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Forum: Why a free press is essential to democracy

A free event Monday evening will feature local reporters — including TucsonSentinel.com's Dylan Smith — and politicians Bruce Ash and Steve Kozachik in a discussion of the importance of real news.

The 90-minute forum, which will include brief presentations and ample time to audience questions, will be at the Loft Cinema, 3233 E. Speedway, Monday, Oct. 1 at 6 p.m. Doors open at 5:30 p.m.

The event will feature a presentation on the history of the 1st Amendment by University of Arizona Prof. Jane Bambauer.

Joining in the discussion will be Arizona Daily Star reporters Joe Ferguson and Caitlin Schmidt, former Tucson Weekly Editor Mari Herreras, along with Smith, and Republican National Committeeman Ash and Tucson City Councilman Kozachik. Star cartoonist David Fitzsimmons will be the master of ceremonies.

From the organizers: "Is the First Amendment Freedom of the Press under attack? Or is the media simply engaged in 'fake news' that’s finally being called out for the bias it represents? Come and take part in a panel discussion co-hosted by Indivisible Southern Arizona and Tucson Jews for Justice where the current controversy surrounding the press, bias and the interaction between the media and public officials will be explored."

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