[Most recently by D.A. King: Vox Pop On Amnesty In Georgia]
On Monday, January 12, in an effort to make citizens aware of an anti-amnesty protest rally at the Georgia State Capitol organized by my The American Resistance Foundation, I went to several local newspapers.
At one, The Cherokee Ledger-News ("The Voice of Cherokee County") the editor, James Budd, [email him] told me that my notice could not be run as news, or on the community bulletin board, as I do not live in Cherokee County, and the event was not being held in Cherokee county. (The county line is 3 miles from my home.)
Mr. Budd suggested that I pay to have it run as an advertisement.
So - I tried that. And faxed the below:
IT IS NOT UN-AMERICAN TO ENFORCE THE LAW!
GEORGIA CAPITOL BUILDING!
10:00 AM – 2:00 PM
FEB 5 2004!
No amnesty for illegal aliens! No drivers licenses for illegal aliens!
We protest our law being ignored. We protest the ongoing enabling and assistance of illegal aliens. We protest our unsecured borders!
No other cause or agenda will be welcomed.
ASSISTING AN ILLEGAL ALIEN IS A FEDERAL CRIME!
HOW WILL WE KNOW WHEN WE HAVE ENOUGH ILLEGAL ALIENS IN OUR COUNTRY
AND HOW WILL WE STOP THEM THEN?
Two days later, the advertising manager today sent me an e-mail thanking me for my interest in advertising…and informing me that "after careful consideration" they had "…decided that this type of information is not appropriate for our community newspaper."
In the United States of America, my information is "inappropriate"!
I fully support and have actively defended the Cherokee Ledger-News' right to decide what advertisements go into their paper.
But I have the right to be offended by their decision. I am today more in fear for my nation's future than I was yesterday. Obviously, the politically-correct pressure that has scared these well-intentioned neighbors of mine into this absurd conclusion has been more effective than I realized.
As owner/publisher Dave Caughman [email him] was apparently traveling, I spoke to a very courteous and apologetic office manager, Diane Witt [email her]. Ms. Witt assured me that she was "not trying to offend" me. She "agreed that our laws should be tightened"…but because the community that they served contained "a lot of Hispanics," they were unwilling to accept my ad business, as the flyer "might offend someone."
My ad contains no reference to "Hispanics"—only the law, and those who violate it.
She went on to explain that her paper had many advertisers who may be offended by their running this 2 x 4 inch notice.
These potentially-offended groups, according to Ms. Witt, included Habitat for Humanity.
I have in hand a week-old edition of the Cherokee Ledger-News; I do not see an advertisement from Habitat for Humanity. I do see a disclaimer that reads: The views on the Editorial and Opinions pages are not necessarily the views of THE CHEROKEE LEDGER-NEWS.
Apparently enforcing the law is too delicate a subject to be given this same consideration.
Of course, the Ledger-News is not afraid of controversy! In a four-inch wide, page-high slot above this notice was a section headed "Cherokee Voice." In it the responses of six local residents are presented answering a question asking if they favor a pending local city ordinance that would ban indoor smoking. (It is unanimous; all six are in favor.)
I can only guess at the turmoil that must have been created for the staff in finding the courage to present this potentially offensive question.
In our 5-minute conversation, I learned that it is Ms. Witt's position that this effort to avoid offending "Hispanics and groups that are trying to help them" only means that she and the staff were "not trying to pass judgment…" When I observed that it is my opinion that she will need to "pick a side soon" between giving offense to criminals and having a nation to pass on to her children that bears at least some resemblance to the one we grew up in, she could only reply that she was "sorry that I feel that way."
I am not sorry that I feel that way. And I am offended Ms. Witt.
When informed that I was taking notes and was going to write an account of the entire episode, Ms. Witt replied that this represented a "threat" and that I "should be darn careful what I say."
I have been darn careful, Ms. Witt.
More careful, concerned, and thoughtful in what I say than you and your staff have been in considering the consequence of trading the rule of law for some self-conferred sense of goodness and political correctness.
More darn careful than to abandon my country and my principles to lawless invaders, and to those who enable them—even if they are readers or advertisers or traitors to the freedom of the press.