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The basis of our governments being the opinion of the people, the very first object should be to keep that right; and were it left to me to decide whether we should have a government without newspapers, or newspapers without a government, I should not hesitate a moment to prefer the latter. But I should mean that every man should receive those papers and be capable of reading them.

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Source Notes: Source: THOMAS JEFFERSON, letter to Edward Carrington, January 16, 1787.The Papers of Thomas Jefferson, ed. Julian P. Boyd, vol. 11, p. 49 .

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