To the Editor:

It really is unfortunate that the Federal Communications Commission eliminated the “Fairness Doctrine” in 1987. It required radio and television broadcasters to provide air time for dissenting views — of course, it never applied to newspapers — but in places like South Dakota where one political party is so dominant, it might be enlightening to hear, see or read more than one point of view occasionally. The elimination of the “Fairness Doctrine” has contributed to the current rise of extreme partisan politics with the result that political parties now apparently expect their elected officials to be more loyal to the party than to the state or nation they are supposed to serve.

A cartoon that appeared on The Daily Republic’s Opinion page Oct. 2 showed Uncle Sam being sprayed with mud from a car spinning its wheels. The car was labeled Democrats. In my opinion, this cartoon was insulting, and just plain wrong. If it was meant to protest the impeachment inquiry initiated by the Democrats in the House of Representatives, it was doubly wrong. An impeachment inquiry is meant to determine if there is sufficient evidence that a president has betrayed his oath of office by acting unlawfully or unethically enough to warrant a trial in the Senate where the evidence will be presented and the Senators vote aye or nay to remove the president from office. Impeachment is a procedure meant to protect the government and the nation from a president who is abusing the power of his office and there is plenty of evidence that this president continues to do just that.

In my opinion, the cartoon should have shown President Trump in the driver’s seat of the car that is slinging mud on Uncle Sam and the passengers in the car would be the Republicans who continue to defend the actions of this president. Will that version of the cartoon ever appear in the Mitchell Daily Republican? Don't hold your breath.

Richard Peterson