Thomas Jefferson had a lot to say about newspapers - some of it good, and some of it not so good.
One of our favorite Jefferson quotes, "... were it left to me to decide whether we should have a government without newspapers or newspapers without a government, I should not hesitate a moment to prefer the latter."
Although Jefferson often found himself at odds with the newspapers of his day, he was intelligent enough to recognize the importance of newspapers, or an unfettered press, to democracy.
This year, as we celebrate National Newspaper Week, Oct. 4-10, our theme is "Newspapers: Carrying the Torch of Freedom."
We hope this slogan assures our readers that newspapers will continue to work outside of government to represent their interests. Newspapers are privately owned businesses, free of government regulation, but we have a precious power guaranteed by the First Amendment. That power, or freedom, will continue to serve the public in the future as newspapers continue to carry the torch of freedom.
National Newspaper Week is designated each year to acknowledge the historical importance of newspapers while reinforcing our role as a vital and vigorous news medium today and in the future as our industry employs changing technology to remain the leading gatherer, editor and dispenser of news in this nation.
At the Morning Journal, we've been referred to as the "Sunshine Law police" because of our diligence in pursuing the public's right to know through the open records and open meetings laws. We're proud of that reputation.
We're also proud of our Morning Journal Mission Statement and try to take this opportunity every October to reinforce it by sharing it with our readers.
Our mission statement is:
"To provide our readers with an appealing product, delivered in a timely manner, providing the most accurate, honest and comprehensive editorial coverage of Columbiana County. To provide the most accurate, honest and comprehensive editorial coverage of Columbiana County, our first obligation is to our credibility - that is, to the public at large and not to any other person, business or special interest."
We endeavor every day to fulfill that mission statement and hope that the information we publish remains important in assuring that government for the people, and by the people, continues in this country.