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The University of Alabama's Crimson White has served as the college's student body newspaper of record for over a century.

However, a group of conservative students hopes a new outlet will provide an alternative to those seeking campus news.

The Capstone Free Press has been publishing since March. Unlike The Crimson White, the Capstone Free Press is an openly conservative newspaper hoping to offer a viewpoint to UA students that is more in line with Alabama voters.

"Conservative groups on campus did not have a friendly news outlet before Capstone Free Press, so events that they held were only reported by the existing student newspaper if they were large," said UA student and former Crimson White reporter Ginger Marrow, who helped organize the Capstone Free Press in December 2021.

Marrow studies both political science and public relations (PR). Journalism coursework is required for a PR major. That inspired her to start writing for The Crimson White in September 2021. 

But she said that The Crimson White tended to frame conservative events and issues unfavorably.

In 2020, the Crimson White Editorial Board stated it was committed to "keeping anti-racism at the forefront of our journalistic mission." 

The word "anti-racism" is popularly associated with far-left activist Ibram X. Kendi's Amazon best-seller "How to be an Antiracist," in which he advocates for opposing all policies that lead to unequal outcomes between racial groups and suggests that being "anti-racist" presupposes being "anti-capitalist." 

Later that year, the Editorial Board explicitly endorsed Democrats Joe Biden and Doug Jones in the 2020 elections.

This year, the Editorial Board attacked UA Student Government Association (SGA) presidential candidate Sarah Shield for attending a conference with the conservative student organization Young Americans for Freedom (YAF), accusing them of "racism, Islamaphobia, transphobia and other harmful ideologies."

According to Marrow, YAF is one of the most active conservative groups on UA's campus. 

Marrow said that while working at The Crimson White, she felt like she had to keep her conservatism a secret. She felt this was unrepresentative of UA's student body, which she estimated is around 60% conservative.

She said she doesn't believe The Crimson White's reported information to be inaccurate but just that its reporters are biased about what they choose to report.

SEE ALSO: Conservative students face challenges on Alabama college campuses

"When a paper is committed to 'keeping anti-racism at the forefront' or bashing conservative groups on campus as 'bigoted' and 'extreme,' it can't claim to serve or represent all students," Marrow said.

In August 2021, UA's College Republicans were approached by the Intercollegiate Studies Institute (ISI), a nonprofit organization dedicated to promoting conservative intellectual thought on college campuses across the country.

The ISI worked with College Republicans to establish a chapter at UA.

After Marrow was elected Vice Chair of UA's College Republicans in November, ISI approached her about starting a conservative newspaper.

"I [was] asked to start it because I was the only one with newspaper experience in conservative campus leadership," Marrow said.

Marrow resigned from The Crimson White in February of this year. 

The Capstone Free Press is explicitly political. Marrow said she feels like The Crimson White is political but denies their bias.

Now, the Capstone Free Press publishes an average of one article daily on its website. It publishes both news and opinion and plans to release its first print issue in November. 

Last week, Marrow published an article addressing Planned Parenthood ads that have appeared on The Crimson White's website and print editions in September. 

This week, the Capstone Free Press plans to cover YAF's event featuring Daily Wire commentator and filmmaker Matt Wash, who recently released a successful documentary, "What is a Woman?" which questions the logic of the gender ideology movement.

"Capstone Free Press is honest," Marrow said. "We do not claim to represent the interests of all students, and [Capstone Free Press] is not something every student at [UA] might want to read. Our purpose is bridging a gap in UA's student media that has arisen because our existing outlet isn't frequently challenged. The other part of our purpose is to give conservative UA students a sounding board for their opinions that are rejected for political or content reasons."

Marrow said she hopes Capstone Free Press can grow and be able to produce print editions more frequently. For now, she said she is proud of her team.

To connect with the author of this story, or to comment, email will.blakely@1819news.com or find him on Twitter and Facebook.

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