Daily Newspaper and Travel Guide
for Pecos Country
of West Texas
Tuesday, June 10, 2003
By Smokey Briggs
"She didn't know the gun was loaded," the country and western lyric goes
or something close to it. It is a classic country and western ditty dealing
in heartache, humor, murder and justice.
To make a long story short mom caught dad making time with another gal
and blasted him.
Her defense is that she did not know the gun was loaded. The punch line
is that she only reloaded once.
The song appeals to our sense of justice, but not even the simplest of
fools really believes she did not know the gun was loaded.
Well, apparently, now Senator Hillary Clinton did not know the gun was
loaded back when she was simply the First Lady (and I use the term loosely)
and Bill told her about the Monica Lewinsky story that was about to break.
That is what she claims in her book that she "wrote" with the help of
According to Associated Press reports regarding the contents of the book
Hillary believed Bill when he told her that Monica was lying - right up
to moment nearly seven months later when he told her there was some truth
to Ms. Lewinsky's tale.
I'm not sure which is more frightening.
Choice "A" is that she did not know Bill was fibbing about his Oval Office
Choice "B" is that she knew and now expects us to be stupid enough to
believe her when she says the "I did not know the gun was loaded."
Come on Hillary.
After being married to the man for how many decades? - you did not know
he was lying?
How many hints do you need?
First, his lips were moving.
Big hint there.
Second, he was denying an attempted/consummated affair with a very young,
rather plain looking, chunky brunette over whom he had plenty of power to
Come on Hillary. That was the classic Bill Clinton M.O.
My dog Jake might as well deny sucking eggs with yolk dripping off his
lips and shells stuck to his nose.
So, either Hillary is a bimbo incapable of deducting that the wet stuff
falling from the sky will do her harm if she does not quit starring up at
it, or she thinks we are morons incapable of lowering our heads enough to
keep the rain from flooding our lungs.
As much as I dislike Mrs. Clinton, I do not think she is so stupid as
to really believe Bill - about anything. I imagine that she sticks her head
out the window to check when he tells her the sun is out and it is lunchtime.
That leaves us with choice "B" - she thinks we are stupid.
And that I believe.
It fits the liberal mindset that all but themselves are too dumb to get
in out of the rain without help from our good government.
Of course, when it comes to the state of New York she is correct.
I have proof.
They elected Hillary to the Senate.
EDITOR'S NOTE: Smokey Briggs is the editor and publisher of the
Pecos Enterprise whose column appears on Tuesdays. He can be e-mailed at:
Death of DPS reporter's license a good thing but
the Texas Press should be ashamed it ever existed
Well, the Department of Public Safety has finally stopped trying to issue
licenses to members of the Texas press, and so, finally, the Texas press
will finally stop allowing itself to be licensed by a government agency
in clear violation of the First Amendment.
Since the 1970's DPS has issued press cards to members of the "working
Newspapers and other media outlets applied for cards for individual reporters
and DPS would then deign to issue a card with the reporter's picture and
credentials on it.
When reporters showed up at the scene of an accident or at city hall
or dozens of other places, would be censors liked to ask for I.D.
Sadly, many Texas newspapers submitted to this de facto licensing scheme.
"It really isn't a license."
"It just helps policemen do their job."
The excuses for submitting to this license were many.
Most sounded pretty good at first listen.
But none were valid.
Despite all the rational explanations and pretty justifications the truth
of the matter was that it was a de facto license.
Such licensing of the press by any government agency for any reason violates
the letter and spirit of the First Amendment.
There are many instances when seemingly common sense ideas conflict with
The Fourth Amendment guarantee against unreasonable search and seizure
is an excellent example.
Why would a law-abiding citizen deny a peace officer's request to search
his car or property? What have you got to hide?
Fortunately, that is not the right question.
The right question is why should a law-abiding citizen submit to a search
by the government when there is no rational reason for the government to
Constitutional guarantees were created for a reason and when we ignore
those protections, or sacrifice them for seemingly logical reasons, we invite
a weakening of those rights.
The de facto licensing of the press by DPS was justified by an "ends
justify the means" line of thought by reporters and editors across the state.
When it comes to the Constitution the ends can never justify the means.
In this instance, the day the press agrees to allow the government to
decide who is, and who is not, a reporter, you no longer have a truly free
Every member of this nation is a member of the press when it comes to
the right to ask questions of officials and gather information no matter
the issue or the place.
Reporters do not have special privileges granted by the state. The day
they do is the day they cease being reporters and become mouthpieces for
It is a good thing that this licensing system has been declared dead
by the DPS.
It is sad that the reason for its death is the economic cost to the state,
and not the absolute refusal of newsmen across the state to submit to state
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York M. "Smokey" Briggs, Publisher
Division of Buckner News Alliance, Inc.
324 S. Cedar St., Pecos, TX 79772
Phone 432-445-5475, FAX 432-445-4321
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