Wednesday, July 06, 2005

Hey, Woodward and Bernstein, give it up.

Have you been paying attention to the big stink over those two reporters who won't reveal their sources? Let me give you a quick explanation.

Two reporters published the name of an undercover C.I.A. Operative. Since it's against the law to reveal the name of an undercover C.I.A. Operative, the Feds are leaning on the reporters to reveal who told them. The reporters are refusing to reveal their source as reporters have been doing for decades.

Normally, I would be with the reporters on this one but I'm not and here's why:

If a person commits a crime and then tells a reporter about it, the reporter should not be forced to reveal the person's identity.
However, in this case, the crime that was committed was talking to the reporter. The reporter is no longer hearing details of a crime but is participating in the criminal act. For this they should be considered an accessory. It is not a crime if someone tells you they have done something criminal. It is a crime if you assist a person in committing a criminal act.

See the difference?

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