Sunday, January 11, 2015

Today in freedom of expression

Did the morning's No. 3 story on the Fair 'n' Balanced homepage have a bit of a familiar look?

A Michigan union camp where 1960s radical students signed their manifesto will be recognized as an official historical site, in a development critics say lends unwarranted legitimacy to a movement that was linked to violence and anti-Americanism.

It should have; though dated January 11, it was floating around the bottom of the page Friday before disappearing and rising again on Sunday. (Handy tip: Look for the point where the reader comments go from "12 hours ago" to "3 days ago.") Anyway:

The "Port Huron Statement," a 25,700-word document written by one-time University of Michigan student and future California lawmaker Tom Hayden, was signed at a United Auto Workers camp near Port Huron in 1962. But even though the mission statement for the left-wing group Students for a Democratic Society blasted the U.S. and helped spawn a sometimes violent student movement, state officials say it is part of history.  

Sounds like those officials need to be taught a lesson, huh?

... "It is bewildering that the state of Michigan would waste taxpayer dollars celebrating a failed, totalitarian-oriented ideology,” Ashley Pratte, spokeswoman for Young America’s Foundation, a conservative group of students and young professionals that drafted its own statement in 1960 in Sharon, Conn., told “The Students for a Democratic Society (SDS) was a radical group that was eager to salute their Eastern bloc comrades as no threat to freedom. [But] what we know now reinforces how radical and ill-informed SDS was. Not to mention that their domestic policy gave us a blueprint that led to modern day Detroit."

Because imagine celebrating a failed, totalitarian-oriented ideology in public:

A giant Confederate battle flag may soon be flying near a Tampa highway intersection.

Even if you can't tell it from the Stars and Bars:

Virginia Flaggers, a group promoting public display of the battle flag, has leased private land along Interstate 95 in Chesterfield County, just south of Richmond, and said it would raise the 12-foot by 15-foot "Stars and Bars" flag up a 50-foot flagpole at the site on Sept. 28 and leave it up indefinitely.

Let alone by state order:

Mississippi Gov. Haley Barbour on Sunday defended fellow Gov. Bob McDonnell for his decision to declare April "Confederate History Month" in Virginia without initially acknowledging the legacy of slavery, saying the controversy "doesn't amount to diddly."

A little normal confusion of "celebrating" with "recognizing" aside, your friends at Fox would no doubt like you to recall them as heroic advocates of free thinking and free speaking over the past week. Just in case you needed a reminder: No, not really. Not at all, actually.



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