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Video: Filmmaker Arrested Just for Asking Questions at Couric Event!!

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posted on Apr, 19 2009 @ 03:50 PM
This is just outrageous! doesn't this violate some parts of the constitution?! i didn't see the guy doing anything wrong imo (from what it looked like)

“All I’m trying to do is ask questions!”

John Ziegler: John went to USC to witness and ask questions about Katie Couric getting the Walter Cronkite journalism award for her interview of Sarah Palin. He intended to also give away copies of his film but was literally prevented from doing so. He did not go there hoping for or expecting any sort of confrontation, especially with law enforcement. He was simply shocked and horrified by what happened there, as should every freedom loving American. He did absolutely nothing wrong and was handcuffed, detained and literally abused by law enforcement at the event. The video speaks for itself, John will have plenty to say about this very disturbing episode. This video was shot and edited by Orange County Films. John Ziegler was not involved the the production or editing of this video in any way.

[edit on 19-4-2009 by baseball101]

posted on Apr, 19 2009 @ 04:13 PM
The time when more people agree that our government is a tyrant that should be revolutionized is getting nearer.Eventually we'll all be pissed off enough and there will be a forceful removal of the current government in place. Its inevitable.

posted on Apr, 19 2009 @ 04:16 PM
How ironic, an award named for the most credible newscaster of the 20th century being awarded to someone who's a glorified cat-in-tree reporter. Dan Rather was right, she got promoted by a producer who wanted to prove that women can't be taken seriously as journalists.

posted on Apr, 19 2009 @ 04:26 PM
To be honest, although I'm generally on the side of the people, from what I see in the video, I would not have let him in either. The man was disruptive and was almost acting in a way where he was asking for action to be taken.

Being that this was an award ceremony, I'm not sure why he should have been granted access with this cameras and microphone to do what he wanted. They don't let just anyone in who wants to question award recipients when it comes to other award ceremonies so I'm not sure what he was aiming for here.

He could have been some crazed fan for all they know. Seriously, I don't see how this man had a case.

Imagine you're a celebrity, artist, journalist, etc., and you attend a ceremony to receive an award. You may appreciate valid press members there but it would be completely understandable to feel uncomfortable of any random person being able to come at you under the guise of having questions.

His ultimately goal apparently sounded like he wanted to interview the attendees? It was hard to hear at times so I'm not sure.

Anyways, this particular man was acting very spastic and disruptive. I really don't see the problem here. This wasn't the case of a concerned citizen wanting to find something out about the government or the freedom of the press being stifled. This was some loud mouth trying to cause problems for the attendees.

Please let me know if I'm missing something here.

posted on Apr, 19 2009 @ 04:32 PM
reply to post by AshleyD

i guess we have different interpretations ... from what i gathered, it looked as if he was denied access for whatever reason, and then focused on asking attendees questions about the event ... i don't really understand how that's a bad thing, people have the choice if they want to answer the questions or not and it looked to me like he was not forcibly trying to get into the event, so i don't understand the necessity of his arrest.

edit to add: i admit he was causing a scene (as i would to if i was treated like this), but if the cops would've just left him alone and left it to where he wasn't allowed in, i don't think any of this would have happened ....

[edit on 19-4-2009 by baseball101]

posted on Apr, 19 2009 @ 04:36 PM
I could swear this was already posted here, but I couldn't find it in the search.
At any rate, I am wondering now about the legality of this guy's arrest due to it being on the USC campus rather than on public property(or is the USC campus considered public property?).
If he was on public property, as I understand it, the arrest would be unlawful, but in the case of the producer who was arrested on the sidewalk in front of a hotel in Chicago, I think it was, the sidewalk, I believe, was owned by the hotel which granted them the authority to do the arrest after a complaint was filed or something like that.

Anyways, I still think this kind of stuff is totally disgusting. Basically it seems like there's some new fictitious law that says regardless of weather or not your constitutional rights are being violated by police, if you don't do whatever they say, they can arrest you. Same deal at the southern boarder control checkpoints.

"If you won't let us coerce you into giving up your rights, we'll just come at you harder and potentially violate your constitutional rights at our own discretion and we don't care what you think because our job is hard...wah!"

Seems to me like there is an inevitable confrontation coming down the pike in regard to this kind of crap if things don't change. There is no excuse for turning our country into Nazi Germany..."Halt! Papers, Please!"

edit: AshleyD, how is this any different from reporters asking questions to attendees of the Oscars or any other awards ceremony? Ever watch that show on MTV called "How's your news"? Total reporting spoof show with developmentally disabled reporters asking gag questions at legit awards ceremonies amongst other things. I never saw them getting arrested for ambushing people with their off the wall questions...
The only reason I can imagine that would grant security the right to apprehend him is either a question of who's property he was on which one of the officers eluded to or peddling his wares without some kind of permit?
They tried making up other excuses like he was blocking attendees which sounded to me like total BS and if they're just looking for excuses which are clearly not valid, then I am wondering if they even had a legitimate case.

[edit on 19-4-2009 by 4N6310]

posted on Apr, 19 2009 @ 04:40 PM
reply to post by baseball101

Oh, I agree in that an arrest was a bit much. I was hoping it was just a removal off the premises but the video was hard for me to hear after his mic was grabbed.

...from what i gathered, it looked as if he was denied access for whatever reason, and then focused on asking attendees questions about the event ... i don't really understand how that's a bad thing, people have the choice if they want to answer the questions or not...

My guess is that it was a private event? I would imagine an award ceremony being a private invite-only event with the media being preapproved. I really don't see a problem with this.

It is true the attendees could have just said no but with as disruptive as he was outside, it really would have been unfair to the guests to have been bombarded by such a man. If it had been me attending an event and this guy came up to me with his attitude, I'd feel very uncomfortable.

The guests had every right to attend the ceremony in peace without a man coming in to question them with a camera and mic. Security was there for a reason.

Again, he could have been some crazed fan or another type of weirdo. Just because someone shows up at a private event with a camera and mic doesn't mean they have some sort of 'right' to be admitted.

If so, I'd be showing up everywhere Gerard Butler accepted an award so I could conduct 'Interview business.'

My two humble cents.

posted on Apr, 19 2009 @ 04:44 PM
to the future media reporters on behalf of ATS, Good Luck! You to will be facing this type of action.!

posted on Apr, 19 2009 @ 04:47 PM
reply to post by 4N6310

i'm pretty sure it's public property considering it's a public university, which means taxpayers pay for most of it's operations, etc. ....

posted on Apr, 19 2009 @ 04:48 PM
Ah, here we go:

UPDATE: This afternoon, the Huffington Post spoke to James Grant, the Executive Director of Media Relations for USC. Their version of events goes a little counter to Ziegler's narrative. According to Grant, in the days before his eventual appearance on campus, Ziegler publicly announced his intention to demonstrate at the Couric event. USC was happy to accomodate Ziegler, and provided him with a designated area, where he could register his protest, be seen by event attendees and the student body, and pass out whatever materials he wished. These arrangements were ready upon Ziegler's arrival. However, according to Grant, Ziegler showed up for the event making unexpected demands. He was no longer a demonstrator. Now, he was a journalist, with cameramen in tow, insistent that he had a right to enter the event. Told that the event was invitation only, Ziegler contended that he had the right to range up and down the entryway and stick microphones into the faces of attendees. Said Grant, "The University both respects and facilitates the right to free speech, but we reserve the right to set reasonable ground rules that respect the rights of everyone, and provide for the safety and security of the University community." Ziegler, opting against the ground rules that had been mutually agreed to, was given the choice of leaving campus or being arrested, and eventually chose to leave campus.


So it would seem that this is a non-issue?
John provides his input in a video at the link as well.

[edit on 19-4-2009 by 4N6310]

posted on Apr, 19 2009 @ 04:53 PM
[edit on 19-4-2009 by baseball101]

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