Violations of Constitutional rights, sadly, still happen quite a bit in the United States. Many of those violations are far worse than abridging freedom of speech and of the press since they ruin or even end lives. I don’t in any way mean to imply that this is the worst infringement of rights or belittle other, more serious instances.
That said, reports that the LAPD has issued a list of media approved to cover a raid of the Occupy LA camp is particularly egregious since the LA press is essentially condoning the infringement of its own rights.
The media by definition has a platform to report on and expose violations of the first amendment. If they fail to do that, that alone is basically consent. But beyond that when reporters like Shelby Grad of the LA Times and Dakota Smith of the LA Daily News allow their names to be put on a list like this, I see it as their declaration that it’s okay. And that doesn’t even touch on the Fox and CBS affiliates who are openly not showing images they’re “not allowed” to show.
As a journalist I would never let my name be associated with something like this, and I’m extremely disappointed in Smith, Grad, the Times, the Daily News, the AP and Reuters and the TV and radio outlets that apparently disagree. They should be ashamed of the precedent they’re setting and I only hope their consent doesn’t encourage other government bodies to follow suit and tell their local media who can cover the news and what they can and can’t report.