Shootin' the Breeze

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Al-Jazeera Ain’t My Choice for a News Source

America values freedom of speech and freedom of the press.  So do I.

However, just because we allow freedom of speech and freedom of the press does not mean we have to agree with all the speakers and writers.  The opportunity to disagree is exactly why the First Amendment exists.  In the marketplace of ideas, we are competing and we can choose whose words we reject.  We can choose to not buy a newspaper or book.  We can choose to not subscribe to a TV package that contains programming objectionable to us.

So, Al-Jazeera, don’t get your panties in a bunch if I do not welcome y’all to America.  Al-Jazeera is a company that ain’t from around here.  It is from Qatar, which is in the Mid-East, and I don’t mean middle America.  I mean it is a voice of the Arab world.  I suspect it is the voice of Al Qaeda or sympathetic to that terrorist organization.  I have concrete reasons to say this based on past performance of Al-Jazeera.

When American soldiers were first sent to Iraq, Al-jazeera, in violation of the Geneva Convention, published photos of dead American soldiers on its internet site.  A young man in California, which is in America, was upset and used his knowledge of how internet sites are controlled to take down the Al-Jazeera site and redirect viewers to a site that he created which had an American flag and the words “Let Freedom Ring.”

For his patriotic act of cyber-war, he was prosecuted in our American federal court.  By the way, when he saw the uproar about the hijacked Al-Jazeera site, he immediately turned himself in to the FBI.  He pled guilty to something about engaging in fraud by pretending to be an Al-Jazeera employee in order to get its password.  He was eventually sentenced to probation with 1,000 hours of community service.

Maybe justice was done.  Maybe not.  Maybe they should have given him a medal.

I just know that I am opposed to Al-Jazeera being on my TV.  I am not interested in the Arab “take” on news.  I hope their viewership is so low that they drop their channel due to people boycotting the station.  Martin Luther King organized the bus boycott.  There is a Constitutional difference between censoring free speech and simply not listening to it.

Let Freedom Ring!


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5 thoughts on “Al-Jazeera Ain’t My Choice for a News Source

  1. Yes, I have seen that ‘ad’ on our TV network provider (Dish) and was quite surprised. I knew it was an Arab news source.

  2. Your feelings are very well understood, sir. The coverage back then was horrific and uncalled for. I did read a number of stories on their site but found the “tone” of their news reporting to be much more objective than that of CNN. Nevertheless, I totally understand your well founded beliefs. (I do see a parallel, though, with what the Japanese news reported during WWII.). 🙂

    • Tell me about the Japanese news. I don’t understand so can only guess. Are you referring to news reported to the Japanese people in Japan on Japanese radio or to news in America about the war in the Pacific?

      • Yes, WWII. Early in THEIR war (please recall that while “the war” started for us in 1941, Japan was at war with Korea, Manchuria, etc., since the early 30’s), Japanese printed media would show soldiers holding the heads of their victims. During their initial conquest of the Philippines (assisted by MacArthur’s lackadaisical reaction to Pearl Harbor), quite gruesome photos of dead American and British soldiers were shown. Yet, Japan is one of our greatest allies now. Their news is broadcast here as well but it is somewhat government controlled. Sound familiar? Lol. :-). But I respect totally your beliefs founded on morals, ethics and patriotism. In fact, just yesterday, a very lovely and sweet Jordanian lady friendof mine wrote, “Al Jazeera lies.” 🙂

  3. Koji, I sincerely appreciate your comments. You have a better knowledge of WWII history than do I. Your intelligent contributions are welcome on my comment section. Thanks.

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