Speak the speech

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    Democracy is not easy, but it is by far the best form of government we have.

    Participation in democracy means more than voting, though voting is absolutely vital.

    Freedom to discuss, argue, read, listen, write letters, editorials, join groups is also a key element in democracy.

    Freedom of speech and freedom of the press we must honor.

    Civility is absolutely necessary also, but often neglected, forgotten or lost along the way of trying to “win.” But I value the freedom of expression very highly and thus have personally endured eight years of various anonymous hate mail, phone calls threatening my person and home, and even experienced the sheriff coming to my home to check on my safety due to their receiving calls regarding my safety.

    This is a sad commentary on local politics. But let’s remember democracy is the best form of government available; freedom of speech is vital; freedom of advocacy, freedom of voting and responsibility of each one of us is vital to a healthy democracy. And perhaps civility will be learned and honored along the way.

    Carolyn Van Horn,

    city councilmember