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article imageOp-Ed: Silence over Shuler's arrest, beating, heaps shame on media

By William M. Schmalfeldt     Oct 27, 2013 in Politics
Columbiana - The so-called "liberal" media should hang its head in shame over its silence in response to the beating, arrest, and jailing without bond of liberal blogger Roger Shuler.
Since Shuler was arrested in front of his house, beaten black and blue by the police, thrown into a Shelby County, Alabama, squad car and jailed without bond on two counts of contempt of court, not only have the major media outlets been silent, outside of a few minor league blogs, the big left wing blogs like Think Progress, Talking Points Memo -- personally contacted by this writer -- have yet to write a word about the case.
Imagine the outrage if Erick Erickson of RedState were accosted by police, thrown against his garage door, had his arm twisted behind his back being told by the police they were going to "break" it. Imagine the weeping and wailing if Matt Drudge displayed a mugshot showing the entire left side of his face swollen and bruised, his left eye swollen nearly shut.
Right wing bloggers don't even need to have something actually happen to them to get the right wing blogosphere up in arms.
One writer for the extremist right wing blog Breitbart.com claimed a phony rape threat from a man with a progressive neurological disorder who lived 1,400 miles away from him. He sent the police to the man's house, then cried to whoever would listen that he needed money, lots of money, so he could relocate his family. Right wing bloggers from coast to coast came to his aid, exhorting their readers to raise money for this man, who continued with his claim of death and rape threats from a man who would have to ask his wife to drive him the 1,400 miles to commit this imaginary crime the right wing blogger created in his mind. Michelle Malkin even ordered her followers to give generously to the man. Heaven knows how much money he raised. But even though this alleged threat happened in September 2012, the man still lives at the same address. He has not refunded a nickel to anyone who donated to "save him and his family" from this incredible (in the literal sense of the word) fabricated threat.
Roger Shuler, creator of the "Legal Schnauzer" blog, is a man who has been taking on the Alabama right wing political machine, pretty much on his own, for years. He is beloved in the South where liberals are generally seen as "the enemy" by the people in power. On the evening of Oct. 23, police showed up at his house with an arrest warrant. He had violated a judge's order. The judge said Shuler was no longer allowed to write about a top level Republican official in the state, the son of a two-term GOP governor with congressional aspirations, and his alleged affair with a married woman, including allegations that the GOP top operative paid the woman hush money and financed an abortion. He was also ordered by this judge to stop writing about a female GOP operative, whom Shuler alleges had an an affair with an elected Alabama GOP official.
Shuler, being a citizen of the United States of America, ignored the contempt citation. The Constitution allows one to write about public figures, to make allegations if they can be substantiated. If the allegations turn out to be libelous, that's a civil matter. But when did Alabama become a third world country under its own Bill of Wrongs that would deny a reporter, a respected legal authority, a well-known blogger, his First Amendment guaranteed rights?
Since his arrest on Oct. 23, his wife remains barricaded in her house. There is a warrant for her arrest as well, since she assisted Roger in the research and writing of his blog. If she steps outside, she will also be arrested and it seems likely that the Shelby County authorities will be as gentle with her as they were with her husband.
Most folks in the liberal blogosphere weren't even aware of the arrest until late Thursday when a local radio talk show host did a telephone interview with Shuler's wife, Carol. Many of those who heard this ghastly news made every effort to contact everyone they knew in the so-called "liberal" media to raise the alarm about a man, taken from the driveway of his house, beaten, bruised, arrested on two charges of contempt of court and one count of resisting arrest (and the mug shot makes it seem as if Shuler resisted the police with the left side of his head). Where is the left wing media outrage? Where is even a whiff of indignant editorializing from this left wing media cabal that the conservatives rail against, weep about and raise money over?
Do a "Google News" search for Roger Shuler. The highest-level news source we can find having written about the case is "Op-Ed News." Where is Talking Points Memo? Where is Think Progress? Where is Crooks and Liars? Where is Daily Kos? Where is The Raw Story? Why is Roger Shuler, even at this hour, languishing in a Shelby County, Alabama, jail for the crime of disobeying an illegal, unconstitutional order from a retired judge, called back to service by the GOP operative to handle his case?
In this climate where a right wing blogger can lie about a threat that never existed and raise thousands of dollars to "move" -- and then not even change apartments -- the left wing media establishment (such as it is) should be shamefaced over their lack of concern about an older man who is nursing his bruises behind bars while his wife remains barricaded in her house.
Evil can only exist when good people do nothing. At the moment, the so-called "liberal media" is complicit in the unconstitutional manhandling of a childless, older couple whose only crime was reporting the truth as they saw it.
We expect corrupt people to act like corrupt people. We are deeply disappointed and disillusioned when the so-called guardians of the public good on the left turn a blind eye to the plight of one of the finest foot soldiers in this ongoing war against oppression.
Shame.
This opinion article was written by an independent writer. The opinions and views expressed herein are those of the author and are not necessarily intended to reflect those of DigitalJournal.com
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