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Free press should report facts only

August 21, 2018

Editor, Daily Times:

Reading your commentary section from Thursday left me a bit bewildered. You demand that it is now time for us to stand up for freedom of the press. I applaud you. Without that true freedom the United States would not be what it is today. But you, like so many of the offended mainstream media, gloss over the fact that the reporting over the last 30 years has become more of a tool. Used by certain ideological leanings and political agendas to influence rather than inform. It has become apparent to most people that the very headlines and words of content in the reporting are constantly trying lead us in one direction or another. Frequently in a more brazen, biased manner than years ago.

You are correct, a “free” press is an absolute. But as a free press you are responsible to get me the facts only. Get them from both sides and present them equally. Truths are not your place to determine because it requires you to make an ethical and moral judgment as to what I or anyone else should be told based on your standards, not mine/ours. The consolidation of the press into fewer and fewer source points has denigrated the integrity of that factual reporting. The AP as an example is utilized by a vast majority of publications. One can see the pre-positions established across the country in the headline wording and placement within any given publication.

We want the press to be there holding the government accountable to all of us, not just to you. Both the press and politicians are polling at record low numbers. Why? Because both have lied and misled. As a country and a people we are fed up and we are telling both of you just that. Though Sgt. Joe Friday of “Dragnet” fame never really said the words, they were attributed to his character and we now say them to you the media ... “Just the facts, ma’am.” We’ll do the rest, thank you very much.

Charles Joyce

Juneau

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