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Subject: Reporter arrested for reporting the news. In the USA. rss

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 Amy Goodman Is Facing Prison for Reporting on the Dakota Access Pipeline

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 This Monday afternoon, as the sun hits its peak over Mandan, North Dakota, the award-winning journalist, and host of Democracy Now!, Amy Goodman will walk into the Morton County–Mandan Combined Law Enforcement and Corrections Center and turn herself in to the local authorities. Her crime: good, unflinching journalism.

Goodman had the audacity to commit this journalism on September 3, when she was in North Dakota covering what she calls “the standoff at Standing Rock”: the months-long protests by thousands of Native Americans against the Dakota Access Pipeline. The $3.8 billion oil pipeline is slated to carry barrel after barrel of Bakken crude through sacred sites and burial grounds of the Standing Rock Sioux tribe, and tribe members fear it could pollute the Missouri River, the source not only of their water but of millions of others’, should the pipe ever rupture. Their protests, which began in April and ballooned through the summer months, represent the largest mobilization of Native American activists in more than 40 years—and one of the most vital campaigns for environmental justice in perhaps as long.

Goodman’s arrival at the main protest site, the Sacred Stone Spirit Camp, was significant. At the time, not a single one of the major broadcast networks had sent a reporter to cover the Standing Rock mobilization; none had even bothered to mention it on the air. But there was Goodman, standing at the edge of a grassy plain that was in the process of being churned into gullies of dirt, reporting on one of the most significant stories of the day. Clutching a large microphone, she captured the scene as hundreds of protesters tried desperately to stop a crew of bulldozers from tearing up the earth—the earth, they said, that belongs to nobody—only to be confronted by a force of private security contractors wielding attack dogs and pepper spray.

Goodman captured the scene as protesters were confronted by private security contractors wielding attack dogs and pepper spray.

“People have gone through the fence, men, women, and children,” Goodman reported, her voice taut, then rising, louder and more intense. “The bulldozers are still going, and they’re yelling at the men in hard hats. One man in a hard hat threw one of the protesters down…!”

As Goodman narrated, a security contractor, burly in a deep blue shirt, could be seen belly-flopping a man onto the ground. Protesters streamed in to help him, stumbled over mounds of newly churned dirt, faced off with contractors whose faces were hidden behind oversized sunglasses. The scene was full of movement. Overhead, a helicopter hovered, circled, while back on the ground, protesters began to report burning eyes, and dogs—dogs lurching at protesters, dogs straining against their leashes, dogs with mouths open, mouths biting.

“Why are you letting the dog go after the protesters?” Goodman could be heard shouting at a security contractor as a woman screamed in the background. “It’s covered in blood!”

Within hours of the attack, Democracy Now! had turned its footage into a seven-minute video that it released as a web exclusive. Three days later, Goodman followed up with an extensive report—“Dakota Access Pipeline Co. Attacks Native Americans with Dogs and Pepper Spray”—that she broadcast live on her show. The video quickly went viral, pinging across Twitter and Facebook (where it was viewed more than 14 million times) and landing, ultimately, on the same big news stations that, until that moment, hadn’t bothered to cover the protests: CNN, CBS, NBC, MSNBC, NPR.

Goodman’s report created a rare crack in the consensus of silence. And, as Rolling Stone’s Matt Taibbi writes, the outrage it generated may well have influenced the Obama administration’s decision to halt work on the pipeline several days later. This was journalism that mattered.

Yet, on September 8, Goodman received the news that Morton County, North Dakota, had issued a warrant for her arrest. The charge: riot, a misdemeanor punishable by jail time and a fine. (It should be noted that the original charge leveled against Goodman was not riot but criminal trespass, also a misdemeanor. However, just days days before Goodman was set to appear in court, the prosecutor, Ladd Erickson, switched up the charges because, he admitted in an email to Goodman’s lawyer, Tom Dickson, there were “legal issues with proving the notice of trespassing requirements in the statute.”)

When asked to explain the grounds for arresting a working journalist, Erickson told the Grand Forks Herald that he did not, in fact, consider Goodman a journalist. “She’s a protester, basically,” Erickson told the newspaper. “Everything she reported on was from the position of justifying the protest actions.” And in The Bismarck Tribune he later added, “I think she put together a piece to influence the world on her agenda, basically. That’s fine, but it doesn’t immunize her from the laws of her state.”

It’s worth pausing here for a moment to contemplate the full and chilling absurdity of this statement: According to Erickson, a woman who appeared at a protest carrying a microphone emblazoned with the name Democracy Now! and trailing a video crew; who can be heard in the resulting video report identifying herself to a security guard as a reporter; and who then broadcast the video on the daily news program she has hosted for 20 years is not actually a journalist. She is not a journalist, because she harbors a strong perspective, and that perspective clashes with his own. By the same distorted logic, every muckraking news gatherer from Ida Tarbell and Upton Sinclair on through I.F. Stone, and, yes, today’s Matt Taibbi (whose work Erickson apparently admires) was not a journalist but an activist flirting with arrest.

This notion should disturb anyone who labors in the journalism trenches, particularly those who dedicate their days, and often nights, to covering stories that challenge the mighty and prick at the powerful. Engaging in serious journalism—journalism that captures a society’s forbidden, or simply hidden, stories—is hard and scary, and it requires bravery, conviction, and determination, along with an abiding faith in the protective power of the First Amendment. When that faith is compromised, the possibility of serious journalism collapses—a reason, no doubt, the Committee to Protect Journalists came out forcefully on Goodman’s behalf.

“This arrest warrant is a transparent attempt to intimidate reporters from covering protests of significant public interest,” Carlos Lauría, senior program coordinator for the Americas at CPJ, said in a statement. “Authorities in North Dakota should stop embarrassing themselves, drop the charges against Amy Goodman, and ensure that all reporters are free to do their jobs.”

Goodman’s report on the attack on the pipeline protesters created a rare crack in the consensus of silence.

Thus far, the North Dakota authorities remain committed to their own embarrassment; the charges have not been dropped, which is why Goodman is going back to North Dakota to turn herself in—and then fight the charges.

A few weeks back, as I drove with Goodman to and from a memorial service (full disclosure: Goodman is a family friend whom I have known for a long time and once worked for), I overheard an admirer of hers ask what the public could do to support her as she faced arrest. Goodman was quick to respond: keep paying attention to the protesters in North Dakota, keep caring about their fight. She, in other words, was not the story.

Goodman was right, of course. The long struggle of the Standing Rock Sioux, which is a struggle against broken treaties, environmental injustice, and government-sanctioned kleptomania, is older than this country and as essential to its future as it is to its past. Yet, without someone to hold a microphone to the activists’ lips or train a camera on their protests, the story often gets lost. We risk missing the message, uttered by a man with a raw voice and pained face, toward the end of Democracy Now!’s viral video: “No one owns this land. This land belongs to the earth. We are only caretakers. We’re caretakers of the earth.”


And just for forestall the resident neocon "liberals stifling freedom of the press", Ladd Erickson is a repub.
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Walking on eggshells is not my style
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Thanks Obama!
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This is pretty sick. What can be done to help her?
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maxo-texas wrote:
This is pretty sick. What can be done to help her?


Not knowing anything else, probably a terrible abuse of the law to charge her for riot in this case, however I think trespassing may have been appropriate, I've never understood why we feel journalist get to skirt the law.
 
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Frank F
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IF YOU WANT IT
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Please investigate a resource based economy.
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There are no rights in the context of a monetary system. Paper proclamations in the form of constitutions, amendments or compacts do not, can not and will not provide rights or protect you from the system hell bent on destroying all life on earth in pursuit of profit. Please investigate a resource based economy.
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Walking on eggshells is not my style
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LightRider wrote:
There are no rights in the context of a monetary system. Paper proclamations in the form of constitutions, amendments or compacts do not, can not and will not provide or protect you from the system hell bent on destroying all life on earth in pursuit of profit. Please investigate a resource based economy.


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GuidoVanHorn wrote:
maxo-texas wrote:
This is pretty sick. What can be done to help her?


Not knowing anything else, probably a terrible abuse of the law to charge her for riot in this case, however I think trespassing may have been appropriate, I've never understood why we feel journalist get to skirt the law.

Well have you seen countries without a free press?
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David Dearlove
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LightRider wrote:
There are no rights in the context of a monetary system. Paper proclamations in the form of constitutions, amendments or compacts do not, can not and will not provide or protect you from the system hell bent on destroying all life on earth in pursuit of profit. Please investigate a resource based economy.

I suggest you investigate changing the record.
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Koldfoot wrote:
Thanks Obama!


Repurposing a liberal meme about how conservatives blame Obama for things he has nothing to do with in order to blame Obama for the actions of some modern-day Pinkertons and a North Dakota prosecutor.

A+ thumbsup
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toku42 wrote:
Koldfoot wrote:
Thanks Obama!


Repurposing a liberal meme about how conservatives blame Obama for things he has nothing to do with in order to blame Obama for the actions of some modern-day Pinkertons and a North Dakota prosecutor.

A+ thumbsup


Thank you for clarifying.

There was probably a fucktard or two who didn't get the joke.

Thank God you were there as a backstop to save my ass from embarrassment. Good thing you got a sense of humor.
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Me nah play no 'ide and seek
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Koldfoot wrote:
toku42 wrote:
Koldfoot wrote:
Thanks Obama!


Repurposing a liberal meme about how conservatives blame Obama for things he has nothing to do with in order to blame Obama for the actions of some modern-day Pinkertons and a North Dakota prosecutor.

A+ thumbsup


Thank you for clarifying.

There was probably a fucktard or two who didn't get the joke.

Thank God you were there as a backstop to save my ass from embarrassment. Good thing you got a sense of humor.


You'll have to excuse me for not giving you the benefit of the doubt on this matter.
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Walking on eggshells is not my style
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toku42 wrote:
Koldfoot wrote:
toku42 wrote:
Koldfoot wrote:
Thanks Obama!


Repurposing a liberal meme about how conservatives blame Obama for things he has nothing to do with in order to blame Obama for the actions of some modern-day Pinkertons and a North Dakota prosecutor.

A+ thumbsup


Thank you for clarifying.

There was probably a fucktard or two who didn't get the joke.

Thank God you were there as a backstop to save my ass from embarrassment. Good thing you got a sense of humor.


You'll have to excuse me for not giving you the benefit of the doubt on this matter.


No really. Thank you. I care what you think. I appreciate the feedback.
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GuidoVanHorn wrote:
...however I think trespassing may have been appropriate, I've never understood why we feel journalist get to skirt the law.

While Innocent Passage is an Admiralty Law term, I've heard a policeman use it concerning travel on private property.

If you're not doing any harm, you can travel across private land, barring no trespassing signs or fences. Even inimical travelers can cross private land, like door-to-door salesmen or heretical evangelists.

Journalists are considered not merely neutral but beneficial to a free society, indeed that is one of the defining characteristics of a free society as opposed to totalitarianism. In their function of informing the public, we allow journalists to operate closer to "events" than the general public, though these days anyone with a blog can get a press pass.
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Tall_Walt wrote:
GuidoVanHorn wrote:
...however I think trespassing may have been appropriate, I've never understood why we feel journalist get to skirt the law.

While Innocent Passage is an Admiralty Law term, I've heard a policeman use it concerning travel on private property.

If you're not doing any harm, you can travel across private land, barring no trespassing signs or fences. Even inimical travelers can cross private land, like door-to-door salesmen or heretical evangelists.

Journalists are considered not merely neutral but beneficial to a free society, indeed that is one of the defining characteristics of a free society as opposed to totalitarianism. In their function of informing the public, we allow journalists to operate closer to "events" than the general public, though these days anyone with a blog can get a press pass.


Yeah, I'm also amused that anyone would say this after we got a bunch of conservatives in this forum defending the armed occupation of a wildlife refuge as being somehow legal protest.
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LightRider wrote:
There are no rights in the context of a monetary system. Paper proclamations in the form of constitutions, amendments or compacts do not, can not and will not provide rights or protect you from the system hell bent on destroying all life on earth in pursuit of profit. Please investigate a resource based economy.

Not true. For example, if she was a CEO reporting on why the pipeline created jobs, she'd have plenty of rights.
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Me nah play no 'ide and seek
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Koldfoot wrote:
toku42 wrote:
Koldfoot wrote:
toku42 wrote:
Koldfoot wrote:
Thanks Obama!


Repurposing a liberal meme about how conservatives blame Obama for things he has nothing to do with in order to blame Obama for the actions of some modern-day Pinkertons and a North Dakota prosecutor.

A+ thumbsup


Thank you for clarifying.

There was probably a fucktard or two who didn't get the joke.

Thank God you were there as a backstop to save my ass from embarrassment. Good thing you got a sense of humor.


You'll have to excuse me for not giving you the benefit of the doubt on this matter.


No really. Thank you. I care what you think. I appreciate the feedback.


My thanks for your kind consideration.
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Steve K
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They've got a good point really. Remember what the EPA did in Colorado.
 
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Knewt wrote:

They've got a good point really. Remember what the EPA did in Colorado.

You finally getting the sheep herders to stop letting their animals crap in mountain streams? Yeah, what assholes.

This is a local issue, not a federal one. The reporter is being harassed, pure and simple, by local law enforcement for reporting the news. It's not, however, like she faces a fire squad or something. Probably get a fine. The reporter did a good job on the story, btw, although her story lacked context.
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"I don't consider her a journalist" vs. "She isn't a journalist."

So it will hopefully get thrown out of court very quickly, hopefully with a reprimand from the judge against the prosecutor.
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GuidoVanHorn wrote:
maxo-texas wrote:
This is pretty sick. What can be done to help her?


Not knowing anything else, probably a terrible abuse of the law to charge her for riot in this case, however I think trespassing may have been appropriate, I've never understood why we feel journalist get to skirt the law.

They had originally charged her with trespassing, but changed it to participating in a riot as the trespassing charge would be harder to make.

This is a clear 1st Amendment violation.
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Shazam!

Quote:
A North Dakota judge today refused to authorize riot charges against award-winning journalist Amy Goodman for her reporting on an attack against Native American-led anti-pipeline protesters.

“This is a complete vindication of my right as a journalist to cover the attack on the protesters, and of the public’s right to know what is happening with the Dakota Access pipeline,” said Goodman. "We will continue to report on this epic struggle of Native Americans and their non-Native allies taking on the fossil fuel industry and an increasingly militarized police in this time when climate change threatens the planet."

District Judge John Grinsteiner did not find probable cause to justify the charges filed on Friday October 14 by State’s Attorney Ladd R. Erickson. Those charges were presented after Erickson had withdrawn an earlier charge against Goodman of criminal trespass. Goodman had returned to North Dakota to turn herself in to the trespassing charge.

The charges in State of North Dakota v. Amy Goodman stemmed from Democracy Now!’s coverage of protests against the Dakota Access pipeline. On Saturday, September 3, Democracy Now! filmed security guards working for the pipeline company attacking protesters. The report showed guards unleashing dogs and using pepper spray and featured people with bite injuries and a dog with blood dripping from its mouth and nose.

Democracy Now!’s report went viral online, was viewed more than 14 million times on Facebook and was rebroadcast on many outlets, including CBS, NBC, NPR, CNN, MSNBC and the Huffington Post.

On September 8, a criminal complaint and warrant was issued for Goodman’s arrest on the trespassing charge.

"These shifting charges were a transparent attempt by the prosecutor to intimidate Amy Goodman and to silence coverage of the resistance to the pipeline," said Reed Brody, an attorney for Goodman. "Fortunately, these bully tactics didn’t work and freedom of the press has prevailed."

The pipeline project has faced months of resistance from the Standing Rock Sioux tribe and members of over 100 other tribes from across the U.S., Canada and Latin America.

Goodman is the host and executive producer of Democracy Now!, a national, daily, independent, award-winning public television/radio news program that airs on over 1,400 stations worldwide. Goodman has co-authored six New York Times bestsellers and won many of journalism’s highest awards in more than three decades working as a reporter.
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So it got thrown out of court immediately. Well done judge.
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jmilum wrote:
GuidoVanHorn wrote:
maxo-texas wrote:
This is pretty sick. What can be done to help her?


Not knowing anything else, probably a terrible abuse of the law to charge her for riot in this case, however I think trespassing may have been appropriate, I've never understood why we feel journalist get to skirt the law.

They had originally charged her with trespassing, but changed it to participating in a riot as the trespassing charge would be harder to make.

This is a clear 1st Amendment violation.


Right, I think riot charges are laughable as she was operating as a reporter of the events. However I'm not a big fan of illegal activity being swept under the rug as part of journalism, trespasssing is a light offense and the charges were dropped so I'm assuming trespassing wasn't appropriate. That being said, if it was determined she had been trespassing I wouldn't feel bad about the "press being charged with crimes".

Along the lines of theft, hacking or even stalking laws, journalist should be held to the same standard as any citizen. The first amendment extends to talking about and reporting on facts and the like, not a protection for journalist to be held to be a different class of citizenry with special privilege.
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He's looking real sharp in his 1940's fedora. He's got nerves of steel, an iron will, and several other metal-themed attributes. His fur is water tight and he's always up for a fight.
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I believe news events act as a sort of invitation to journalists that has to be revoked rather than the other way around. Most of the time, trespassers don't get arrested unless they've done something else OR they refuse to leave when asked by the property owner anyway.
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Update:

http://www.democracynow.org/2016/10/27/developing_100_milita...
 
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