The importance of a free press has never been greater. Neither has the necessity of trustworthy fact checking.

While most presidents can be expected to slant facts in their favor to some extent, Donald Trump’s casual relationship to facts is alarming. Social media plays to the extremists on both sides, and distrust of the media abounds.

In this environment, many may end up feeling that they cannot believe anything, rendering them susceptible to manipulation. The free press is not “the enemy of the people.” It is one of the pillars of our democracy.

The threat to defund the Corporation for Public Broadcasting and National Public Radio should be a red flag to all. Whatever your individual political viewpoint, we all will benefit from being informed about the many issues that confront us. Ideology is not a good tool for effective, fair governance.

Nancy Barber