

As a regular reader, you’ve seen my byline. I know you have because you’ve told me. You’ve approached me at the JCC and at the grocery store. You’ve let me know what stories you’ve liked and those you think should have been written differently while I’ve been at temple or at the mall. In doing so, you’ve made it clear that I have a responsibility to get the story right.
That responsibility, though, goes both ways.

While reading this newspaper you may have noticed that there are no full-page ads for department stores or car dealerships. There aren’t splashy full-color layouts featuring UPMC or Allegheny General Hospital, and no advertorials hawking Chanukah gift suggestions by advertisers.

Instead, you have a community newspaper filled with news you can use.

I’ve written about the Pittsburgh synagogue shooter trial, antisemitism on college campuses, the kosher food policy at Weinberg Terrace and local security concerns. I’ve also highlighted the important work being done by members of our community and documented when we’ve celebrated holidays and important anniversaries.

Each week we also highlight the lifecycle events that matter to you: b’nai mitzvot, births, weddings and obituaries. We include photos and calendar listings and community events.

Whether you get your news from our printed paper, our emailed newsletter or social media posts, you know the Pittsburgh Jewish Chronicle endeavors to tell the stories of this community and to get the stories right. We are your best source for news about your local Jewish community.

We hope to continue our work for generations, but we need you to recognize the shared responsibility I mentioned a few paragraphs ago.

Reporting the news is expensive. It’s a manual process that requires real people to do the work. Each of us has families and need to be paid for our work. The Pittsburgh Jewish Chronicle is still printed each week with ink on paper. It’s mailed to you or delivered to various locations by real people. None of these things can be automated. And, to top it off, knowing the importance of the stories we tell, we give free subscriptions to every Jewish household in the Pittsburgh area. At a time when other newspapers are cutting back on printed editions, we’re still bringing you a physical newspaper each week.

If you value the paper so much that you’re reading this appeal, if you understand the importance of the news we deliver, if you desire a physical, printed paper that tells the stories of our community, then we need your help.

No doubt about it, times are hard. We’d love for you to donate to our annual appeal and join the Publisher’s Circle with a $3,600 gift, but that might not be right for you and your family. If you have the ability to give any gift, it will be appreciated and will be used to continue to tell our community’s stories and to fulfill our responsibility to you.

If I haven’t convinced you, maybe the Jewish sage Hillel will. I’m not sure if this is true or not, but I’ve heard that when he committed his famous adage to history — “If I am not for myself, who will be for me? If I am only for myself, what am I? And if not now, when” — he was actually referring to community journalism and its regular readers. PJC

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