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Now, unfortunately, we stand divided

The free press plays a vital role in our country: Fact-checking political statements, presenting both sides of issues, in-depth coverage and making this information readily available to everyone.

It could be compared to a fourth branch of government, equally important to the other three branches.

A free press holds individuals in the other branches of government accountable for what they say and what they do. It is a strong bridge between the people and our representatives in government.

When the truth is stretched and “facts” are figments, it is the duty of the press to weed out lies and correct mistakes.

Without someone fact-checking statements, who would be the wiser? Still the politician often gets away with it — if the base accepts it, if citizens do not check the details.

The legalization of abortion — the lie claiming that it is only a gob of tissue — was the original issue that split our country. It remains a very strong dividing issue, this and religious rights.

Global warming is also a right to life issue. It will kill many more people than abortion. And how about the control of guns designed for mass murder? Again, a right to life issue.

The most important issues? The proclamation of truth, fairness and civility. And the right to life.

Grace Szwarc

Altoona

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