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DARE To Be Informed

PEN America’s take on the most pressing threats to free expression


New York Art Scene Anxiously Waits for Decision on N.E.A.’s Fate
The New York City artistic community is suddenly vulnerable to budget cuts in Washington, where the administration of President Trump is considering eliminating the National Endowment for the Arts.

Women’s strike organizers arrested in New York on a day of protests worldwide
Police in New York arrested three leaders of the Women’s March movement for blocking traffic outside the Trump International Hotel on Wednesday as they took part in the global “Day Without Women” strike, called to mark International Women’s Day.

Trump’s new travel ban blocks migrants from six nations, sparing Iraq
President Trump signed an executive order blocking citizens of six predominantly Muslim countries from entering the United States, the most significant hardening of immigration policy in generations. The new order continued to impose a 90-day ban on travelers, removing Iraq from the original ban.

Attack on ‘Bell Curve’ author stuns Middlebury College
Students and professors at Middlebury College were ashamed and embarrassed after violent attacks on a controversial conservative social scientist has forced the school to reconsider what it means to embrace free speech.


Editor Thomas Nilsen is declared unwanted in Russia by Border Guards
When Thomas Nilsen on Wednesday afternoon arrived in Borisoglebsk, the border-crossing point between Russia and Norway, he was quickly taken aside by Federal Security Service border guards and told he was undesirable in Russia.

Prosecution of Lena Hendry violates right to free expression
A Kuala Lumpur court found activist Lendry guilty of organizing a private screening of the award-winning human rights documentary, No Fire Zone: The Killing Fields of Sri Lanka, without censorship board approval nearly four years ago. She will be sentenced on 22 March, and faces fines and up to three years in prison.

Gambian journalist attacked at press conference of ruling coalition
A Gambian journalist was attacked by angry supporters of the main ruling coalition party, the United Democratic Party whose leader is a veteran politician and now Foreign Affairs minister, Ousainou Darboe.

Journalist shot dead by apparent hit squad in Mexico
A journalist was murdered in the troubled southern state of Guerrero, Mexican authorities said Friday, adding to a long list of killed reporters in what is considered one of the world’s most dangerous countries for media professionals.

Deeper Analysis

FCC chairman dodges question on if press is ‘enemy’ of Americans
Federal Communications Commission Chairman Ajit Pai on Wednesday dodged questions about whether he agrees with President Trump’s views of the media. During an oversight hearing, Sen. Tom Udall asked Pai if he shares Trump’s belief that the press is an “enemy of the American people.”

A major Supreme Court case could affect the way you access Twitter and Facebook
The Supreme Court case Peckingham v. North Carolina could prevent sex offenders from using social media. While the law may seem targeted, constitutional scholars warn it could have chilling effects on many Americans’ First Amendment rights.


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