TMA Joins “In Defense of Freedom” Coalition

Media Advisory – September 21, 2001


The Multiracial Activist
and The Abolitionist Examiner
760-875-8547 phone/fax

Statement by Editor & Publisher James Landrith:

“As we begin the process of finding those responsible for the horrific actions of September 11th, let us take a deep breath and proceed with caution.”

“Congress and the Administration are currently considering a wide array of anti-terrorism provisions that will have a broad impact on the lives of ALL Americans. A short list of proposals includes: requiring American citizens and foreign nationals to carry national ID smartcards with the capability of tracking medical, travel or other personal data; expanded use of “secret evidence” in legal proceedings against aliens; and expanded right of detention of foreigners for an unlimited period in a time of national emergency.”

“We must be especially careful not to trade away our civil liberties in a rush to “do something.” Now, more than ever there is a need to be vigilant in our efforts to preserve our most basic freedoms. No amount of trading away of long-cherished freedoms will result in a more secure America. Such trading of freedom for security will only result in the existence of neither. Americans need to think six months, a year, or two years down the road when considering the impact of such trade-offs. What looks like a good idea today, may not be so palatable a year or two from now. It may not be reversible.”

“I call on Congress and the Administration to practice restraint and good government when considering how to respond to these tragic events. If a measure is worthy of legislative consideration, then it is also worthy of public scrutiny. Integrity and fairness dictate that there should be no more “middle of the night” votes on any measures that affect the civil liberties of American citizens or legal alien residents. All proposals must be weighed and measured against our Constitution and Bill of Rights. Security means nothing if freedom has been replaced with control.”

“I also call on all Americans to practice restraint and courtesy. We must be careful not to judge others based on perceived appearance or religion. People of many nations and religions lost family and friends on September 11. The blame for these horrific actions lie solely with individuals and specific organizations, not within “ethnic,” “racial” or religious demographics. All those participating in harassment or violence against those they perceive to be of a particular “racial”, ethnic” or religious background must be punished to full extent of the law, to do otherwise would be un-American.”

“With that said, I want to announce the participation of The Multiracial Activist and The Abolitionist Examiner in a brand-new coalition called “In Defense of Freedom,” dedicated to preserving civil liberties in this time of crisis.”

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