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Michael Moriarity in _Penthouse_ on Law Enforcer Power Expansion
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- Subject: Michael Moriarity in _Penthouse_ on Law Enforcer Power Expansion
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- Date: Wed, 6 Sep 1995 17:13:59 +0200
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From: "Clay Irving" <[email protected]>
Date: Wed, 6 Sep 1995 07:36:47 -0500
To: [email protected]
Subject: (Fwd) Michael Moriarity in _Penthousse_
Thought I'd pass this along -- It was in my mailbox this morning...
--- Forwarded mail from "Linda Thompson, American Justice Federation"
Date: Wed, 6 Sep 95 02:52 EST
To: [email protected]
From: [email protected] (Linda Thompson, American Justice Federation)
Subject: Michael Moriarity in _Penthousse_
In the "Special 26th Anniversary Issue -- Collector's Edition" of
_Penthouse_, Michael Moriarity wrote the "Advise & Dissent" feature.
The cover tickler reads: "Michael Moriarity -- Charging Janet Reno with
TREES FOR ALL THE DEAD CHILDREN
by Michael Moriarity
[The author is an Emmy, Tony, and Golden Globe award-winning actor. He
is also an accomplished classical and jazz pianist-composer, with three
CDs in release and another about to be recorded.]
_A nation may lose its liberties in a day and not miss them for a
I am sitting in a sidewalk cafe in Canada at the moment. I am here
because I can no longer live in the United States of America. The nation
my father knew as a surgeon for the Detroit Police Department and the
country in which my grandfather built a 50-year professional baseball
career has become a nightmare of lies, propaganda, and vicious
disinformation pouring out of Washington, D.C.
Today, the F.B.I. and Janet Reno are asking for new legislation that
would permit them to investigate anyone for simply opposing their ideas
of what causes violence. I protested the attorney general's initial
assault on network television during her back-room meetings with NBC
executives. "What are we talking about here?" asked Dick Wolf, executive
producer of "Law and Order." "Federally controlled programming between
the hours of three and six?"
"How about three to nine."
Janet Reno said that without a question mark. It was not a request. It
seemed to her a foregone conclusion. She had the right to say the most
insane thing I've heard from a reasonably well-dressed person, let alone
the highest law-enforcement officer in the land. she claimed that the
mere words of a murder-mystery TV show were dangerous to the health of
I simply asked that she be relieved of her post and sent on a long
vacation and given therapy. Who left their jobs instead? Philip Heymann,
her respected deputy, and yours truly. Resignations in protest. Now she
and her Justice Department -- and even more recently, Bob Dole, the next
frighteningly viable candidate for president of the United States --
would like to brand all artists and producers dealing with dramatizes
violence and sex as accessories to drive-by shootings, terrorist
bombings, and the moral degeneration of our nation. And she's hoping
that people like me and Rush Limbaugh, and anyone who makes fun of her,
like David Letterman, will be counted by the American public as
accessories to the bombing in Oklahoma.
Did Al Capone really learn everything he knew from George Raft? Was the
death of Christopher Marlowe a product of the fight scenes in William
Shakespeare's _Romeo and Juliet_?
Blaming violent drama for real-life violence is like indicting
_Penthouse_ for the spread of AIDS.
Until I left my country, I was living in a novel by Franz Kafka, with
characters like the real Elie Wiesel telling me, "It's not possible,
Michael. This is America."
They told Elie and his family the same thing in Europe, just before they
carted him off to Auschwitz. "It's not possible, Elie. This is Germany."
How far is Janet Reno willing to go in her definition of what is causing
"I know 'Murder She Wrote' has no violent images," said the attorney
general, "but they talk about nothing but violence." What does this
mean? Does she charge that Jessica Fletcher was an agent provocateur for
Timothy McVeigh in the Oklahoma City bombing? Has Angela Lansbury been
derelict in her concern for the children? Was Reno's fear of language,
this frontal assault on the entire meaning of the First Amendment,
merely a lapse in the attorney general's thinking process? As "kooky"
and as "noisy" and as "paranoid" as I am accused of being, I have never
put together a sentence quite that sick.
Where was the reaction from the Fourth Estate, the one branch of our
democratic process that is sworn, above all, to uphold our freedom of
speech? Today, unfortunately, the media is a direct extension of the
two-party system, and now that the Republicans and Democrats are a
coalition dedicated to expanding federal law-enforcement armies
exponentially, there is little protest from the pundits. A coalition in
a two-party democracy is not an option. It is tyranny.
Since mainstream American journalism is either Republican or Democratic,
we now hear no outcry (although _The New York Times_ did quote one
"law-enforcement official at the Treasury Department .. who spoke on
condition that he not be named, [who] said there was a tremendous
potential for abuse in some of the recent F.B.I. proposals to relax the
standards for investigating suspected terrorists").
Speaking out publicly would risk careers, and if anything is at fault
for the disastrous situation we are in, it is a mad obsession with
career. Read John Dean's _Blind Ambition_ if you don't believe me. My
role in the miniseries "Holocaust" -- that of the Nazi lawyer Eric Dorf
-- was inspired by the idea that if Watergate's John Dean were a German
professional in the 1930s and less sensitive to his own corruption, he
would have risen to the very top of the Third Reich. With no strong
feelings, apart from an obsession with his own career, such a man would
find himself standing proudly at the side of Adolf Hitler.
"Free speech," the Justice Department seems to be saying, "is the root
cause of all violence." Has anyone been fired for such a tyrannical
notion? No, but Jocelyn Elders was dismissed for broaching the
possibility that our drug laws should be reexamined, and for speaking
honestly about AIDS and condoms and children.
I began my campaign fighting the drug laws. I'm right back to those
statutes as the main cause of domestic violence in America. Only this
time the violence is not the drive-by shootings in ghettos. It is the
speed with which our law enforcement has been destroyed from within by
its own increasing power.
The F.B.I. will be given almost absolute power to harass and wiretap and
investigate any opponent of the standing government. The drug laws and
now, so conveniently, the Oklahoma City bombing are the linchpins for
billions of dollars pouring into the American law-enforcement community.
Their increasing freedom to hassle suspected anti-big-government
agitators must not be threatened.
Will it work? Not if this nation sees the tapes called _Waco: The Big
Lie_, a two-part examination of the murder of the Branch Davidians.
This video, which Gary Null wrote about in _Penthouse_ this past April,
is all over the country now, and more and more people will see it
despite how Janet Reno, the F.B.I., and the leadership of both parties
try to misinform the public about the tapes and their maker, Linda
Thompson. The obvious questions raised by Thompson's analysis of
government-approved violence are damning to the F.B.I., the Bureau of
Alcohol, Tobacco, and Firearms, Janet Reno, and all other parties
accessory to the obvious cover-up. They show hard evidence of a
government lynch mob at Waco.
If the Rodney King tapes won him $2 million, the implications of _Waco:
The Big Lie_ could win the surviving Branch Davidians tens and possibly
hundreds of millions from the government, criminal charges against
perpetrators, and the downfall of major careerists in the current
Now, with the help of her spokesmen, who just happen to be President
Clinton and Bob Dole, possibly the next occupant of the White House,
Janet Reno is trying to convince America that her enemies are just as
bad as her own army. They can't be worse. Try as she may, she knows that
history cannot draw the bombers of children as any worse than the
burners of children.
Washington, D.C., is saying that there is a difference between the
children of Waco and the children of Oklahoma City. The deaths in
Oklahoma warrant capital punishment. "Swift and severe punishment," was
the fate the president and attorney general promised for the killers of
Since the F.B.I., the C.I.A., A.T.F., and other arms of federal law
enforcement have been gutting the Bill of Rights for years, such threats
are not unlike the reprisals announced in Germany following the
What about the death of civilians? Not only does Reno not call for
capital punishment for the incineration of the Waco children and the
equally cold-blooded murders in Idaho of survivalist Randy Weaver's wife
and child by federal agents, her response to these crimes doesn't even
merit the term _pursuit of justice_. And any movement that calls for
such justice, like Linda Thompson's American Justice Federation, is
Who has more blood on their hands? Network television or federal law
Until justice befalls the Justice Department, a tree must be planted for
all the children of violence ... including the children of Waco.
"Peace is not the absence of war," said one letter written to me while I
was performing in the television series "Law and Order." "It is the
presence of Just."
---End of forwarded mail from "Linda Thompson, American Justice
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