Sunday, September 15, 2013

Letting the Government Define Us

I'm fascinated by the prospect of the Federal government defining who a 'journalist' is and enshrining that definition in federal law.  It is particularly interesting since the same moral relativists who didn't want the definition of marriage that was the Defense of Marriage Act, now want to tell people that without the proper credentials they cannot publish as journalists.

In full disclosure, I am not now, nor have I ever been a journalist.  I blog.  I have owned several journals over my lifetime.  I tended to use them to chronicle angst that would put Alanis Morisette to shame.  Faith and a happy marriage put an end to all of that.

I'm no reporter either.  The intended definition of 'journalist' does seem to be more appropriate for a reporter.  Enough teasers...

The Judiciary Committee is "defining a "covered journalist" as an employee, independent contractor or agent of an entity that disseminates news or information. The individual would have been employed for one year within the last 20 or three months within the last five years."  (Donna Cassata.

This is supposed to be a response to the Justice Department secretly subpoenaing two months of telephone records from the Associated Press, and emails and more from James Rosen (and his parents!) at Fox News.  The craziness of this response is that it is trying to 'protect' the press from government over-reach and intrusion.  This narrow definition will provide no protection for you, however, if you talk about politics on the phone, or share comments via email and the NSA is listening to you that day.

Also note that Senators, Schumer, Feinstein, and Durbin, who have all argued that corporations are evil, now are granting freedom of speech only to those who can show some evidence of a relationship to corporate news.  

So if you weren't interested in Catholics and other Christians who have been pushed into violating their religious beliefs via the HHS mandate, perhaps you want to protect freedom of speech for little bloggers like me.

Or maybe you'll go along with this restriction of freedoms because you will be one of the 'journalists' protected by it.  I would caution you that dancing that close to a fire generally does not end well.  Ask the Jews who thought that because they didn't practice their faith, and they worked closely with the Nazis, they would be protected.  Oh wait, you can't. 

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