But there is not much attempt at analysis of the philosophical grounds of free speech or freedom of the press, or much effort to find the limits of the freedoms and powers Hentoff wants to defend. In this respect he is typical of journalists who complain about the fate of the First Amendment in the courts, though he writes better and with more enthusiasm and knowledge than most. The press takes the Amendment as a kind of private charter [bold mine], and attacks more or less automatically every refusal of the courts to find some further protection in that charter. The newspapers and networks de- nounced the decisions in the Farber and Herbert cases as fiercely—indeed even more fiercely—than those in the cases of The Progressive and Snepp.
- Am I correct that charter signifies the following?
- I don't understand why the press'd regard it so, when they have in-house lawyers who'd disadvise them so?