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Open & Shut

A recent collection of funny, fascinating, nonsensical or just notable newsworthy quotations From the Fall 2005 issue of The News…

A recent collection of funny, fascinating, nonsensical or just notable newsworthy quotations

From the Fall 2005 issue of The News Media & The Law, page 32.

“If you rat a guy you’re going to go to hell forever. I’m not going to rat anybody.”

&#151 Cleveland Scene Editor Pete Kotz in a July Associated Press article on protecting the identity of a source who provided documents.

“I, for one, would like more leaks, not less, from this White House.”

&#151 Rep. Rahm Emanuel (D-Ill.) in a July floor speech about executive branch controls of unclassified information.

“Most importantly, all of this occurred in the sunlight of a public trial. There were no secret proceedings, no indefinite detention, no denial of counsel.”

&#151 U.S. District Judge John C. Coughenour in Seattle during the July sentencing of Ahmed Ressam, the man convicted of plotting to bomb the Los Angeles Airport on the 2000 millennium.

“If you really do hard-hitting journalism and work long enough, you’re destined to be sued. If you hang around longer and work harder, you’re destined to end up in jail.”

&#151 Dallas lawyer Robert Latham, who wrote a friend-of-the-court brief for Vanessa Leggett, the Texas freelance writer who spent more than five months in jail in 2001-02 for refusing to turn over notes, in August in the San Antonio Express-News.

“[She is] enjoying a steak at dinner, which you are interrupting.”

&#151 New York Times Publisher Arthur Sulzberger Jr. to a Wall Street Journal reporter who called him Sept. 29 to confirm Judith Miller’s release from jail hours earlier.

“Who wants to see a journalist in jail?”

&#151 Ambassador Joseph Wilson, whose wife is CIA operative Valerie Plame, quoted in The Philadelphia Inquirer story on Miller’s release.

“Full freedom should be given to journalists to take pictures and film in the field. Without images what would we know of history? . . . We would know nothing.”

&#151 Iraqi Justice Minister Abdul Hussein Shandal in a September interview with Reuters.

“The government doesn’t want me to see the plan, says they don’t have to give it to me, which I quite frankly find offensive. I want to see the plan with my own eyes, and I’m not going to rely upon the assertions of government lawyers.”

&#151 U.S. District Judge Emmet G. Sullivan in Washington, D.C., demanding in September that he be given a plan for protecting Washington area rails from chemical attack.

“The First Amendment has not repealed the ancient rule of life, that he who pays the piper calls the tune.”

&#151 U.S. Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia telling an audience at the Juilliard School in September that it is not censorship when the government decides what artwork it funds is worthwhile.

”My new best friend, Senator Thompson, assures me that television cameras are nothing to be afraid of.”

&#151 Chief Justice John Roberts during his Senate confirmation hearing, referring to former Tennessee senator-turned-actor Fred Thompson, who guided Roberts through the nomination process.


Ho (n.) 1. slang. A whore or prostitute. 2. slang. A derogatory word for women, popular in rap music. See U.S. v. Murphy, 406 F.3d 857 (7th Cir. 2005) Usage: Defendant Darron J. Murphy Sr. called a witness in the case “a snitch bitch ‘hoe,'” according to the trial transcript. The 7th Circuit panel noted in a footnote: “A ‘hoe,’ of course, is a tool used for weeding and gardening. We think the court reporter, unfamiliar with rap music (perhaps thankfully so), misunderstood [the witness’] response. We have taken the liberty of changing ‘hoe’ to ‘ho,’ a staple of rap music vernacular as for example, when Ludacris raps ‘You doin’ ho activities with ho tendencies.'”