Wednesday, May 6, 2015

Diffident Defenders of the 1st Amendment

"Fair is foul, and foul is fair"

So today's Gazette banner front page headline only makes me wonder where they were when a true believer Nitwit woman grabbed my iPhone at a highly public presentation in the taxpayer owned Amherst Regional Middle School and Maria Geryk, the town's highest paid employee, backed up her heavy handed actions.

And I would argue that a School Superintendent is more representative of "the government" than an Amherst Town Meeting member, elected with 70 votes, who only has the "power" of office when Town Meeting is in session.

Simply put some Cover-Your-Ass UMass bean counter  (since it was a Sunday morning probably not all that high ranking) fell for a perceived threat that was more bluff than substance, and turned off the WMUA radio transmitter.  And yes, I'm sure all three listeners were very disappointed.

On average I get threatened almost daily to remove names, stories, or on more rare occasions questioned about my reliable anonymous sources (which I NEVER give up).  My standard response comes from my favorite journo professor:  "Fuck 'em!".

Well, maybe I don't actually say that ... but you get my drift. 

Every now and again the First Amendment requires a staunch goal-line defense. "The tree of liberty must be refreshed from time to time with the blood of patriots and tyrants."

If you're not up to the task, then get the Hell out of the way.

13 comments:

Anonymous said...

I think you should stop pretending that news is there to inform. It is there to sell ads, in a newspaper, in a blog or otherwise. Reporters and bloggers are typically just tools to write content so ads can be sold. No fair requirement, no balanced requirement, barely even the requirement to say true things.

Also, if your constitutional rights were violated, get that woman punished. Sue, I will donate if your rights were violated.

Also please clarify the violation so I can feel justified in sending you financial support for your lawsuit, what type of government force was used against you to quell your communication. Who was the officer that placed his or her hands on you. Who was the authority figure you were afraid of? It sounds like you were attacked by a private citizen and the government official liked it (which is her right), but did not cause it. It sounds like a voluntary/yet illegal action by a citizen. Did you press charges against that person?

Could you finish the reporting and clarify? Either way, please do not pretend that this blog or the gazette is there for truth, justice or anything of the part....and of course they would not report about you getting attacked, you spit venom at them all the time. Like this post.

Larry Kelley said...

Said the Cowardly Anon Nitwit.

Anonymous said...

When you don't have facts on your side, just call the other person names.

Larry Kelley said...

The oldest rule in the book -- the one that empowers me to say things CAN's like you think but don't have the balls to say -- is, "The ultimate defense against (name calling) libel/slander is to be telling the truth."

And in your case CAN ...

Anonymous said...

Larry,

I can sense that you are fully caffeinated this morning.

I share your embrace of the First Amendment, but I wonder whether the full embrace involves people running a steady gauntlet of personal nastiness that we see on the web on a daily basis. (As always, this probably involves some measure of repentance on my part.)

I think that recent commentators calling Amherst politics "a blood sport" are onto something real that is having a deleterious effect on our shared life together.

When it becomes safe to do so, I'm hoping that some past candidate for office, or officeholder, in Amherst will provide us with the diary of what it's like to be on the receiving end, day after day, of all this bad stuff....when all they wanted was to volunteer their time in service to Amherst.

Rich Morse

Larry Kelley said...

Catherine Sanderson's blog is still available on the web.

(And I'm always fully caffeinated.)

Anonymous said...

Why should UMass pay for Amherst's free speech?

Kevin Collins said...

Hey! This story is about me, why are you guys taking up all my column inches? hahahaha

Kevin

Anonymous said...

Does anyone else think that it's weird that Vira, who is on School Committee, asks lengthy questions at Town Meeting regarding school issues.

Shouldn't she be answering the questions?

Only in Amherst, I guess...

Anonymous said...

It will be a long 3 years with her on the committee.

Anonymous said...

There are a lot of questions our school committee members don't ask. Questions are helpful and information is useful. Don't we teach that in our schools?

Anonymous said...

We, in our schools, don't really care for questions. Especially if one questions authority. God forbid you do that.

Anonymous said...

Now let's talk about the Second Amendment!