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Panelists address current state of freedom of speech, press

Six panelists and community members expressed views on the news and free press Feb. 24 at the CircleUp MidPen’s community conversation, “Freedom of Speech and the Press: Finding Truth in the Information Age.” The event was held at the Mathews Boys and Girls Club, and marked the organization’s second year of inquiring into current events.

Dr. Rachel Bitecofer, professor and assistant director for the Wason Center for Public Policy at Christopher Newport University, led the conversation. According to Bitecofer, people have been taught to be skeptical about the news, and she added, “by warning people to be good consumers of information, the message they’ve internalized is, it’s all fake.”

Panel participants included:

Bill Sizemore, retired Virginian-Pilot staff writer and author. He said freedom of the press in the United States is in pretty good shape when compared to other parts of the world, with the greater threat coming from what he ...

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