Every right to say no
October 14, 2007
Because of a prior commitment, I regret I was unable to attend the community meeting at the Red Brick concerning the potential broadcast of the Holocaust denial video. However, allow me to add my name to the list of those who strongly urge that the board of directors of GrassRoots community television to DECLINE the broadcast of this travesty.
As one who has lost family members in the Holocaust and who has led five youth trips (called the March of the Living) to Poland and Israel to study the Holocaust, I wish to address two areas concerning this matter.
1. GrassRoots is a nonprofit corporation and, therefore, has the right to determine the policies which best serve its community. If Mr. Campbell, Ms. Gray or their counterparts want to exercise their First Amendment rights, then I encourage them to stand in the gazebo in Paepcke Park and spew their lies, venom, denials and revisions to anyone ignorant enough to listen. That is, if they can be heard over the din of those of us who will also exercise our First Amendment rights to shout them down! GrassRoots has every right to decline to air the video.
2. The GrassRoots programming philosophy, drawn directly from their website, states: “Because GrassRoots TV12 users and service recipients CONTROL the content by being, and knowing the producers, it is bottom-up grassroots community interest, consensus and norms that determine the content and its limits …” Since this video is NOT in the community interest, it is against the consensus clearly reached at the meeting and in the pages of these letters to the editor, and certainly violates the norms (described in Webster’s Dictionary as “a standard or model for a group) of our community,” then I think this COMMUNITY has spoken loudly about our responsibility and the ethics, values and norms we want represented.
Certainly, Holocaust denial, revision and anti-Semitism DO NOT represent what I think are the standards or models that Aspen or the GrassRoots viewing audience seeks, or displays for itself.
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In this case, the only denial we should be proud to condone is denying access to OUR community television station to Campbell and his cronies, in their attempt to foment hatred, lies and the rewriting of history.
Bennett A. Bramson