This is important: How well do you know the five freedoms guaranteed you by the First Amendment to the United States Constitution?

If you can’t quickly remember them all, you can cheat by glancing at the column adjacent to this editorial written by our colleague David Chavern — which you should do now, because again, this is important.

It’s important because these freedoms are the bedrock of our society, a foundation that at one time or another has been either lauded or vilified by nearly every nation on Earth.

Such praise and contempt come with a price. These are freedoms that must be saved, savored and exercised by the people who stand on such foundations. If not, contempt wins and the foundation crumbles beneath our feet.

Cherishing and implementing these freedoms are largely up to each of us, but when it comes to the role of safe-guarding, no source is better than your local newspaper — two words that carry much weight.

Local because the information you need most in your daily life is the information that happens right here in Watauga County. Local politics, events, crime and feature stories all add to your ability to make thoughtful, reasoned decisions about your life, your money, your time.

And newspaper, because for hundreds of years no source of delivering that information has been better than getting the news of our community directly to you.

Of course, the means of delivering that news has evolved and will continue to.

What will remain constant are those five freedoms inherent in the life of every American.

And, that’s as important as it gets.

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