Everybody’s favorite radical anto-gun Congressman, Eric “Nuke’em” Swalwell, sent out this Tweet about his Journalism Protection Act.
According to Swalwell’s official Congressional website:
[Swalwell] introduced the Journalist Protection Act to make a federal crime of certain attacks on those reporting the news.
During his campaign and since taking office, President Trump has created a climate of extreme hostility to the press by describing mainstream media outlets as “a stain on America,” “trying to take away our history and our heritage,” and “the enemy of the American People.” He tweeted a GIF video of himself body-slamming a person with the CNN logo superimposed on that person’s face, and retweeted a cartoon of a “Trump Train” running over a person with a CNN logo as its head.
Such antagonistic communications help encourage others to think, regardless of their views, that violence against people engaged in journalism is more acceptable. In April, the international organization Reporters Without Borders lowered the United States’ ranking in its annual World Press Freedom Index, citing President Trump’s rhetoric.
“President Donald Trump’s campaign and administration have created a toxic atmosphere,” Swalwell said. “It’s not just about labelling reports of his constant falsehoods as #FakeNews – it’s his casting of media personalities and outlets as anti-American targets, and encouraging people to engage in violence.”
Last March, OC Weekly journalists said they were assaulted by demonstrators at a Make America Great Again rally in Huntington Beach, Calif. In August, a reporter was punched in the face for filming anti-racism counter-protestors in Charlottesville, Va. And in September, a Joplin, Mo. blogger was similarly attacked for his providing information about the community.
“Not all attacks on journalists this year have been committed by Trump supporters, but the fact remains that rhetoric emanating from the world’s most powerful office is stoking an environment in which these attacks proliferate,” Swalwell said. “We must send a loud, clear message that such violence won’t be tolerated.”
The Journalist Protection Act makes it a federal crime to intentionally cause bodily injury to a journalist affecting interstate or foreign commerce in the course of reporting or in a manner designed to intimidate him or her from newsgathering for a media organization. It represents a clear statement that assaults against people engaged in reporting is unacceptable, and helps ensure law enforcement is able to punish those who interfere with newsgathering.
The bill is supported by the Communications Workers of America (CWA) and by News Media for Open Government, a broad coalition of news media and journalism organizations working to ensure that laws, policies and practices preserve and protect freedom of the press, open government and the free flow of information in our democratic society.
“This is a dangerous time to be a journalist,” said Bernie Lunzer, president of The NewsGuild, a division of the CWA. “At least 44 reporters were physically attacked in the U.S. last year and angry rhetoric that demonizes reporters persists. The threatening atmosphere is palpable. The Journalist Protection Act deserves the support of everyone who believes our democracy depends on a free and vibrant press.”
I fully support the First Amendment and the right to a free press, but that reads as some pretty partisan horseshit.
What is worse, and what drew my attention was the logo Swalwell chose to put on his announcement.
That is the “raised fist of solidarity” and was adopted by unions and Leftist agitators in the western world.
It was used in recruiting posters for the Dutch SDAP (Social Democratic Workers’ Party).
It was also known as the “anti-fascist salute” used by the Soviet backed Communist Republicans or Rojas, in the Spanish Civil War.
In 1968, the raised fist in a black glove was thrown by Tommie Smith at the Gold Medal ceremony for the Olympic 200 Meter race.
From this point on, the black raised fist has been heavily associated with the Black Power movement and became a widely recognized symbol of the Black Panthers.
The raised fist was thrown often by Black Lives Matter at various protests.
As a socialist symbol, it was thrown often by protesters with the Occupy Movement.
And by Bernie Sanders.
Who was just channeling his inner Hugo Chavez.
The raised fist emoji has become the emoji of the #Resistance on Twitter.
The raised fist of solidarity, anti-fascist salute, or black power fist, is decidedly a radical if not revolutionary Leftist symbol. It is one used by communists, socialists, Leftist racial separatist groups, and tyrants.
Having the raised fist of solidarity holding a pencil as a symbol of journalism is ENTIRELY proves Trump’s point, because it doesn’t symbolize impartial journalism, but radical Left wing activist journalism.
Trump may have popularized the term “fake news” but no rational person could say it is a new phenomenon. Less we forget how the New York Times and Water Duranty won a Pulitzer for covering up the Soviet engineered famine in the Ukraine.
If your goal is to protect the First Amendment rights of Journalists – a worthy cause – don’t do it by tying your bill, and journalism in general, to revolutionary socialism.
That’s some pretty shitty optics.