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Reporting, not endorsing, the news

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The Courier’s Opinion

In Colorado and in South Jeffco, the social and political landscapes have seen significant changes over the last couple of years, and we all know that change can be difficult.
But it can also be newsworthy.
Our mission here at the Courier is to report that news as thoroughly and objectively as possible within the scope of our resources, and to reflect all aspects of the community we cover.
Locally, the changes detailed in our pages recently have included everything from a different and more liberal representative in Congress to the practical results of new state laws on marijuana and firearms and civil unions.
When it comes to illustrating some of these watershed events, the lead photo on our front page last week was worth far more than a thousand words — it showed U.S. Rep. Diana DeGette officiating at one of the first civil-union ceremonies in Colorado. It also showed two men embracing and kissing after their union was formalized under Colorado’s new state law.
The societal changes evident in that picture have made some readers uncomfortable, and they believe it was an inappropriate image for the front page of a community newspaper. Others have said that our use of the photo is proof that the Courier is secretly pushing a “liberal agenda.”  
But the advent of civil unions in Colorado, and the involvement of our local governments and politicians and tax dollars in this development, is a very significant story, no matter where a person stands on the issue. This was a historic event, and our job is to report such news with words and images that tell stories as completely and clearly as possible.
So please don’t believe we are advancing anyone’s agenda through a photo or story that appears on any news page. We’re not in favor of highway accidents, but we report on them frequently. We rarely see eye to eye with our county commissioners, but we describe their activities in great detail.
Readers can rest assured that any biases or opinions the Courier expresses will be confined to this page alone, and that opposing views will be given equal time here as well.
Here, then, is our opinion: We are in fact a community newspaper, and in this community a family does not exclusively consist of two heterosexual parents and their biological children.
That is now reflected in state law. And it also seems like a tolerant, charitable and fair approach.