ACLU

The Sinclair merger is extremely dangerous to our democracy

Email sent: Jul 11, 2018 7:15 am

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ACLU

Hi ACLU Supporter

You've no doubt heard of the Trump administration's horrific policy of tearing away children from their families at the border. Many media outlets have been defying the White House's talking points to expose this terrible story. But a looming threat to our First Amendment rights could make this impossible.

The Sinclair Broadcasting Group forced its local TV stations to air segments blaming liberals for exaggerating the family separation crisis. Now, Sinclair has proposed a merger with Tribune Media that would create a broadcasting conglomerate with unprecedented power, controlling 200 TV stations throughout the country.

We have 24 hours to meet the deadline: Submit a public comment telling the FCC to stop this merger before it happens. A Sinclair-Tribune merger would severely threaten our free speech rights.

A diverse media is essential to keeping informed the Supreme Court said so in its 1969 decision in Red Lion Broadcasting Co. v. FCC. By limiting the views that local anchors can express, Sinclair can pose serious threats to the future of our democracy.

Here are our next steps to stop this deal:

  • Demand the FCC stop this merger, and spread the word on social media. We need to gather as much steam as possible until the comment period closes this Thursday, July 12, at which point...
  • The FCC will read and consider our comments as they contemplate the proposed merger.
  • The FCC has until August 8 to make a decision, or else the deal proposition will expire saving us all from this dangerous threat to our constitutional freedoms.

ACLU Supporter, will you take the first step to save our First Amendment rights? Submit your public comment now.

It's never been more critical to safeguard our media. President Trump has made clear, time and time again, that he's against freedom of the press unless it's press in his favor. He once tweeted, "Sinclair is far superior to CNN and even more Fake NBC, which is a total joke." Guess which side he's on with this proposed merger?

We don't have a second to spare as the FCC careens recklessly toward pushing through a merger deal that would make Sinclair the largest TV broadcasting conglomerate this country has ever seen. We can't let this corporation take away our rights to a free press and free speech.

Thanks for speaking up for our rights,

Ben Wizner

Ben Wizner
Director of the ACLU Speech, Privacy, and Technology Project

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