Over at The Huffington Post, self-pitying slaphead Michael Smerconish portrays himself as a Holocaust/lynching victim. Why? Because Media Matters and/or some unnamed unnamed bloggers criticized his insipid on-air comments.
See how they whine:
Ah, but the floodgates are now open. The cyber-lynching by faceless, nameless bloggers of talk-show hosts like me has begun.
Individuals who hide behind the anonymity afforded by the Internet are seeking to squelch the First Amendment right of people whose identities are readily known and who, unlike their cowardly critics, put their names and credibility on the line each and every day on matters of public concern. Left unconfronted, it is a dangerous practice in the making.
Of course, the staff of Media Matters have names and presumably faces, and Schmuckonish doesn't identify any faceless or nameless bloggers in his pitiful screed.
More importantly, Smerconish doesn't understand the First Amendment. As Harry Shearer pointed out on Friday's Countdown, the Bill of Rights doesn't guarantee anyone a syndicated radio deal or continued employment by a media conglomerate. Nor does it provide Smerconish with a shield against criticism from those who disagree with his ignorant tripe. It does (at least in theory) prevent government interference with the rights of those nasty, nameless bloggers whose rights, to the Schmuck's lament, are equal to his own.
When Smerconish loses his program -- either by popular demand, the lack thereof or as a result of his own ignorance -- he can still exercise his First Amendments rights for the price of internet connection and free account at Blogger. And for $3.50 and his credibility more, he can still get a cup of coffee.
Update: More on free speech from the named and visaged Tom Hilton.