A forgotten incident on this date should remind us that corporate censorship of political speech has been around a long time. In 1963, Bob Dylan’s appearance on “The Ed Sullivan Show” before he had become a nationally known artist was clotheslined after CBS censors rejected the song he planned on performing, “Talkin’ John Birch Paranoid Blues,” a satirical number mocking the ultra-conservative, conspiracy theory-minded, Joe McCarthy-esque John Birch Society. Ed had no problem with Bob’s political satire but a Big Eye executive from the Standards and Practices department announced that the network would not allow him to sing the song. Even though the appearance would have meant a huge career boost for Dylan, he politely declined to perform anything else, and the Ed Sullivan Show went on that Sunday without Bob Dylan.
1. GOOD! In 2021, as he was excoriating NY Gov. Andrew Cuomo for his sexual harassment hobby, Rep. Tom Reed, a Republican from western New York, was accused of rubbing a female lobbyist’s back and unhooking her brae without her consent, at an event in Minneapolis in 2017. The lobbyist, Nicolette Davis, told The Washington Post that Reed appeared to be drunk as he pawed her back and leg when the two were seated next to each other during a networking trip. There was quite a bit of evidence corroborating her story, though Reed said it was “inaccurate.” Eventually he admitted that she was telling the truth, and he apologized, saying that the incident occurred when he was “struggling” and “powerless over alcohol.” That, however, didn’t excuse his hypocrisy regarding Cuomo or his initial attempt to lie his way out of trouble. He had already announced that he would not run for re-election, but yesterday he resigned. Good riddance.
2. Today’s desperate Roe v. Wade defense…Now try to stay with me here. Sheila Briggs, an associate professor of religion and gender studies at the University of Southern California, wrote in an op-ed that striking down Roe v. Wade would jeopardize religious liberty. Got that?
She wrote that the end of Roe would be
“…a disaster for the Catholic Church, whose hierarchy in America has made opposition to abortion central to its mission. As the devastating effects on women’s lives become visible after the Supreme Court’s judgment, Catholics are going to feel increasing shame over what their church has done. Precisely because the U.S. protects religious liberty, Catholics who oppose abortion rights do not have to justify their religious beliefs and their religiously motivated conduct to me or, more importantly, to a court of law. By the same token, a religiously motivated decision to not have an abortion should not be imposed on those of us who do not share the religious beliefs,”
Brilliant!—except that the Alito draft is clearly not “religiously motivated” but based on sound legal principles and Constitutional law, and saving the Catholic Church “embarrassment” would not justify allowing the continuing killing of millions of unborn human beings by any moral, ethical or logical standards.
The professor gets a Sidney Wang for that one:
3. Oh, why not?—here’s the latest idiocy from The View’s Joy Behar:
“The whole premise of free speech is the problem—that the solution to bad speech is more speech. In this case, I’m not so sure because, as I’ve said before, I think that the First and the Second Amendments should have some limits. This would be one of them, inciting an insurrection.”
Psst…Joy! Inciting an insurrection is a crime, and is not protected by the First Amendment! Also, check behind you…your brain fell out from the back of your head!
The First Amendment also does not require or excuse ABC continuing to misinform its viewers by giving an ignorant dolt like Joy a nation platform for her delusions.
4. Although the Boulder Daily Camera isn’t much better….The progressive paper’s editors accused SCOTUS of hypocrisy by (maybe) holding that states can set different standards for abortions, while in another case expected to be decided soon, it is expected to strike down New York’s “may issue” firearm carry permit law. In place since 1913, that law says that officials may grant concealed carry permits only if applicants can demonstrate “proper cause” to carry beyond general safety and self-defense,such as working as a security guard or having experienced true death threats. New York is one of only nine of these so-called “may issue” states.
The editors write that “if the court in one breath creates a state-by-state abortion rights free-for-all, and in the next cuffs state gun laws by making the right to carry a concealed weapon uniform, it will beclown itself.” No, the Daily Camera’s editors beclowned themselves, and, just like Behar, made their readers dumber.
Morons. The Second Amendment is a right enumerated and enshrined in the Constitution, and state limits on that right have to pass SCOTUS standards of reasonability. The knocking down of Roe means that the contention that abortion is a constitutionally recognized right is finally rejected. The right to bear arms, however, as well as the prohibition on the federal government infringing on it, was extended to the states by the 14th Amendment, so the Constitution serves as a check on state and local government efforts to weaken the Bill of Rights.
Are the editors unaware of this crucial distinction between abortion and gun ownership, or just deliberately misinforming readers? It’s unethical either way.
Now I see that the Daily Camera’s editorial was really a New York Daily News editorial, despite the Daily Camera slapping its name under the headline, over the headline, after the piece, and at the bottom of the page. [Thanks to Michael Ejercito for pointing this out.] To hell with both papers. American journalism is hopeless.
5. I saved the best news for last! For some reason this amazing story isn’t being reported as prominently as it should be. A pilot flying a small plane from the Bahamas to Florida “told his two passengers he wasn’t feeling well,” then collapsed against the controls, putting the aircraft into a nosedive and sharp turn. One of the passengers, still unidentified, grabbed the controls, pulled the plane out of the nosedive and radioed air traffic control in Fort Pierce in a panic. The man told flight controllers he had no idea how to fly the plane, saying he couldn’t even turn on the navigation screen.
Robert Morgan, an air traffic controller was on his break Tuesday afternoon when he received the emergency call that a passenger with no flight experience was trying to land a Cessna 208 Caravan Morgan had never flown the Cessna 208 Caravan plane before himself, but he mad a printout of the cockpit and controls which he used to guide the gutsy passenger through the steps of flying and landing the plane. One experienced pilot, reacting to the incident right out a dozen movies, said he can’t believe flight controllers were able to talk the passenger into a safe landing. “The level of difficulty that this person had to deal with in terms of having zero flight time to fly and land a single-engine turbine aircraft is absolutely incredible,” he told reporters.
One of the Ethics Alarms ethics principles is that if fate and circumstance put you in the position of being the only one who can fix a problem, you have an obligation to accept the responsibility. That passenger perfectly illustrates it.