Tell the Truth, Go to Jail

I’m not sure what’s more shocking about the local NBC reporter in Rhode Island who was sentenced to six months of home confinement for refusing to reveal a source — the fact that journalistic integrity is being compromised, or that a television reporter actually has sources.

Jim Taricani, 55, was sentenced to six months of home confinement for refusing to say who leaked him an FBI videotape of a politician taking a bribe. Never mind that his reporting led to a corruption probe that ultimately sent city officials, including the former Mayor, to federal prison.

According to the Associated Press, Taricani is one of several journalists nationwide who have become locked in First Amendment battles with the government over confidential sources. That includes reporters for Time and The New York Times who have been threatened with jail as part of an investigation into the disclosure of an undercover CIA officer’s identity.

Here’s the real problem: Journalism in America has gotten so bad, that when a reporter actually, you know, makes the effort to "report" something real, he or she should be applauded, not punished. If we keep threatening to send journalists to jail, then all we’ll have are a bunch of mindless sychophants with PR degrees who will just regurgitate whatever government officials tells them. I don’t know about you, but I think one Fox News Channel is more than enough.

Read the entire story at http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/6687959/.

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