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A horrifying weekend of hate and violence in Charlottesville ends with no direct presidential condemnation of the racists, neo-Nazis, and their rhetoric, and with leaders of the white supremacist groups expressing their appreciation of his failure—once again—to do so. White House follows up President Trump’s “all sides” equivocation with an unattributed statement that “of course” he rejects such bigotry. For others, the events in Charlottesville provoke reckoning on history, symbols, the power of words, and what must be done in deed, including securing threatened voting rights and fully prosecuting hate crimes. PEN America reflects on peaceful free expression and the rising levels of white supremacist rhetoric nationwide: “Acknowledging the right of such groups to speak does not require anyone to condone their message or stay silent as they spread it.”

The most pressing threats and notable goings-on in free expression today


Trump Is Criticized for Not Calling Out White Supremacists
While many faulted Trump’s condemnation of the violence at Charlottesville for being too vague, David Duke, former Ku Klux Klan leader, was among the few Trump critics who thought the president had gone too far. “I would recommend you take a good look in the mirror & remember it was White Americans who put you in the presidency, not radical leftists,” he wrote on Twitter.

White House confronts backlash over Trump’s remarks on Charlottesville
In a statement and through aides appearing on Sunday talk shows, the White House defended Trump’s general condemnation: “Of course that includes white supremacists, KKK, Neo-Nazi and all extremist groups,” elaborating on remarks in which he decried an “egregious display of hatred, bigotry and violence on many sides.”

Charlottesville and the Effort to Downplay Racism in America
The belief that America is better than its white-supremacist history is sometimes an excuse masquerading as encouragement. What happened in Charlottesville is less an aberrant travesty in a progressive enclave than it is a reminder of how much evil can be obscured by the appearance of good.

Pence assails media for criticizing Trump over Charlottesville
Pence said, during a visit to Colombia, that it was appropriate to criticize not only the white supremacists behind the “Unite the Right” march but also the counter-protesters. In his Saturday statement, Trump condemned the violence but made it clear he blamed not only the white supremacists but also others on the scene.

Domain name provider GoDaddy boots neo-Nazi site after a derogatory story on the Charlottesville victim
GoDaddy will cancel its service for The Daily Stormer following a derogatory story about Heather Heyer, a counter-protester killed at the Charlottesville rally. In a statement, GoDaddy spokesman Dan Race said: “We believe this type of article could incite additional violence, which violates our terms of service.”

How a Conservative TV Giant Is Ridding Itself of Regulation
The merger with Tribune would transform Sinclair Broadcasting Group into a media juggernaut, reaching 7 out of 10 U.S. homes, including in markets in several swing states such as Pennsylvania, Ohio, and North Carolina, and would gain entry into the biggest urban markets: New York, Los Angeles, and Chicago.

‘Chilling,’ cried Fox News when one of its reporters was targeted in a leak case. Where’s the outrage now?
Is Fox News a stalwart defender of the press freedoms it depends on? Well, that may depend on the year. It might even depend on who is the president. These days, some of the most prominent voices at Fox News sing in unison—not with their media colleagues, but with the president’s scathing opposition to the news media.

President Trump Calls Democrats and the Media His ‘Enemies’ in New Campaign Ad
The targeted ad ran just a day after the president called for unity following what he said was violence and bigotry “on many sides” when a deadly white supremacist rally broke out in Charlottesville, Va., over the removal of a Confederate monument.

Oakland Raiders Running Back Marshawn Lynch Sits During National Anthem
Marshawn Lynch remained seated during the national anthem before Saturday’s exhibition opener against the Arizona Cardinals. The move looked like a silent protest like that of Colin Kaepernick’s against racism and police brutality last season, although it’s unclear whether it had anything to do with the events in Charlottesville.


Ranking countries by their blasphemy laws
Blasphemy laws, in the sense of laws that penalise speech or acts that disrespect God or the sacred, are “astonishingly widespread”. From the harshest laws to the mildest, all of them deviate in some degree from the international norms that uphold freedom of belief and expression.

Radio silence: 24-hour broadcast of BBC World Service dropped in Hong Kong
After nearly 40 years of continuous broadcast, a 24-hour transmission of the BBC World Service will go silent, replaced with programming from China’s state radio channel. The change is highly symbolic, replacing one of the world’s most respected news sources with one replete with censorship and a mission to push the Communist party line.

Özgür Gündem substitute editor Murat Çelikkan sent to prison
Journalist and human rights defender Murat Çelikkan was sent to prison in Turkey today for one year and six months. Most recently he was the substitute editor for Özgür Gündem, a Turkish-language daily newspaper popular with the country’s Kurdish citizens, which has long faced persecution from the authorities.

DARE is a project of PEN America’s #LouderTogether campaign, bringing you a daily-curated roundup of the most important free expression-related news from the U.S. and abroad. Send your feedback and story suggestions to [email protected]