Thursday, April 26, 2007

The big time

The Silver & Gold Record notes the nine professors' attack on the Churchill report--and mentions an incident a couple of weeks ago:

In related news, two "Bloggers" who author anti-Churchill Web sites say they were ejected from an April 12 speech by Cheyfitz because they were recording the event. According to Lt. Brad Wiesley of the UCB police, officers were called to the public meeting in the Duane Physics Building after event organizers repeatedly asked the two individuals to stop recording. Organizer Tom Mayer of sociology told S&GR that at Cheyfitz's request, those allowed to record the event were only credentialed media and those who had made arrangements beforehand. Wiesley said officers asked the two individuals to step out into the hallway to discuss the matter, and the two volunteered to leave.

But John Martin, who writes thedrunkablog., and an individual who writes slapstickpolitics. and identified himself only as "El Presidente" and a 2001 UCB alum, say the regulations on recording were never announced and that the two did not leave the event voluntarily. Martin told S&GR that his reported comment about "fascists" was directed at event organizers, not the officers, and that another videographer was ejected from a recent "teach-in" organized by Churchill backers.

Sheet. Almost got it right, except that I didn't say the videographer at the teach-in, Peter Fotopoulos, was "ejected"--mainly because he wasn't. Ben Whitmer just had the cops make him shut down his camera. The S & G R reporter said he'd clarify this in next week's issue. Oh, and my "fascists" comment was also directed at the audience, not just the organizers (see you all Saturday!).

In any case, a small light is shone on a dethspicable act of censorship. Wonder if the National! Emergency! Forum! organizers will be dumb enough to try the same stunt this weekend? According to CU regs (para. V), since it's a public meeting and they didn't announce any conditions on recording "at the time of scheduling" (just as with the "colloquium"), they can't prohibit anyone from doing so. We'll see.

Meanwhile over at the Try-Works, Churchill doppelganger "Charley Arthur" replies to my comment, "Public meeting, no flyer, and no announced prohibition against recording. Good deal," with this:
Ain’t no announced prohibition against grabbing you by the wiggly part of that scrawny little chicken neck of yours and leadin’ you out of the room either, is there?
Um, yes, Charley, I'm afraid there is. Charley also says he's a regular on Ward Churchill's "security detail," which would explain a lot.

Update: "'Bloggers,'" in quotes, and capitalized. (Sub-up: but he did say we "authored" the things, so I guess we'll call it even. Look ma, I'm a author!)

Update II: Somehow I have trouble believing Cheyfitz himself requested that recording be prohibited at the colloquium. Why would he? He'd been yacking all over the place before the event. What made this occasion different? Could Tom Mayer have been forced into a little ad lib lying? A professor? Perish the thought.

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