So, Set, what do you personally think of freedom of the press vs protection of the child in this case, if you do not mind answering?
I am uncertain how the banning of such publication would have an effect on freedom of the press - I mean, it IS curtailing a freedom - but are there not a number of other things curtailed - like printing known lies - and such? Is the argument a slippery slope one? Certainly, your press is freer than ours - we have stricter libel laws, for instance - the press complain that this curtails investigative reporting - and it may - I do not really know for sure.
IMO it is a slippery slope argument. We've been told over and over again that a totally free and open press is the way to thwart over-bearing government. The press is our watchdog etc...
I'm sure you've seen plenty of posts right here on A2K about the US media one way or another when people don't like what is being said (or isn't being said..). I'd guess it wouldn't be a leap to assume that most people in the US would be up in arms if press limitations were imposed.
Libel law is slightly different since that's mostly a civil issue not a criminal one. Papers are free to libel anyone they want to. They'll have to pay those people off though when they sue the papers in the courts and it's proven they lied.
I don't mind answering. I have never known of a state which does not shield a minor from publicity in any case in which the minor is not an alleged perpetrator being tried as an adult. I don't say that there are no states in which this can happen, just that i don't know of any. This case is special, in that the parents pushed for this arrest, and i believe they are venally interested in what they can get out of it. In general, our laws are predicated upon the assumption that they bind government, and bind the people only in the realm of criminal law and civil liabilities. The ninth amendment reads:
The enumeration in the Constitution, of certain rights, shall not be construed to deny or disparage others retained by the people.
and the tenth amendment reads:
The powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the States, are reserved to the States respectively, or to the people.
Additionally, Article IV, section 1, reads:
Full Faith and Credit shall be given in each State to the public Acts, Records, and judicial Proceedings of every other State. And the Congress may by general Laws prescribe the Manner in which such Acts, Records and Proceedings shall be proved, and the Effect thereof.
and section 2 reads:
The Citizens of each State shall be entitled to all Privileges and Immunities of Citizens in the several States.
All which means, to me at least, that in any case in which a court seals the record of a proceeding, or puts a gag order on officers of a court, and the press, that order must be respected in all of the states.
Despite many flaws (minor ones, in my estimation) inherent is having fifty sets of laws to cover such contingencies, i think that the legislatures and courts of the several states act in good faith to protect the civil liberties of the citizen. I also feel that so long as there is a significant measure of autonomy in the acts of state legislatures and courts, we are buffered against a centralized tyranny. Therefore, i am usually loathe to level criticisms at how any particular state conducts its judicial business.
As a general principle, i do believe that minors should be shielded from the negative effects of publicity. This case seems to me to be an example of a shabby ploy by the parents to profit from both the publicity and the prospect of a large settlement from Jackson. (Jackson settled a case a few years ago, and the amount is not known, but of course, speculation is that it was a very large settlement.) I would think that absent this deplorable conduct on the part of the parents, this minor would be, officially at least, unknown to the public.
That is interesting, Set, as I expected. The difference then being that we also protect kids, at least in this way, against their parents - should the parents be of ill will and/or great stupidity and insensitivity.
So - the media circus stuff would come in under the same arguments?
Well, yes i suppose. I am really not well tonight, and the thinking hurts my poor, shriveled brain. The media circus is beyond anyone's control in this case because of what i have characterized as, and continue to consider the venality of the parents.
Awwwww - cyber chicken soup....