Skip to comments.Dick Durbin: Are bloggers and tweeters entitled to constitutional protection?
Posted on 05/26/2013 4:57:16 PM PDT by Sub-Driver
Dick Durbin: Are bloggers and tweeters entitled to constitutional protection?
Share By Doug Powers May 26, 2013 05:53 PM
**Written by Doug Powers
Illinois Sen. Dick Durbin has in the past had a very subjective and abstract view of the Constitution, and on Fox News Sunday he once again wondered which people might be entitled to constitutional protections and which people might not:
Youve raised an important point and I heard Sen. Graham call for special counsel, Durbin said. Im not ready to do this at this moment. I would like to know if Holder has any conflict in here beyond what we heard when it comes to the Fox case.
But here is the bottom line the media shield law, which I am prepared to support, and I know Sen. Graham supports, still leaves an unanswered question, which I have raised many times: What is a journalist today in 2013? We know its someone that works for Fox or AP, but does it include a blogger? Does it include someone who is tweeting? Are these people journalists and entitled to constitutional protection? We need to ask 21st century questions about a provision that was written over 200 years ago.
Does Dick think the First Amendment only covers journalists (and apparently only ones who write with quills on parchment)?
If Durbin ever bothered to actually read the Constitution hed know that the Founders knew all too well the danger of having somebody like, well, Dick Durbin, ever ending up as the arbiter of whos entitled to rights.
a special counsel is a massive mistake.
it would only serve to sweep these issues behind the curtains until after the mid-terms -— and we have already seen that hiding things until after elections is the forte of the obamites.
let it all hang out.
That question is settled law.
408 U.S. 665 (1972)
HAYES ET AL., JUDGES.
*703 We are unwilling to embark the judiciary on a long and difficult journey to such an uncertain destination. The administration of a constitutional newsman’s privilege would present practical and conceptual difficulties of a high order. Sooner or later, it would be necessary to define those categories of newsmen who qualified for the privilege, a questionable procedure in light of the traditional doctrine that liberty of the press is the right of the lonely pamphleteer who uses carbon paper or a mimeograph just as much as of the large metropolitan publisher who utilizes the latest photocomposition methods.
Cf. In re Grand Jury Witnesses, 322 F. Supp. 573, 574 (ND Cal. 1970). Freedom of the press is a “fundamental personal right” which “is not confined to newspapers and periodicals. It necessarily embraces pamphlets and leaflets. . . . The press in its historic connotation comprehends every sort of publication which affords a vehicle of information and opinion.” Lovell v. Griffin, 303 U. S. 444, 450, 452 (1938). See also Mills 705*705 v. Alabama, 384 U. S. 214, 219 (1966); Murdock v. Pennsylvania, 319 U. S. 105, 111 (1943). The informative function asserted by representatives of the organized press in the present cases is also performed by lecturers, political pollsters, novelists, academic researchers, and dramatists. Almost any author may quite accurately assert that he is contributing to the flow of information to the public, that he relies on confidential sources of information, and that these sources will be silenced if he is forced to make disclosures before a grand jury.
just because you’re a govt employee doesn’t mean you know jack about the Constitution
‘freedom of speech’ isn’t limited to print. I could be standing on a street corner... sending smoke signals from my backyard... or communicating via sound waves across a wire... it’s all MY speech, how I choose to express myself.
someone needs to send this idiot to remedial Constitution studies for a month
Bloggers are now an enemy of the state. They have ravaged the false flag at Newtown. (Yes I said it, when you see the first drop of blood - please lets all know. Until then it seems to be a smallish Operation Northwoods style event.)
Durbin would seem to be an enemy of the People. The lines are getting more defined.
Although this kind of messaging did not exist when the Constitution was ratified, I put social electronic messaging under the 1A right to peaceably assemble. Insights to the contrary welcome.
“It necessarily embraces pamphlets and leaflets.”
Dang right....ask the Mexicans who hawk the escort services on the Las Vegas strip....
Are dumbass senators entitled to Constitutional protection?
Does he not understand that it is freedom of conscience and freedom of expression, the free circulation of ideas, and strict limitations on coercive powers which might be assumed by elected and appointed government officials over those precious freedoms which the First Amendment was intended to protect.
During America's founding period, the Committees of Correspondence, the broadsides, the pamphlets, the essays written over a pseudonym, the newspapers, and any other then-modern method of communicating those ideas were protected from the hand of any who, like him and his fellow "progressives," would seek to limit free speech and political discourse in America.
Technology has changed how circulation of ideas may occur; however, now, as then, human nature and the desire of some men to dominate and control the consciences and free expression of other men has not changed, and likely will not change.
In America, however, a once-wise and knowledgeable citizenry decided that it would structure its own form of self-government, placing those who governed in positions of subservience to themselves, under a written Constitution which excluded their Creator-endowed and unalienable rights from that government's purview.
Is that clear, Mr. Durbin?
Should not even have to ask that question.
YES, they are. That is what the Bill of Rights are — to protect the citizenry from over-bearing government.
Free speech is not limited to media reporters. Free speech is a right all citizens have — whether it is letters to the editor or blogs or radio commentary or talking on a sidewalk.
After all, rights come from the government don’t they?/Sarc with a capital S.
I also add that that free speech can be anonymous as was much of the political speech in the days of our founders.
303 U.S. 444 (1938)
CITY OF GRIFFIN.
The liberty of the press is not confined to newspapers and periodicals. It necessarily embraces pamphlets and leaflets. These indeed have been historic weapons in the defense of liberty, as the pamphlets of Thomas Paine and others in our own history abundantly attest. The press in its historic connotation comprehends every sort of publication which affords a vehicle of information and opinion. What we have had recent occasion to say with respect to the vital importance of protecting this essential liberty from every sort of infringement need not be repeated.
Durbin and his ilk are a threat to our survival as a free republic.
‘Dick Durbin before he dicks you..’
Durbin just proving that you have to meet a lot of Dicks before you can meet a quality politician.
In all seriousness, bloggers and tweeters are more entitled to Constitutional protection than the lying propagandists at MSNBC are, for example.
Durbin now wants to dictate to American Citizens on how they shall live, post on line and send text messages. Durbin hates it when Americans make decisions for themselves and have their own opinion.
Since when did the constitution become an entitlement to a select few? Isn’t Turban one of those ___holes that flew to visit Saddam Hussein just before we invaded Iraq?
well it’s not like they’re REAL journalists, like NBC or CNN, where they have to check their facts so they will always get it right /s
Disclaimer: Opinions posted on Free Republic are those of the individual posters and do not necessarily represent the opinion of Free Republic or its management. All materials posted herein are protected by copyright law and the exemption for fair use of copyrighted works.