Last night during the Kicking Back show, one of my producers, wonderful man that he is, passed me a breaking news item about an amendment proposed by none other than Arlen Spector, long-time-Republican-operative-turned-Democrat, designed to stifle first amendment rights and muzzle citizen journalists. YOU know who I mean, folks–anyone who seeks and reports FACT, unbiased by paycheck. That would be…most Americans!
And, be advised, folks: these are the co sponsors. VOTE THEM OUT, BUT BEFORE YOU DO SO, HOUND THEM OUT OF THEIR WITS BY ANGRY PHONE CALLS, SNAIL MAIL, DEMONSTRATION, FAX AND HUMAN OUTRAGE AT THIS!!!
|Sen Gillibrand, Kirsten E. [NY] – 3/23/2009||Sen Graham, Lindsey [SC] – 2/13/2009|
|Sen Hagan, Kay [NC] – 5/18/2009||Sen Kaufman, Edward E. [DE] – 11/5/2009|
|Sen Klobuchar, Amy [MN] – 3/30/2009||Sen Lugar, Richard G. [IN] – 2/13/2009|
|Sen McCaskill, Claire [MO] – 3/23/2009||Sen Murray, Patty [WA] – 3/30/2009|
|Sen Schumer, Charles E. [NY] – 2/13/2009||Sen Udall, Tom [NM] – 11/18/2009|
I must ask: who the hell ARE these people???! Are they INSANE?? Or just hopelessly stupid, bought off, ingnorant fools who apparently have never heard of our Constitution and don’t care to.
By: Mark Hemingway
Commentary Staff Writer
12/03/09 5:10 PM EST
An amendment to a bill currently being considered by the Senate would deny ordinary citizens doing vital investigations in the public interest the same legal protections as professional journalists. If it were to become law, the change could significantly stifle important citizen journalism efforts similar to the recent ACORN expose.
The Senate is currently considering a new press shield law, s.448, sponsored by Sen. Arlen Specter, D-Pa. The bill would “maintain the free flow of information to the public by providing conditions for the federally compelled disclosure of information by certain persons connected with the news media.” Except that Sen. Diane Feinstein, D-Cal., and Sen. Dick Durbin, D-Ill., want to ensure that any new journalistic protections would only apply to professional journalists and not regular citizens. An amendment filed by Durbin and Feinstein would modify the legislation to define journalists thusly: AMENDMENTS intended to be proposed by Mrs. FEINSTEIN (for herself and Mr. DURBIN)
In section 10(2)(A), strike clause (iii) and insert the following:
(iii) obtains the information sought while working as a salaried employee of, or independent contractor for, an entity—
(I) that disseminates information by print, broadcast, cable, satellite, mechanical, photographic, electronic, 1or other means; and
(aa) publishes a newspaper, book, magazine, or other periodical;
(bb) operates a radio or television broadcast station, network, cable system, or satellite carrier, or a channel or programming service for any such station, network, system, or carrier;
(cc) operates a programming service; or
(dd) operates a news agency or wire service;
In section 10(2)(B), strike ‘‘and’’ at the end.
In section 10(2)(C), strike the period at the end and insert ‘‘; and’’.
In section 10(2), add at the end the following:
(D) does not include an individual who gathers or disseminates the protected information sought to be compelled anonymously or under a pseudonym.
While the ACORN story has stung congressional Democrats and pointed out the deficiencies of the mainstream media, there’s no basis for Durbin and Feinstein’s amendment that seems anything other than vindictive or an attempt to protect the powerful. It’s telling that bloggers on both the left and the right are in total agreement this is very bad law.
In fact–it is NO LAW AT ALL, completely violating, as it does, the First Amendment of the U.S.Constitution, otherwise known as the first item of the ten in our Bill of Rights, which, in case you did not know, proscribes government interference with our right to free expression, to wit:
Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.
Well, we all know how THAT’S working out…but there’s no reason we cannot hunker down and exercise all our legal options to restore adherence to our Founding Documents, First Amendment included, and the prodigious work of millions of Americans is testimony to that. In the last year, I have traveled this great and glorious country far and wide and met so many incredibly committed Patriots, fighting for our freedoms on both foreign and native soil. 2.1 Million of them met in Washington, D.C. on September 12th to exercise their First Amendment right and express their feelings about what is being perpetrated against them by big, corrupt, usurping government; hundreds spent nearly 20 hours a day for over ten days, working at Continental Congress 2009, and CONTINUE to work, finalizing documents and speaking at meetings in their local areas to inform and inspire.
And, what is our government doing? I mean–ASIDE from lighting a Christmas tree with only red and yellow lights on it [what’s THAT about???!], trying to shove an unwieldy health care program down the throats of Americans who are overwhelmingly against it, perpetrating fraud upon fraud upon them and generally just plain whooping it up at the expense of the ever burdened tax payers, some of whom, like Sherry Peel Jackson, now sit in jail for exercising their rights. Not to mention our military prisoners like Michael Behenna, the Leavenworth 10, Pendleton 8 and now three Navy SEALS, charged with the capture of a known terrorist who claims they gave him a fat lip in the process.
Last Monday’s The Dame Truth and last night’s Kicking Back both featured these issues, as will tomorrow’s The Dame Truth with guest JB Williams and possibly Sgt. Tim Harrington. The fight continues, folks, and we SHALL prevail!
So, warm yourselves with the light of commitment to the protection and preservation of our Constitution. It’s going to be a long winter, but eventually Spring will arrive, and with it–another huge convocation in Washington and Valley Forge! For more information, contact firstname.lastname@example.org or go to http://taxdayteaparty.com. Make plans everyone…rest by the fire for the summer ahead…and hold fast to your dreams, for without them, “life is a broken winged bird that cannot fly”.
Hold fast to dreams
For if dreams die
Life is a broken-winged bird
That cannot fly.
Hold fast to dreams
For when dreams go
Life is a barren field
Frozen with snow