Sunday, July 10, 2005

A sticky situation for Journalists - what about integrity?

open message to

I've lost so much respect for Free Press. I've just read your appeal for a federal sheild law for reporters who protect whistleblowers. That sounds fine but you're using Miller and Cooper as examples for why we need this. I find that just simply OUTRAGEOUS and DISGRACEFUL! Shame on you. Don't you understand that these reporters are not protecting whistleblowers? This is such a complicated issue with these two and you're glossing it over implying that they're trying to protect whistleblowers - who are you? Some Karl Rove operative? This is disgusting and I sincerely hope you reframe your appeal. Have you seriously looked into what Miller and Cooper did and their relationship to the administration? I doubt if you'd be portraying them as some kind of martyr if you knew. I'm sorry for the tirade but this is so low and deceitful. Perhaps you can clarify why Miller and Cooper are deserving of federal protection. I'd love to hear your story. If you'd like to hear another side to the story please visit the dailykos.
I look forward to your reply.

On Thursday JULY 14 Responds:

Free Press' ( position opposing the jailing of journalists and supporting a national shield law was taken after significant debate and consideration. As a result of the overzealous federal prosecutor in the Plame case, no reporter will be able to promise confidentiality to a source. The national shield law we are supporting would safeguard reporters' ability to protect their sources unless there was no other way to obtain information for a criminal investigation. Such protections already exist in over 35 states --and they should be extended to the federal courts. But more important than the particulars of one case is the larger principle at stake: without the ability to shield the identity of a whistleblower or source, investigative journalism would be impossible. No reporter who wants to do real journalism can function if their sources can't trust them. Nobody from inside the government -- regardless of their political affiliation -- is going to step forward if they can't be protected. It is doubful that another Deep Throat would step forward today without a shield. If a crime was committed in the Plame case, the prosecution should be pursuing those culpable -- not the journalists who they tried to manipulate. The fact that Karl Rove and Judith Miller are involved in the Plame case is obscuring the big picture. Reporters and whistleblowers must be protected or journalism will get even worse and those in power will be even harder to hold accountable. A reporters' promise of confidentiality is a cornerstone of a free press.


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