By Faye Gaston

National Newspaper Week is October 4-10, 2020. The theme this year is "America Needs Journalists".

There is one week set aside each year to salute newspapers for the important role they have played in our nation.

This is a role that goes back to the beginning of the United States. Our Founding Fathers wrote "freedom of the press" into the Constitution's Bill of Rights.

During this year's COVID-19 pandemic, newspapers still needed to fulfil the vital information function the Founding Fathers envisioned.

Journalists informed the public about the many aspects of the pandemic, such as testing, mask wearing, and back-to-school decisions.

Newspapers serve as "watchdogs" over government. Meetings were conducted during this pandemic via phone conference and newspapers informed the public on what the government is doing.

Newspapers introduce readers to interesting people.

They tell about church, school, sports, and social events. Crimes are reported. Results of bad weather are given. Obituaries are read.

It is said the most potent tool of newspapers is the spotlight that shines on problems and solutions. This includes local, state and national issues.

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