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Attempted suicide story should not have been printed

As a Duke alum and former Chronicle editor-in-chief, I read with some dismay the Oct. 10 story about the student who attempted suicide in Aycock, "Student attempts suicide." What, exactly, was the point of running that story? The student was apparently not charged with a crime, nor does the attempt appear to have had newsworthy ripple effects beyond the predictable gossiping about it. Lest you think that suicide attempts are inherently newsworthy, please ask yourself when you last saw a major newspaper run an article about the suicide attempt of a non-public figure. And to the extent that you ran the story because you wanted to make a larger point about Duke's mental health support network, the story contained absolutely nothing to that effect. It was, instead, simply prurient, and an unnecessary invasion of the student's privacy. I hope that in the future, you will exercise more discretion.

Justin Dillon

Trinity '96


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