I moved to Western North Carolina about eight years ago, and although I do not live in Asheville, I have always looked forward to picking up a copy of the Mountain Xpress on my weekly trek in to the grocery, because there was usually a column or article written by Cecil Bothwell. His thoughtful, well-written and sometimes irreverent words made me reach for the Xpress with anticipation, since the larger, establishment paper offered me nothing but pablum.
Now it looks as if the Xpress has decided to join the ranks of the pablum pushers. To fire Cecil Bothwell is to turn your back on what it means to be an alternative, community-based newspaper. I guess that you are so intent on becoming the weekly shopper—lots of ads with a few columns of filler disguised as news—that you have lost your way. How sad for what the Xpress once was and for Asheville. I will not be pulling the Xpress off the rack much anymore.
— Maxine Dalton