Community Voices
Staff, 10-11-2018

We at the Falls Free Press believe civil discourse to be paramount to holding the fabric of our community together. That's why we have created the Community Voices section of this publication. We will strive to include as many voices as we can in this space in each issue in order to show the diversity of opinions on topics we face as Falls residents, Ohioans, Americans, and human beings. To kick off this section for our inaugural issue, we reached out to the members of Cuyahoga Falls City Council. We asked the councilors to respond in 150-200 words to the Staff Editorial “Enter the Falls Free Press,” which can be found on page two. Here are their responses.

Note: The opinions expressed in Community Voices do not necessarily reflect the views of the Falls Free Press staff or editorial board.

“I could not agree more that Cuyahoga Falls needs additional representation in media. One of the cornerstones of this country is the freedom of the press. This freedom is not a true freedom unless we have a diverse and informative press. If media is only reporting from one perspective or leaving out large amounts of information, then the First Amendment is not truly being upheld. I am glad to see that a group of engaged and eager citizens have taken it upon themselves to fix this problem. I believe that it is a great civic service to try to inform your neighbor in an era when fake news and alternative facts have become the norm. I know that elected officials do not always share the most congenial relationships with the press, but this is also essential in order to hold our elected officials accountable to the people. I believe that Judge Murray Gurfein best summed up this relationship between public official and free press in his legendary ruling in the infamous Pentagon Papers case: ‘The security of the Nation is not at the ramparts alone. Security also lies in the value of our free institutions. A cantankerous press, an obstinate press, an ubiquitous press must be suffered by those in authority in order to preserve the even greater values of freedom of expression and the right of the people to know.’”

--Drew Reilly, Ward One


“I welcome any legitimate community news sites or publications. Yellow journalism has become a very real problem in America and pseudo “news” outlets continue to split our society for the advancement of deep-seated personal beliefs over honest reporting. I believe the public always deserves the most accurate/factual information available, not just what government or the patronage political class within particular government entities wants our community to hear. Lastly, I believe most people are continually distressed by the infotainment aspect of our local media and, again, the convenient relations with authoritative actors in power, which, in my view, ultimately diminishes credibility and actually promotes inequity.”

--Adam Miller, Ward Six


“I applaud you for taking on a leadership role in such an endeavor and couldn’t agree more with your mission statement of bringing our community closer. The division our country has seen these past two years is alarming, with new lows of behavior seemingly happening every day. In my short time returning to Council, I have already witnessed more Council meetings pertaining to this discourse than I have in my previous 8 years combined. Conflicting opinions and reasonable discussion is one thing, but the lack of consideration for each other’s feelings and beliefs and the outright contempt on display by some is disheartening. I believe the vast majority in our country as well as within our city concurs and has faith we will turn this around. I believe in our City leadership and our residents. I am proud to call Cuyahoga Falls my home.”

--Tim Gorbach, At-large


“There’s something very special about the written word. Our ability as human beings, to read and think and learn, to empathize and sympathize, to be inspired and empowered, by simply absorbing and processing the words of another, is quite remarkable.

We are connecting when we read other peoples’ stories. We gain perspective when we hear a variety of opinions. We become a better citizenry when we are educated and informed. The value and importance of good journalism cannot be overstated.”

--Mary Nichols, Ward Four, Council President


Our thanks to the Cuyahoga Falls City Council members who took time out of their busy schedules to respond. Our Community Voices section will appear in each issue of the Falls Free Press, and we will include as many letters as space allows. Our readers can submit letters of up to 200 words to, but this is intended to be a space for civil discourse—emphasis on civil. Therefore, to have your letter published, please do not use hate speech or make personal attacks. We reserve the right to refuse to print or print only excerpts of the submissions we receive due to a lack of space or for any other reason, but it is our sincere goal to publish as many submissions as we can in their entirety, even if some or all of our staff and editorial board may not agree with what you say. We look forward to engaging with the community and helping bring it together.

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