The week that was

COMMUNITY SPIRIT Last week’s Minot River Valley Cleanup project went well, with more than a 100 volunteers working over parts of two days to help clean up residential lots owned by the City of Minot. Volunteers cut trees and weeds, mowed grass and generally cleaned debris from the lots in locations throughout the river valley. There is more work to be done, of course, but the volunteers accomplished a lot in their two days of work. Several local companies provided employees to help, and the American Red Cross and Minot Commission on Aging provided sandwiches and water to volunteers. The efforts made a noticable difference in the valley, and the volunteers and everyone involved is to be commended for their work.

CONGRESSIONAL DEFINITION Great, now Congress is attempting to define a journalist. A Senate panel this week passed a measure defining a journalist as part of legislation designed to protect news gatherers from incidents such as one last year when the Justice Department secretly subpoenaed telephone records used by reporters and editors for the Associated Press and secretly obtained emails from a Fox News journalist. The measure passed by the Senate panel defines a journalist as an employee, independent contractor or agent of an entity that disseminates news or information, according to an AP story. The individual would have been employed for one year within the last 20 or three months within the last five years. The legislation would protect reporters and organizations from being forced to reveal identities of confidential sources. We’re glad senators were able to come up with a definition of a journalist, although other than the length of employment requirements, it doesn’t seem to be that complicated.