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Lariviere denies Commentator an interview

UO President Richard Lariviere’s assistant told me Friday that the president will not allow the Commentator to interview him.

“We didn’t think it was very presidential,” Lariviere’s executive assistant Staci Knabe said of the content in the most recent issue.

I had been trying to sit down with Lariviere for the interview issue we have coming out, which will contain transcripts of interviews with several notable figures in Eugene and the UO community. I talked to Knabe first on Wednesday, which was when Lariviere returned from watching the National Championship football game.

When I had asked on Wednesday to schedule an interview, I specifically promised that the interview would be taken seriously and that I am well-informed. Knabe said she had told Lariviere as much, but said, “We would have to be conscious of what was around it.”

“We looked at the last issue and there was not a lot of news in it,” she said, though she added that it was “probably entertaining.”

I can sympathize to an extent with Lariviere’s and Knabe’s nervousness about a publication that recently published an entire issue about the testicles of the UO’s highest-paid and highest-performing employee. I believe some of what I’ve written for the Commentator is incontrovertibly, rather than “probably,” entertaining, so I’m a little resentful of that.

But I’m not going to hold it against anyone. It’s not about me. It’s about the purpose for which journalism exists in the first place: Empowering the reader through knowledge to face the world around him or her, as well as holding up a mirror to his or her humanity.

Mark my words: I’ll interview this president for the Commentator before the year is over. For now, though, I’ve got a request in to interview Lariviere for the Voice, a publication with which he has already done a Q-and-A. I put that request in Friday afternoon. I will know where it stands by Wednesday.

  1. Ellie Macallan says:

    Lariviere is just jealous that he didn’t get a whole page dedicated to his balls.

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