Thread by wagglebee.
Washington, DC (LifeNews.com) -- No sooner had the video gone up of popular Hispanic actor Eduardo Verástegui denouncing presidential candidate Barack Obama on abortion than YouTube officials took it down. The video sharing site removed the full version of the video, which showed graphic images of abortions.
It did, however, leave an edited version in place that contains the Bella actor urging Latinos to vote against Obama without the footage of babies who have died from abortions.
The Verástegui video has already caught fire across the Internet with more than 8,000 people viewing it in only two days....
I repeat my admiration and appreciation for Buffy Spencer and her paper, The Republican, for staying on top of this story. Without such media attention I shudder at what might have happened to poor child Haleigh as the squad lined her up for organ harvest and death.
SPRINGFIELD - The effort by the state Department of Children and Families to bar the press from hearing 14-year-old Haleigh Poutre tell her story of child abuse goes against the constitutional rights of her stepfather to a fair trial and the press to have access to court proceedings, according to a document filed in court on Friday.
In the document, The Republican asks Judge Judd J. Carhart to reject the move by the state to ban the media from Haleigh's court appearances in the upcoming trial of Jason D. Strickland.
Along with citing extensive public interest in the case, attorney Joseph P. Pessolano, on behalf of the newspaper, cited the role the press played in bringing the Poutre case to the forefront of the effort that resulted in a major overhaul of the state agency in its oversight of child abuse cases.
"Just as the press was instrumental in supporting and fostering the reform of (the state Department of Social Services), so the press' critical role continues as it covers the legal proceedings in this most newsworthy and important case," wrote Pessolano.
He called it "curious, and some would say ironic," that the agency that failed to protect Haleigh "now waves her privacy interests as a banner" in an effort to violate the constitutional rights of Strickland and the press.
Strickland, 34, was accused, along with his late wife, Holli A. Strickland, Haleigh's adoptive mother, of assaulting the then-11-year-old girl in Westfield in September 2005, resulting in a serious brain injury. He has pleaded innocent to charges of assault and battery on a child, with substantial bodily injury, and is due to face trial late next month.
The Department of Children and Families has custody of Haleigh, and filed a motion asking Carhart to exclude the media from any court appearance of Haleigh. Now undergoing treatment at a rehabilitation hospital in Boston, Haleigh was to be called to testify at a pre-trial hearing to determine if she is competent to appear as a witness against her stepfather.
A hearing on the state's request to bar the press is set for Oct. 1 before Carhart. That hearing will immediately precede the start of the competency hearing.
In the motion on the newspaper's behalf, Pessolano wrote, "To a large extent, the public interest in this case arises from the failure of the Department of Social Services (now the Department of Children and Families) to protect the child from harm in the face of clear indications that she was being physically abused."
"In fact, public disclosure by the press of DSS's failures and omissions in this case led to an outcry for legislative reform," Pessolano added.
Gov. Deval L. Patrick signed into law last July legislation which imposed new rules on how the agency handles the cases of children who have had previous contact with state social workers.
"The case is of enormous public interest and has been followed closely by both print and broadcast media, locally, statewide, and even nationally," Pessolano wrote. "The Republican alone has published some 172 articles concerning the case, identifying Ms. Poutre as the victim of abuse, and in many of those cases publishing her photograph."
Banning the media from the proceedings would leave The Republican in the "the patently absurd position that all interested members of the public would be free to attend the competency hearing but a reporter from the newspaper is to be barred from the courtroom because his or her presence, seated with a notepad among spectators, will adversely affect the child," the motion argues.
That would leave the newspaper in a position to interview someone in attendance for a second-hand version of what transpired, "virtually ensuring an inaccurate report," Pessolano said. "Such a ridiculous limitation upon the proper role of the press cannot be sanctioned."
Earlier in the week, Strickland's defense lawyer, Alan J. Black, also filed a motion opposing the move to ban the media from the proceedings.