For all the screaming about President Trump’s rhetorical attacks on the news media, nothing he has done comes close to what is happening now in San Francisco.
Oddly enough, many of the same journalists who have spent the last three years resisting the White House’s supposed war on the newsroom (which, incidentally, has landed them plush media profiles and lucrative book deals and speaking gigs) have not had a lot to say this week about San Francisco Mayor London Breed’s endorsement of her police department’s flagrant violations of freelancer Bryan Carmody’s First Amendment rights. . . .
Carmody claims he was restrained in handcuffs for nearly six hours as the authorities ransacked his home, seizing “laptops, phones and hard drives — including all the images and documents he had archived from his 29-year career as a reporter and cameraman,” the report adds.
Law enforcement officials have neither denied nor contradicted the freelancer’s version of events. The San Francisco Police Department has not yet returned Carmody’s equipment. The raid, which was approved by two trial court judges, also included agents from the FBI.
And all because Carmody refused to give up a confidential source, as is his right. The mayor sees it differently, though, and she is digging in. . . .
In the words of Iranian American freelancer Yashar Ali, who has done a lot of work drawing attention to Carmody’s predicament, the actions taken by San Francisco law enforcement and Breed’s subsequent “endorsement are no different than what you would see in an autocratic regime. Raiding a [journalists’] home and seizing his equipment!!”
Ali also makes a good point about the deafening silence from national reporters who are normally Johnny-on-the-spot with ultra-somber warnings about the perils of Trump hurling insults in their general direction. (I guess those reporters are too busy with the really important stuff, like retweeting their fans and recording audiobooks.)
“Some of you who are ready to march on Washington when a reporter gets a rude reply from the White House are not showing concern for the story in the thread below,” Ali noted. “It’s really pissing me off how many people are silent about it or have shown little concern. You’re hypocrites.”
By keeping quiet on this they’re setting a precedent, no matter what they think.