Based in Vancouver, Canada, The New Agora is an independent newspaper bringing a fresh and alternative perspective to issues that are often ignored by the mainstream media. Dan Merchant the The New Agora answered these five questions for Ban T-shirts.
Question 1. The New Agora is a printed and online monthly newspaper - who produces it and what is the aim of the publication?
The New Agora is published by a group of freedom loving people, trying to empower others to look deeper and search for the truth. Dan Merchant started The Agora paper back in 2009. In 2011, Lorenzo and Fredalupe joined him and together they publish the aptly named: New Agora. We strive to bring people news and views that are underrepresented in the mainstream papers, with a focus on health, conscious living, and freedom! Our motto is "Elect to Govern Yourself."
Question 2. Is there a political ideology behind The New Agora, or is it purely about trying to get to the truth?
We aren't tied to a political ideology, none of us belong to a political party or any organization. We believe that people should be free to choose for themselves as long as they do no harm, and we live it. We don't purport to print only the truth, as truth is subjective and based on having all the facts, which is near impossible in this age of information/disinformation overload. We try to show the sides of an issue that don't get as much press attention, to help people arrive at a more informed truth...a truer truth!
Question 3. People generally tend to believe what they see and read in the mainstream media. Do you find that people are somewhat suspicious when presented with a publication which may challenge much of what they hold to be true?
The New Agora makes people suspicious of the mainstream media! We show them side to events or issues that they may never have seen or contemplated; when they further look into those points we raise and see some truth to them, they question why the mainstream doesn't talk about it. They begin to wonder what else they're missing and hopefully we are able to show them a new realm of information and open them up to higher level of consciousness.
Question 4. Do you think people are becoming more or less conscious of the true nature of governments and corporate power?
People are becoming more conscious of the destructive nature of our system by the day. As the global economy continues to get worse people are asking why, who, how, and what can be done to make positive changes. We want to highlight the corporate and government corruption and misdeeds, and show people ways they can stay healthy, work towards freeing themselves, and connect with others to create something better.
Question 5. Finally, with many printed newspapers gettng less circulation because of the abundancy of news available on the internet, how valid is it to continue with printed publications, particularly considering the environmental implications?
The reason print media is dying is because of the material it prints. People are going to the internet for their information, unfiltered by corporate control of information. One of the founding ideas of The Agora was to bring the internet to print. As many mainstream publications are scaling back or closing shop, due to low readership, The New Agora is thriving. We are growing by the month: expanding our reach, print run and, quality. We are concerned about environmental issues like deforestation, but figure that using trees to contribute to a society, which we will be less destructive to our planet a worthy use of them. Oh, and our printer uses 100% recycled newsprint and is FSC certified.