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Est. April 5, 2002
October 25, 2018 - Issue 761

The Power of Writing
and the
First Ammendment

"The media is still the 'enemy of the people.' Today.
No criticism of violent policies or violent regimes is
acceptable! Beat journalists up or kill them. The killing
of criticism directed at the powerful isn’t news in the
world, particularly not news in the US."

Real News: The Perpetrators of Fake News—History!

Life is a process; in the process of correcting our own society we save ourselves and activate the forces that will preserve our civilization… [the] basic ailment is man’s continuing inhumanity to man, the perpetual assault upon the dignity of some individuals by others, more powerful individuals.

Louis Lomax, The Negro Revolt, (First black television journalist)

Don’t dare read, let alone write anything!

But Frederick Douglass learned to read, anyway. At great risk. So when the time came, he writes for the abolitionist newspaper, The North Star.

Ida B. Wells writes for the Free Speech press—until an angry mob of Americans, opposed to her articles calling for an end to the practice of lynching, burned the newspaper building down to the ground, forcing Wells to move north and write articles at the New York Age.

David Walker writes and publishes An Appeal to Coloured Citizens of the World, an anti-slavery and call for black unity document that set Walker to the left of white abolitionists.

It’s not easy to speak out, but the presses roll out papers and the journalists continue writing. Generations of a people escaping to the North found their voices, as so many of them recounted the cruelty of enslavement, of beatings and rape, of terror in legalized segregation, mob violence, lynching, shootings, and massacres.

There’s a history of reading and of writing by black Americans, and, despite the insistence by this government and its white citizens that enslaved blacks and freed blacks will never learn to read, let alone write, black voices persisted in reporting, uncovering the narrative of American innocence, even while critics declared their effort—“fake” news.

The Chicago Defender.

The New York Amsterdam News

The Messenger

The Pittsburgh Courier

Black Panther newspaper

Don’t dare read, let alone write anything!

And we are here again.

GOP Rep. Greg Gianforte won in a special election last year after body slamming a Guardian reporter. The reporter, Ben Jacobs, doing what a “free press” journalist do, asks Gianforte a question about his health care bill. Gianforte was not in favor of the Affordable Care Act, and, he doesn’t want to answer Jacobs’ questions. He knows that the reporter has heard the tape in which Gianforte has denounced the Affordable Care Act. So when Jacobs persists, Gianforte gets angry and slams the reporter to the ground.

Gianforte shouts that he’s sick and tired of these questions. Sick and tired of “guys” like the reporter, harassing him.

Get the hell out of here!”

And down goes Jacobs. Glasses knocked from his face and broken.

That was in 2017, May. And now, this October, 2018, the president of the U.S., at a rally in Montana of his base, most sporting the infamous MEGA hat—sorry, I have to repeat this again—the president of the U.S. sparks the consensus of this cheering, placard-Make-America-Great-Again-baring crowd, with the taunt, Gianforte is “my kind of guy.”

Anybody that can do a body slam… That’s my kind of guy.”

This embrace of violence from a president of the US and a citizenry bitter and resentful is no aberration.

This newest denouncement of humanity, of decency, of democracy, of empathy from the president comes just days after the October 2, 2018 disappearance in the Saudi embassy in Istanbul of the Washington Post writer, Saudi-born, Jamal Khashoggi, and in the week when the Turkish government is reporting that Khashoggi was beaten, drugged, and dismembered—while alive! Was he, really? asks the president. Who’s he anyway!

Khashoggi escapes to the US from the ire of the current ruler, the crown prince, bin Salman. Living in Virginia, Khashoggi thinks he somewhat safe. A permanent resident of the US. Fearful, yes, of the crown prince. But his home is in the US, in Virginia!

America’s trademark, violence, and I don’t mean it’s historical engagement in cruelty, bullying, rape or the institutionalization of disenfranchisement. I’m looking at the violence of the cover up! Black journalists are crazy and they lie! Dr. Anita Hill is “a little bit nutty and a little bit slutty”! Dr. Christine Blasey-Ford is “mixed up”!

American innocence never recedes to a voiceless and invisible corner of the American discourse. Always present, it’s no wonder warnings from our past is relevant and true today: “...when you have never seen vicious mobs lynch your mothers and fathers at will and drawn your sisters and brothers at whim; when you have seen hate-filled policemen curse, kick, brutalize, and even kill your black brothers and sisters with impunity…” (Dr. Martin L. King, Jr., “Letter from Birmingham Jail,” August, 1963)

Don’t remember a history that hasn’t had the cleaners come around, removing the evidence of state violence.

The media is still the “enemy of the people.” Today. No criticism of violent policies or violent regimes is acceptable! Beat journalists up or kill them. The killing of criticism directed at the powerful isn’t news in the world, particularly not news in the US. So there’s a reason to slap the label “fake news” on the pages of the New York Times. There’s a reason to steer Americans toward Fox News, where there are no enemies of the people, but rallies of people, shouting and cheering when the president shouts, “witch hunt!” “witch hunt!” “witch hunt!” Perpetuate violence on designated the enemy!

Emmett Till, who?

James Byrd, dragged? You say he’s dead! We don’t know anything!

Khashoggi? Oh, yeah, he left. Yeah, he left.

Breaking News. It’s the Saudis. Listen: Khashoggi is dead. He entered the Saudi embassy with fists up. Fighting, yeah. Then something happened. Got it!

And the response from the president of the US: I believe them! They have money! I like money!

And if the Washington Post writes anything to contrary, then it’s fake news, Americans!

The New York Times is fake news to begin with!

Oh, yes, not fake news—those mid-term elections on November 6th! Editorial Board member and Columnist, Lenore Jean Daniels, PhD, has a Doctorate in Modern American Literature/Cultural Theory. Contact Dr. Daniels.




is published every Thursday
Executive Editor:
David A. Love, JD
Managing Editor:
Nancy Littlefield, MBA
Peter Gamble

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