NEW YORK—In response to the attack on the Capital Gazette newsroom, PEN America Chief Executive Officer Suzanne Nossel released the following statement:

“PEN America is devastated by the news of cold-blooded murder in an American newsroom. Word that dedicated journalists, editors, and staff were killed and wounded while at work in a community newsroom sends shockwaves through our country. It is a devastating reminder of the acts of everyday courage entailed in reporting the news faithfully, knowing that the impact and reverberation of stories may be impossible to predict or control. At a time of incessant attacks on journalists from the White House, including repeated declarations that the media is an “enemy of the American people,” citizens must mobilize in defense of those willing to take the risks necessary to report stories we need to hear. PEN America mourns alongside the surviving staff of the Capital Gazette as well as all the families and friends of those targeted and the many thousands of readers who will suffer from the impact of this unspeakable tragedy. The determination and bravery of the Capital Gazette team in publishing the paper as usual this morning is an inspiration to all of us to rise up to safeguard the institution of the press that needs and deserves our unflinching defense.”


PEN America stands at the intersection of literature and human rights to protect open expression in the United States and worldwide. We champion the freedom to write, recognizing the power of the word to transform the world. Our mission is to unite writers and their allies to celebrate creative expression and defend the liberties that make it possible.


Anoosh Gasparian, External Relations Coordinator: