On the surface it looks like the ultimate irony. Documentary filmmaker and journalist John Ziegler was detained by police and threatened with arrest just for showing up at the University of Southern California and doing the thing that journalists are supposed to do: asking questions. Mr. Ziegler was covering an awards ceremony honoring CBS Evening News diva Katie Couric for her 2008 “interview” with Alaska Governor Sarah Palin. As CBSnews.com references the event:
Evening News anchor Katie Couric was honored for her “extraordinary, persistent and detailed multi-part interviews with Republican vice-presidential candidate Sarah Palin” which judges called a “defining moment in the 2008 presidential campaign.”
The award for Special Achievement for National Impact on the 2008 Campaign was bestowed on Ms. Couric at the Annenberg Norman Lear Center at the University of Southern California.
John Ziegler is the executive producer of Media Malpractice. He went to USC “to witness and ask questions about Katie Couric getting the Walter Cronkite journalism award for her interview of Sarah Palin.” He also had copies of his film that he intended to give away. But he was almost immediately handcuffed and roughed up by USC police, who also took away his microphone, while a cameraman recorded it all on video.
You can watch the entire disturbing video at Hotair.com. The irony begins to fade as the chill settles in. In case the USC police, professors, Norman Lear, CBS News or anyone else needs a refresher course on the United States Constitution, let’s start with the 1st Amendment of the Bill of Rights (ratified December 15, 1791):
Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.
Ms. Couric may be a little unclear on the role of a free press in a free society, but Mr. Ziegler understands perfectly.