On The Pen, The Sword and The NYT
There's been another NYT scandal. The right wing and its neo-con brethren (you all can look up instapundit. I'm not hotlinking it because I don't want to) are upset because the Paper of Record printed something that could be a breach of National Security. The left wing (large swathes of it anyway) are very interested in seeing Freedom of the Press held sacrosanct. Both sides are right. Yes, freedom of the press is as sacred as my freedom to own any gun I want to.
Wait a minute...what? Yeah, you heard me right. I have a freedom to bear arms, but along the last 200 years certain parties have decided that since there were no AK-47s in the Olden Days, then my freedom to own an assault rifle isn't really existant. So let's flipsy the doodle and look at this: There were no Coast to Coast national papers in the Olden Days. Surely when the Founding Fathers and Xenu decided upon a free press they didn't mean 24 hour national media that would reach everyone in the country? They meant to give their citizens power--but not that much power. Right? Right? Surely some regulation would be okay for the Press! Because we, as right-thinking individuals must realise that they didn't mean "freedom of the press" the way we would assume they meant it. Right?
And then on with the gun analogy. My father had several guns from before I was born. I didn't even know that until I was about 12. I don't even know if my siblings know that he had rifles in the the closet. But he did. You see, it's possible to have a gun and decide to not use it because someone could get hurt if it's mishandled. Having the gun and choosing not to use the gun doesn't make you any less free. It makes you responsible.
Having a globally-read newspaper and choosing not to tell a story that could potentially harm millions of people doesn't make the press any less free. It makes the press responsible.