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John B. OakesJohn B. Oakes
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believe I'm right in saying that I do not think any of them began as early as I did in 1951, when I began my column. But as you've already heard ad nauseam, it was only a monthly column at that.

But there were columnists, one or two, who were what would be called environmental columnists, syndicated, who certainly were operative by the '60s. But it certainly also couldn't be said that very many major newspapers had any interest in the environment as such. The Times, I must say, as a newspaper, had only a peripheral interest. I wouldn't have even thought of my column if I had thought that the Times was adequately covering the subject. And that was, as you've already heard, in 1951.

But I don't think that the Times covered adequately the environmental news during this whole period, right through -- I don't think the Times adequately covered environmental news as such until much later, and I don't think any other major newspaper did until, probably until the '70s. Of course, I still don't think any newspaper gives it the importance that it's due. But I should say, however, because you asked a question about newspapers generally, that, while I really feel the Times' news coverage of the environment was extremely inadequate until let's say the '70s at the earliest, I think it probably was better than most other American newspapers, if not all of them. But there were one or two others that come to my mind.

I believe that the Post-Dispatch, which was always a very good, progressive paper -- I think the Post-Dispatch, in St. Louis, was pretty good on this from very early days. And another one, the Milwaukee Journal, was. And maybe I'm thinking of their editorial positions rather than of their news coverage. I can't now at this point distinguish. But I would mention a

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