New semester translates to fresh start for Baylor Lariat

I gave up on New Year’s resolutions a long time ago. Now I sit on the couch eating fried food and chuckling at all the Facebook statuses and Instagram pictures involving clean eating and going to the gym. By February, the McLane Student Life Center will go back to its usual crowd and the produce section in HEB will look like a morgue compared to the ice cream aisle.

I shouldn’t judge. Those people put in good work while I sat around. At least they had ambition, even if it died out. Those who made resolutions were at least brave enough to try. Meanwhile, my fear of failure and lack of faith in my own resolve keep me on the couch.

It is my personal belief that people quit on resolutions because they set up unrealistic expectations, want results sooner or fail to give themselves grace to mess up every once in a while.

With that in mind, I decide to make some resolutions for the Lariat and myself as newly-appointed editor-in-chief. I endeavored to keep my expectations realistic, be patient and give grace where it is due. I hope that you as readers will do the same for us as we transition into a new semester.

A commitment to consideration:

Now more than ever, it is impossible to make everyone happy. Pleasing people has never been the Lariat’s main initiative. However, intentionally hurting people is never the Lariat’s goal. We are not people pleasers, but we are also not people bashers. With that in mind, I will endeavor to use the utmost discernment and empathy before anything is placed on the opinion page. I aim to use my best judgement and forethought and will not publish anything that is more hurtful than productive. Everyone is entitled to their opinion, but not everyone is entitled to having that opinion published.

An aim for inclusion:

This goes out to the “little guys” on campus. All of the clubs, organizations, people groups and minorities that feel over looked and under covered. It is my hope that the Lariat will be a paper that you feel is applicable to you. No matter how others may attempt to define your significance or place at Baylor, you make up our audience. As such, our responsibility to serve you by providing relevant content. If you feel that we are not succeeding in this, please let us know. Help us help you.

A resolve to fulfill our motto:

“We’re there when you can’t be.” The phrase was initially inspiring to me when I started reporting for the Lariat. When I moved to an editing position, however, my motto turned into “You’re there, but I don’t have time to be.” It is my personal ambition as well as my hope for Lariat reporters and staff writers to really be “there” this semester. It should never a journalist’s goal to log the most hours in the newsroom. Reporters need to be out in the field, finding out what matters to you, our audience. If we neglect our audience’s desires, we are producing a self-serving paper. You don’t want to read that. Neither do I.

As we, the Lariat staff, transition into this new semester, it is my hope that you give us grace. That is not my way of hinting at an impending failure. Rather, it is a reminder that we, like you, are still learning. Growing pains are real, especially in the newsroom.

Maleesa Johnson is a senior journalism major from Round Rock. She is editor-in-chief of the Lariat.