See the UPDATE at the end about the Franklin Center webinar
tonighton protecting the free press!
A bunch of people on the political left have been actively trying to suppress and silence the free speech of the political right. This ranges from the intimidation and attacks on supporters of California’s Prop 8 to lies and harassment spread by Van Jones’ racist Colors of Change slimers and the StopRush vipers. This has been going on for several years. But with the SWATting—essentially attempted murder—of right-wing bloggers, the left’s tactics have spun wildly, dangerously out-of-control.
Internet searches for information on SWATting find a 2008 summary on the FBI’s very own website about the practice. A 2009 story on Yahoo tells about the activities of groups of SWATters as well as a lone “teenage boy engaged in serial swatting over a 5 month period, causing 2 school evacuations with phony reports of bombs and armed gunmen.” Last year, some murderous idiot apparently upset over a video game sent a SWAT team to the home of the Xbox Live moderator’s house (language warning). A few days ago, someone swatted the home of one of the kids that mercilessly harassed the elderly bus monitor.
But since last fall, this homicidal prank has been used against three conservatives…no, make that four. Yesterday, another SWATting occurred. This time it was against Aaron Walker, just hours after he had won a court victory against a left-wing political activist and convicted bomber.
Now in the wide universe of infinite possibilities, it *is* possible that some teenager or random gang SWATted Walker, but it’s also highly unlikely. Because, just as with the other three conservative SWATting victims (Mike Stack, Patrick “Patterico” Frey and Erick Erickson), this SWATting seems meant as retribution for his political speech and to shut him up, if not out of fear then permanently.
I believe the left has become emboldened enough to send SWAT teams to the homes of their political foes because the leaders of the left and the mainstream media have done nothing to express outrage or utter even a simple “tsk, tsk” at such vile, vicious behavior. And if they aren’t going to investigate and cover attempted murder and assault with a deadly SWAT team against conservative bloggers, then these reporters are truly gonna hit the snooze button when the bloggers are merely being run out of their house or having their family creepily cyber-stalked.
Instead, when some crazy essentially non-political person goes berserk and guns down a crowd of people, including a Democrat congresswoman, the media and the Democratic party go wild trying to blame it on Republicans—who had absolutely nothing to do with it. They point frenziedly at Sarah Palin, shrieking that she caused the shooter’s insanity with her campaign material that used a target graphic—a graphic long used by both parties. The media repeat the phony story and the Democrats’ manufactured demand that the Republicans had been take a new tone.
But for nearly 10 months now, someone has been trying to kill outspoken Republicans. Where is the media on this story? More importantly, where is law enforcement?
This isn’t a one-off incident, such as when a “white hispanic” killed a black youth, that has become a major months-long media obsession. This is a repeated targeting of individuals engaged in conservative political speech. And the person or persons committing this crime appears to be getting away with it, especially when the media protects them (intentionally or not) with a cloak of silence.
The left-biased media apparently has no curiosity, let alone concern or outrage, over this First Amendment terrorism. They apparently feel protected in their citadels, secure in the belief that no one would ever send a SWAT team to their home with a prank caller claiming to be them, saying he’d just killed their family. So the #RealReporters have no affinity for the #JustABloggers under the gun, literally.
Is someone going to have to be actually killed before a big, bright spotlight gets shined on this abhorrent practice?
Could the media’s lack of coverage be based on or heavily influenced by their political bias? Many of the mainstream reporters don’t much like what we right-wing bloggers have to say, and they certainly don’t like our criticism of their reporting. They aren’t all that anxious to do us any favors.
If Arianna Huffington or Markos Moulitsas or David Brock were SWATted, they wouldn’t be able to get their satellite trucks to the crime scene fast enough. (I’d name some low-level liberal bloggers here too, except I confess I don’t read them enough to have their names come to mind, but you can bet many of the mainstream news people and their staffers do—and would feel like a friend and colleague had been attacked instead of some random right-wing nutjob *they’ve* never heard of.)
But I do know that no one I know would laugh at or applaud any sort of intimidating or terroristic attacks on our political opponents. I know many of us would, without hesitation, loudly decry such attacks and join the call to investigate and stop it.
It’s time that the media stopped protecting the wacko(s) with their silence. It’s time that they joined forces with everyone who values the freedom to speak your mind without fear of death. It’s time that they did their share to support the First Amendment for speech they may not particularly like.
In the meantime, it’s up to me and you, dear reader, to sound the clarion call for action until they pick up their giant megaphones and turn on their blinding searchlights.
WHAT TO DO:
1) Contact the media and fair-minded lefty bloggers (there’s got to be one or two on this planet) and respectfully ask them to report on this trend. Let them know that you are alarmed by it and afraid someone will get hurt or killed if this swatter(s) is allowed to remain in the shadows of a media blackout.
2) Contact Congress and other governmental authorities. Fortunately, some of our Congressional representatives are as alarmed as the conservative blogosphere is about these attempted murders. Rep. Sandy Adams (R-FL) initiated a letter to Attorney General Eric Holder asking for an investigation of the SWATtings and garnered 87 co-signers. (Breitbart.com got an exclusive statement from her on Walker’s SWATting.) Check the signers of the letter to see if your Congressman is one of them.
- If he is, write him, thank him and alert him to this latest SWATting with links to the story.
- If your Congressman is *not* one of the signers, write him and ask him to please add his name to the bill, noting that this certainly falls under his oath to protect and defend the Constitution.
(As the Spokane Examiner noted earlier this month, Sen. Saxby Chambliss (R-GA) and Rep. Kenny Marchant (R-TX) also put in requests to Holder, which generated a smattering of mainstream media mentions, proving that government action can prod the media into reporting something, no matter how reluctantly.)
Back on National Bloggers Day of Silence, AceOfSpades, Michelle Malkin and Mandy Nagy (among others) posted citizen action information and links. Check their posts out for guidelines of how to contact and where to contact key people with the power to protect the freedom to blog.
The right too often plays nice in these situations—and we lose little bits of our freedom every time. Take a moment today, right now before you forget, to write at least one quick note. We can still be nice, just not silent.
For those click-challenged folks who what their action information with no effort, here direct from Michelle Malkin’s site is a fine list of key persons to contact (in addition to your own Congressman and Senators, of course):
Who to call:
GOP Rep. Frank Wolf (Va.) – Ask him to investigate Kimberlin-related charities.
Phone: (202) 225-5136
Fax: (202) 225-0437
US Department of Justice
Office of the Attorney General Public Comment Line – 202-353-1555
More people to call:
John McCarthy – Please ask for justice in Aaron Walker’s case
State’s Attorney for Montgomery County
50 Maryland Avenue, 5th Floor
Rockville, Maryland 20850
Assistant United States Attorney Robert Dugdale – Please ask for justice in Patrick Frey’s case
The United States Attorney’s Office
Central District of California
312 North Spring Street
Los Angeles, California 90012
There’s no time like now to do it. Be a First Amendment Freedom Fighter. Don’t let the #FreedomToBlog get SWATted away.
Tonight, June 26 from 9:30 to 10:30 (Eastern), the Franklin Center for Government and Public Integrity is hosting a webinar. Jeff Reynolds at FreedomWorks writes:
If you are interested in learning more about protecting these rights and defending conservative bloggers against such risks to themselves and their families, the Franklin Center is conducting a webinar tonight at 9:30pm Eastern time. Aaron Walker will speak about his ordeal, while other speakers will include some of the most prominent conservative bloggers from around the nation.
Tonight at 9:30pm EDT, The Franklin Center joins Lee Stranahan, Mandy Nagy, and last night’s SWATting victim Aaron Walker on a webinar to discuss recent attacks on bloggers and the suppression of free speech.
Information on tonight’s webinar is below. Learn what is at stake and learn how to protect yourself and your act of journalism.
Title: Fighting for a Free Press
Date: Tuesday, June 26, 2012
Time: 9:30pm to 10:30pm EDT
Reserve your space at the following link: https://www2.gotomeeting.com/register/630051426
The webinar had some harrowing tales and excellent information on resources to combat those who wish to stifle blogger speech. The Franklin Center says they will post the audio of the event. Once they do, I’ll link it here.