Following the disclosures of NSA whistleblower Edward Snowden, Senator Dianne Feinstein (D-CA) went to work to attack the First Amendment just as viciously as she has been attacking the Second and Fourth. Now the legislation she pushed for so vigorously, hypocritically titled the Free Flow of Information Act of 2013 (Here is the Senate and House versions of the bill and Feinstein’s amendment), is said to have the necessary votes to pass in the United States Senate.
Senator Charles Schumer (D-NY) said the bill has 60 votes already behind it at the “Sources and Secrets” conference in New York on Friday.
“It’s very, very likely the Senate will pass a bill this year,” Schumer said. “Just about every Democrat is for the bill. … We have five Republicans on record being for it; three of them are co-sponsors.”
The Associated Press reports:
The bill’s protections would apply to a “covered journalist,” defined as an employee, independent contractor or agent of an entity that disseminates news or information. The individual would have to have been employed for one year within the last 20 or three months within the last five years.
It would apply to student journalists or someone with a considerable amount of freelance work in the last five years. A federal judge also would have the discretion to declare an individual a “covered journalist” who would be granted the privileges of the law.
Clearly this is a huge constitutional problem. The First Amendment explicitly states:
Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.
How many laws can the federal Congress make regarding freedom of the press? None, zero, zip, nada. By even entertaining such legislation, they are clearly on a path to violating not only their oath, but the Constitution of the United States. It’s criminal.
The bill has support of the usual Republican suspects, Sens. Lindsey Graham (R-SC), Roy Blunt (R-MO) and Johnny Isakson (R-GA), Sens. Chuck Grassley (R-IA) and Orrin Hatch (R-UT), who advanced the bill from committee. Senator Schumer says he thinks a few more Republicans will lend their support to the bill as well.
Feinstein and her comrades don’t pay attention to the First Amendment at all. They want to define who is and who is not the press, and violate the law so that they can then manipulate journalists into telling their sources. Rather than deal with the very real violation of the Fourth Amendment, which they ignore when it comes to US citizens and their privacy, but whine and complain when they are under the government microscope, they would rather go after the person that exposed their criminal activity.
Take a look at this brief video, in which you can see the elitist mentality of the ugly face of tyranny we refer to as Senator Dianne Feinstein, in which she claims the First Amendment is a special privilege and not a right. She does this because of her “concerns.” It sounds vaguely familiar to her “concerns” about arms, doesn’t it?
However, what she fails to recognize is that the First Amendment isn’t granting anyone any rights. It’s there to limit Congress. As such, it is explicit in stating that no laws are to be written or passed by Congress regarding freedom of the press. The Constitution doesn’t care what her concerns are, and neither does this author. I care about her and those like her following the law.
Most of us don’t trust the media fully. That is a given and something I often read in comments, articles and hear on the radio by average citizens. Yet, Feinstein and her Marxist friends want to define who is and who is not a real journalist. Because journalists will be defined by Congress in violation of the First Amendment, the legislation will act as a deterrent to many new blogs and independent journalists. It will also open many up to be targeted by an already tyrannical federal government.
In her amendment, Feinstein wanted to change the term “person” to “journalist.” At the time of the writing of the Bill of Rights, the term “press” was used, and Noah Webster clearly defined the press as those that wrote and the means that they put their writings out for public consumption. In his 1828 definition of the term “press,” Webster wrote the following:
The art or business of printing and publishing. A free press is a great blessing to a free people; a licentious press is a curse to society.
What Dianne Feinstein and those like her are supporting is a licentious press, one that can be threatened and controlled by those in power. This is anything but the “free flow of information.” Make no mistake about it, this legislation is criminal and is a direct attack on the Constitution. As such, it is also a direct attack not only on the press, but on the American people.
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