First published in Blasting News:
Amy Goodman charged with the crime of covering the corporate private security attacking Standing Rock Sioux protesting Dakota Access Pipeline.
Amy Goodman has turned herself in to North Dakota authorities after being charged with criminal trespassing for covering a private militia’s violent crackdown on protesters in North Dakota. Goodman announced on Thursday on her show Democracy Now! “I will go back to North Dakota to fight this charge,” she said. “It is a clear violation of the First Amendment." Goodman went on to say "I was doing my job as a journalist, covering a violent attack on Native American protesters."
On Saturday September 3rd as Goodman was covering the protests against the Dakota Access Pipeline private security guards violently attacked the protesters. Goodman’s live coverage showed guards attacking protesters using dogs and pepper spray and showed a dog with blood on its mouth and nose. Goodman’s footage went viral.
Billionaires’ media ownership
Gone are the days of a vigilant press, here to stay are billionaire owned infotainment style misinformation. Billionaire media moguls like Rupert Murdoch and Michael Bloomberg were once an anomaly but now are the norm. The media has been bought out by billionaires like Amazon founder Jeff Bezos. Since the demise of the Fairness Doctrine under Ronald Reagan, billionaires now own part or all of several of America’s influential national newspapers, including The Washington Post, The Wall Street Journal and the New York Times.
Allegations are now facts
The fourth estate now publishes allegations as fact, a sort of lazy journalism that serves its bought-and-paid-for government officials rather than serving the people. Media seeks to destroy the lives of those who lose favor with the government. The Obama Administration, using the Espionage Act, has indicted or prosecuted six current or former government employees and two government contractors since 2009. This is unprecedented since under all other presidents, only three prosecutions occurred under the Act since 1917.
Serving the war machine
The most egregious example of media malfeasance has to be the coverage of the west’s war of aggression in Syria. As Steve Lendman pointed out in a recent article “Headlines and commentaries were virtually the same, shamelessly blaming Russia for vetoing France’s draft resolution—without explaining its adoption would assure greater war. Nor was Moscow given credit for its responsible cessation of hostilities draft proposal—despicably vetoed by America, Britain and France as expected.”
Amy Goodman herself has reported inaccurately on the events occurring in Syria. A recent guest on DN was Yasser Munif, an assistant professor at Emerson College in Massachusetts. Dave Alpert described the interchange between Munif and Goodman as such: “His comments consistently focused on Russia and the Syrian Army as the sponsors of the “slaughter” of people in Aleppo. This is the kind of biased coverage one might expect from the N.Y. Times, MSNBC, or even Fox “News.” The media coverage of the war in Syria will turn out to be the most shameful episode in the history of American press.
So Amy Goodman is returning to North Dakota to face charges of “criminal trespassing” for her raw coverage of a private company’s militia attacking the Standing Rock Sioux. Goodman will have the best legal representation George Soros can buy, but at some point all journalists must be protected from prosecution. Our democracy cannot survive without it.
By Patricia Baeten