When authoritarians want to violate press freedoms but don't want to admit they're doing it, they use the same tactic: "oh, the people we're targeting aren't *journalists*." That's what they did to Assange, now to PV, tried it with us in both the Snowden and Brazil reporting:
NEW: Brewing battle over political video-sting artist James O’Keefe and Biden daughter’s diary is testing breadth of administration’s professed committment to free press politi.co/3FbrBX0
The First Amendment's guarantee of a "free press" doesn't apply to a small, cloistered, credentialed, privileged group licensed as "journalists." It protects an activity that *every citizen* has the right to engage in without reprisals or punishments.
3:37 PM · Nov 14, 2021
But if you're one of those authoritarians who justifies the US Government's attack on press activity by claiming the target (Assange, O'Keefe, us in the NSA or Brazil reporting) aren't "real journalists," who determines that? What's your definition for it?
The reason this is an authoritarian mentality -- aside from the fact that it's designed to justify state attacks on people engaged in core press freedoms -- is what they really mean is this: you're not a "real journalist" unless you're credentialed by a large media corporation.
A few months ago, I spoke with @krystalball and @esaagar -- in the context of Democrats cheering the prosecution of Julian Assange -- about why this tactic of trying to decree who is and is not a "real journalist" is both authoritarian and ahistorical:Gyorgy - Australian Citizen for Assange
I should note that this POLITICO article on the Biden DOJ's targeting of Project Veritas and James O'Keefe by the always-fair @joshgerstein does a very good job of refuting the arguments offered to claim that they're not "journalists" so anything goes: politico.com/news/2021/11/13…
FBI raid on Project Veritas founder’s home sparks questions about press freedom
The action against James O’Keefe has prompted concern about the Biden administration’s commitment to the First Amendment.politico.com