We received several comments and emails asking, in essence, WTF with this recent Times-Standard editorial.
It was supposedly written in response to a complaint by an unidentified Arcata official who took the Sub-Standard to task for “promoting” Redwood Park as the venue of choice for 4:20 festivities, despite the fact that Arcata PD had announced it would effectively close the park.
Not a very interesting argument, really, which makes it all the more impressive that in a few short paragraphs, the newspaper’s editorial board managed to escalate it from shut-out pot-whiffers to Kim Jong-Il.
Watch and learn.
City officials said they were closing the park because of potential damage to the park. But city officials do not close farmers markets or other events held in Arcata Plaza that result in litter in the plaza and surrounding streets.
True or false: Farmers markets are illegal. Anyone?
[T]here is a very basic American rule of thumb. It is called the First Amendment, which prohibits the making of any law “respecting an establishment of religion,” impeding the free exercise of religion, infringing on the freedom of speech, infringing on the freedom of the press, interfering with the right to peaceably assemble or prohibiting the petitioning for a governmental redress of grievances.
Another very basic American rule of thumb is that stupid shit protected by the First Amendment is still stupid shit. Just FYI.
Equally important for newspapers, the First Amendment is also pivotal to a free and democratic society, which often needs open dialogue and honesty about events that we all know are happening, whether we like it or not.
Dude. Seriously. You wrote about people smoking pot in a park. It wasn’t the twilight’s last gleaming, ok? Our free and Democratic society wouldn’t have skipped a beat if you’d published a tuna casserole recipe instead.
We must remember Bell, Calif., where a number of people were not held accountable, and we must also remember that this newspaper is in the United States, not Libya or China or North Korea.
Which, if you think about it, is a god damn shame.