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Free Speech: Hits and Misses

By Harmony Grant
9 July 2007

Bad news first. The Supreme Court ruled against freedom in the case commonly known as “Bong Hits 4 Jesus.” They said a public school could punish a student for displaying those four words on a large banner on public property during a school event, because the sign might be seen as promoting drug use. Dissenting Justice John Paul Stevens stood up for the First Amendment and accused the majority of discriminating against speech based on the viewpoint it expresses, which is forbidden by our Constitution.
Conservatives and Christians had joined with leftists to defend the student’s right to hold that banner; they knew a ruling against this student could be used to censor other students’ religious and political expression. Unfortunately, they lost. It was one defeat in the ongoing war for freedom of speech, the lifeblood of our unique nation.
We can pray this life blood will look a little more precious to the Supreme Court when and if they hear another recent case, an appeal of a ruling by the liberal 9 th Circuit Court of Appeals.
In this case, the Circuit Court also ruled against free speech, upholding the action of Oakland, CA to forbid two Christian women from circulating a flyer supporting the “natural family.” The women’s government workplace was simultaneously allowing gay activists to use workplace facilities to advocate homosexuality!
The incident occurred in 2002 when two black Christian women who worked for the Oakland government sought permission to circulate an email which described the “natural family” as the foundation of society. Other workers had used workplace facilities to promote the gay pride parade, but the women were forbidden from circulating the email, and their printed flyers were removed from the municipal bulletin board as "homophobic," "disruptive," and intended to "create a hostile environment.”
The 9th Circuit Court’s decision to uphold this blatant discrimination against pro-family speech is a devastating judgment. In 1897, an American publisher named DeRobigne Bennett spent 11 months in jail for his anti-marriage pamphlet which was ruled to be “obscene.” Today, you are more likely to land in jail for supporting traditional marriage! Calling a traditional nuclear family “natural” can now be called “hate speech.”
Defenders of a federal hate crimes law—which Congress is currently trying to pass—say it won’t be used to punish religious or political speech. But do we need any further proof than Oakland ? The US government doesn’t even have a federal hate law yet and legislative radicals are already punishing the expression of traditional morality. Yes it can happen here.

Breaking Even?

But liberty lovers won some battles too. The House has overwhelmingly voted to ban revival of the Fairness Doctrine which would have shattered talk radio by requiring “equal viewpoint expression.” Senators Dianne Feinstein and John Kerry had both recently expressed hope of resuscitating this bad legislation and forcing right-leaning radio hosts to air their opponents’ viewpoints. The House squashed their dictatorial plan by a vote of 309-115.
That’s good news for free speech, but it will mean a lot more if talk radio audiences demand broadcasts that actually use that freedom to speak truth. At present, mainstream AM radio (like FOX and other non-liberal venues) is largely pro-Israel. This isn’t accidental and it isn’t the result of critical thinking; it results from focused efforts by Zionist opinion-makers.
The Jewish Week recently reported on the careful efforts of American Zionists to keep talk radio pro-Israel. The article notes that the top five hosts on talk radio are all right-wing Israel-firsters: Rush Limbaugh, Sean Hannity, Michael Savage, Dr. Laura Schlesinger and Laura Ingraham. Two of the five are themselves Jewish.
“If some are perplexed about the Zionist-tilt on talk radio in defiance of what is found elsewhere in the media, perhaps some credit belongs to the persistence of Harrison, Hoenlein and the ongoing educational efforts of their America’s Voices for Israel,” reports Jewish Week.
Who are these men we should thank for the Zionist bias on talk radio? The article explains that heavy influence comes from Michael Harrison, who publishes the leading industry magazine for talk radio (Talkers) and America’s Voices for Israel (AVI). AVI is led by Malcolm Hoenlein, executive vice chair of the one of the most powerful leadership bodies of organized Jewry, the Conference of Presidents of Major American Jewish Organizations. The groups led by the two men “have been shepherding more than 50 talk show hosts to Israel” for the past five years, teaching them to see the Mideast through Zionist eyes.
Is there any hope that mainstream talk radio can change? That depends on you! Listeners must demand truth on the subjects of Israel and Jewish anti-Christian activism. Jewish activists like Feinstein, thank God, have been prevented for now from determining what can be said on talk radio. But Jewish big money will do it, unless audiences stop listening and thus deprive biased broadcasters of advertising revenue. Instead, they should listen via internet and short wave to alternative talk radio, especially Genesis and Republic Broadcasting Networks.

We’ve Still Got the Web!

The internet still remains the most heartening source of free thought. In the last year a string of shockingly mainstream voices and articles exposed the power of the Israel lobby and criticized fascist policies in Israel. Think Jimmy Carter, the Economist, Walt and Mearsheimer, and more. This may largely be thanks to the internet, where salty truthtelling provides unprecedented competition to TV and print media. Not only did the internet become a forum for unspoken truths, but its explosive and free-wheeling discourse probably encouraged public opinion-makers about the limits they could push even in traditional media.
In fact, criticism of Israel on the internet is so powerful that Jewish activists are seeking to curtail even its small and surprising places. The World Union of Jewish Students (WUJS) launched a campaign last August to try to control the content of “talkback” forums! The Jerusalem Post reported that WUJS sees these forums, where readers comment on news articles or commentary, as a “neglected battlefield” which “really [does] have the ability to change opinions.” WUSJ activist Sarit Felder said some 25,000 people were involved in the first month of the project, which uses Israeli-made technology to spot and forward “problematic” articles so Jewish activists can add good spin to the talkback forum.
But this campaign was launched almost a year ago and from my regular and thorough sessions online, I can report that talkbacks do not seem more Israel-appeasing! Instead they reflect so many readers’ outrage at Zionist foreign policy and Israeli injustice.
In this month of our nation’s independence, we should thank God for the continued liberty of talk radio and the internet! There is every reason to take heart. Who foresaw the revolution of the web, this amazing, global frontier of free speech?
We don’t know what else God might provide if we encourage His mercy with our own concerned action and prayer. In our nation, the scene may be dark but the end of the play hasn’t yet been read.


Harmony Grant writes and edits for the National Prayer Network, a Christian/conservative watch dog organization.
Let the Anti-Defamation League of B'nai B'rith teach you how they have saddled 45 states with hate laws capable of persecuting Christians:
Learn how ADL took away free speech in Canada and wants to steal it now in the U.S. Congress. Watch Rev. Ted Pike's Hate Laws: Making Criminals of Christians at Purchase this gripping documentary to show at church. Order online at for $24.90, DVD or VHS, by calling 503-853-3688, or at the address below.

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