- (Photo: The Christian Post/Brendan Giusti)
Two NBC journalists have been told by a Chicago policeman that "your first amendment rights can be terminated if you're creating a scene or whatever."
The journalists protest by explaining they are just doing their jobs by trying to report a story. Nearby onlookers also joined in saying, "He didn't do anything!"
However, their protests were to no avail, and the police officer goes on to tell them that "your presence is creating a scene." He then places one of the men, an NBC photographer, in handcuffs and arrests him.
NBC's Bob Sullivan has described how the photographer was taken away "in handcuffs essentially for taking pictures in a public place. He was released only minutes later, but the damage was done."
The officer still didn't let it go, and he continued to harass the journalists, and even cursed at them and dismissed their reasoning of simply being journalists trying to report on the news.
"I told you to leave, you didn't leave," the officer shouts as he slams the cameraman on a truck and begins handcuffing him.
The National Press Photographers Association has highlighted the problem as an escalating issue over the past year, as more and more journalists are being arrested on American soil. The NPPA told NBC that 70 arrests of photographers and other journalists had been reported to them since September 2011. The association has written a letter to U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder last month saying, "The First Amendment has come under assault on the streets of America. Police have arrested dozens of journalists and activists simply for attempting to document political protests in public spaces."