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'A Higher Standard'



We can download PDF versions of The Anarchist's Cookbook. It contains evil and destructive things that were open press before the Internet. This was; "one of the greatest acts of irresponsibility in publishing history," according to Saturday Review Magazine, but it was allowed as "Freedom of the Press." The news media is held to a higher standard, offering current events with confirmed sources (Mailbox, June 15).  

President Kennedy predicted functions of the press in his speech which begins;

"The very word 'secrecy' is repugnant in a free and open society ... No president should fear public scrutiny. For from that comes understanding ... . I am asking (the press') help ... informing and alerting the American people. ... I have complete confidence in the response and dedication of our citizens whenever they are fully informed. ... And that is why our press is protected by our First Amendment. The only business in America that is specifically protected by the Constitution: Not primarily to amuse and entertain, not to emphasize the trivial and sentimental, not to simply give the public what it wants; but to inform, to arouse, to reflect, to state our dangers and opportunities, to indicate our crises and our choices; to lead, mold and educate, and sometimes even anger public opinion. This means greater coverage and anaylisis of international news, for it is no longer far away and foreign, but close at hand and local."

The idea that established news sources feed the American public mistruths is hard to swallow. Since President Trump's outing of "Fake News," I feel abused. The public has the right to know the truth about the events happening around the world, and when we're fed mistruths, it's not "Free Press;" it's lies. We all end up with a mental illness of not knowing what to think. 

Tom Stephens, Arcata

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