When I lived in Dayton several years ago, there was a little town several miles away called Yellow Springs. Yellow Springs is what would’ve been called a hippie town back in the day. Little shops with odd stuff, a lot of incense, you know that kind of thing. I went there one Saturday morning to talk a walk, look around. I had parked on the street, and when I went back to my car to leave, a different car had parked in front of me. That’s when I saw it. The dumbest bumper sticker I ever saw.
It was a simple white bumper sticker with plain black letters that said “One man against violence against women.”
When I first saw it I thought “huh?” I contemplated waiting around to see what the driver looked like and finally decided I didn’t want to know.
I understand bumper stickers that express a point of view. You know, like “Right to choose” or “Right to life” or “Guns kill people” or “You can have my gun when you pry it out of my cold dead fingers.” The idea here being that these examples express opinions….when a relevant opposite opinion exists.
So, a bumper sticker that says “One man against violence against women”, to me, is kind of like having a bumper sticker that says “I’m against murder.” In other words, you’re expressing a sentiment for which there is no reasonable opposite sentiment. What’s the point? Of course I’m against violence against women, is anyone for it? Of course it happens, but would anyone support a sentiment for it? “I’m for violence against women” No, I don’t think so.
I would even understand a bumper sticker supporting an ordinance, law, or legislation for or against something. You know, like “protect women from violence, support prop 18.” But to just say “One man against violence against women” is ignorant to me. It does, however, make me curious about the motivation one would have to place such a sticker on your vehicle. Like, “Ok, I’ve slapped a few women around and I’m trying to remind myself its bad.” But hey, we all the right to free speech, eh?!
So, I was reminded of this story May 17th watching a press conference with Presidential press secretary Jay Carney when he answered a question by saying “This president believes in the first amendment and is a strong defender of the first amendment.” Reference
I’m trying to imagine an answer different than this. You know, like “Well, the president likes the first amendment, but…doesn’t feel it’s a real necessity.” Or any politician saying anything like “well, you know, the first is alright, not really my favorite though.”
Or course I’m being facetious.
In an article titled “Holder meeting: more substance than charm?” (reference) regarding Eric Holders “meeting” with members of the press in an off-the-record meeting:
Holder invited news organizations to meet with him as part of a review of the Justice Department’s guidelines for leak investigations. The offer of meetings became controversial-due to the department’s insistence the sessions be off-the-record– and some organizations, including CNN, Fox News, The New York Times, the Associated Press and Reuters, refused to attend the sessions citing the restriction in the midst of an ongoing news story.
Several news organizations, including the Washington Post, the Wall Street Journal, Politico and ABC News, decided to attend the meetings on Thursday and Friday. (The Justice Department late in the day Thursday authorized invited organizations to bring their attorneys.)
In the article, Reid Weingarten, the high-powered Washington attorney and Eric Holder’s friend, says:
“It is this agonizing dilemma you have in national security cases…you’re obliged to investigate them aggressively,” Weingarten says. But he also tells CNN that “Eric has always been a real First Amendment guy…the question is where do you draw the line.”
A real first amendment guy? What does that mean? Where do you draw the line? Really?
The self-described “transparent administration” is defending their love of the 1st amendment. You know, while they investigate reporters and then have “closed-door, off the record” meetings with them to explain themselves.