Letter: Public needs reliable journalism

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Free speech is one of the unique fundamental cornerstones of our western democracy.

Newspapers, radio and television and more recently, the internet, have played a central role in safeguarding that precious freedom. For this, we owe our expressions of gratitude to the local, regional and national print and broadcast news organizations.

Journalists are the diligent troops on the front lines in the battle for truth. Every day, good journalists, editors and media managers, including those at The Columbian, provide us with wide-ranging news and reporting we can trust as honest and forthright.

Readers and viewers are the captivated audience for current local, national and world news and events. Recently, large segments of this reliant following have unfortunately fallen prey to unscrupulous journalists and news organizations engaged in overt propagandizing. Too often, it seems the mainstream media has been party to political bias, skewed polls, fake news and unverified sources of information.

Journalists and media managers should surrender their private agendas and political preferences at the front door; always verify the accuracy of their news content; never accept material from unreliable sources. Their reader/viewer is dependent upon them for the truth, for truth is the holy grail of free speech.