For over two weeks now, failed retransmission negotiations between AT&T and Nexstar Media Group…
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TV Blackouts Reconfirm Need for Free Market Regulatory Reform

For over two weeks now, failed retransmission negotiations between AT&T and Nexstar Media Group have deprived customers across the United States of 120 Nexstar television stations in 97 markets.

That's unfortunately something to which far too many Americans have become accustomed recently, as 2019 has already witnessed more TV blackouts than any year in history.  And the news only gets worse:  CBS is now warning that stations in numerous major markets, including New York, Los Angeles, Chicago, Philadelphia, Dallas and others, could be blacked out as this week concludes.

Here's the overarching problem.  Current laws dating all the way back to 1992 empower the federal government to pick TV market winners and losers by tipping the scales during negotiations.  Those laws governing what…[more]

July 18, 2019 • 08:58 pm

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Gallup: Public Support For Police Jumps By Record Margin Print
By Timothy H. Lee
Thursday, October 27 2016
According to a new Gallup survey released just this week, public respect for the nation's police officers surged by a record margin over the past calendar year.

Imagine how it feels to walk out your door for work each morning with the ominous awareness that due to the very nature of your job, you may not ever walk back through that door again. 

To be sure, unexpected tragedy can strike any one of us at any time, in any variety of ways.  Very few of us, however, have jobs that by definition entail risk of death on a daily, hourly or even moment-to-moment basis. 

Yet police officers face that reality every single day.  It's an oftentimes thankless career, in service of a public that judging by celebrity grandstanding and media narrative doesn't seem to have their backs. 

But there's actually very encouraging news to report. 

According to a new Gallup survey released just this week, public respect for the nation's police officers surged by a record margin over the past calendar year: 

Three in four Americans (76%) say they have 'a great deal' of respect for the police in their area, up 12 percentage points from last year.  In addition to the large majority of Americans expressing 'a great deal' of respect for their local police, 17% say they have 'some' respect while 7% say they have 'hardly any.'  Gallup has asked this question nine times since 1965.  The percentage who say they respect the police is significantly higher now than in any measurement taken since the 1990s, and is just one point below the high of 77% recorded in 1967.  Solid majorities of Americans have said they respect their local law enforcement in all polls conducted since 1965. 

Paradoxically, that record surge occurs precisely while antagonists like "Black Lives Matter" protestors, rioters and celebrities like San Francisco 49ers second-string quarterback Colin Kaepernick malign police, as Gallup noted in its survey: 

The sharp increase over the past year in professed respect for local law enforcement comes as many police say they feel they are on the defensive - both politically and for their lives while they are on duty - amid heated national discussions on police brutality and shootings. 

Despite the popularity boomerang effect that anti-police antagonists have suffered, however, that doesn't mean their actions haven't negatively affected other institutions.  According to a separate survey recently released by Rasmussen Reports, for example, Americans are tuning out the National Football League (NFL) due to the protests: 

A sizable number of Americans say they may give the National Football League a pass this year, thanks to player protests over racial issues.  A new Rasmussen Reports national telephone and online survey finds that nearly one-third (32%) of American adults say they are less likely to watch an NFL game because of the growing number of Black Lives Matter protests by players on the field.  Only 13% say they are more likely to watch a game because of the protests. 

Additionally, Rasmussen notes that the protests have had a blowback effect on the movement itself:  "Part of the problem for Black Lives matter may be that only 26% think that it supports reforms to ensure that all Americans are treated fairly under the law." 

Ouch.  So 93% of the country expresses support toward police, whereas only 26% even agree that the Black Lives Matter movement actually supports what it claims to support. 

More disturbingly, the anti-police movement has had tangible negative effects on the inner cities and minority populations. 

According to the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), homicides increased by 12% in 2015, the largest annual leap since the 1960s.  Black Americans were the hardest hit, with a shocking 900 more black males dead in 2015 compared to the year prior.  Just as alarming is the fact that murders of police by firearms have increased by 47% so far this year compared to last year, including a 100% increase in firearm assaults on police in Chicago. 

That horrific increase comes immediately on the heels of the Ferguson, Missouri and other protests of late 2014.  As Manhattan Institute Fellow Heather MacDonald observed, the riots and demonization of police have altered how they approach their jobs of serving and protecting: 

Officers are second-guessing their own justified use of force for fear of being labeled racist and losing their jobs, if not their freedom.  On Oct. 5 a female officer in Chicago was beaten unconscious by a suspect in a car crash, who repeatedly bashed her face into the concrete and tore out chunks of her hair.  She refrained from using her gun, she said, because she didn't want to become the next viral video in the Black Lives Matter narrative. 

Accordingly, the anti-police movement has had substantive effect, but not as intended. 

Hopefully, however, political leaders, media voices, celebrity culture and police themselves will recognize that the general public overwhelmingly supports the nation's police officers.  Not only will that at least reassure police of their value to us, it will also hopefully help reverse the alarming increase in violence that the nation has witnessed over the past year. 

Question of the Week   
On July 20, 1969, the first man to walk on the Moon was Neil Armstrong, making “one giant leap for Mankind.” Who was the last person to walk on the Moon?
More Questions
Quote of the Day   
 
"Sen. Bernie Sanders is one of the many faces that make up the progressive left within the Democratic Party. He's an unapologetic democratic socialist. He has an economic agenda that would cost us trillions of dollars. And he's staunchly pro-labor union. That is until his campaign staff starts making demands for better pay, right? Yeah, it seems so. The Sanders campaign has unionized and is demanding…[more]
 
 
—Matt Vespa, Townhall.com Senior Editor
— Matt Vespa, Townhall.com Senior Editor
 
Liberty Poll   

In the current U.S. House of Representatives, who is, at the practical level, most in control of the agenda?