Scared Monkeys Radio

For over a decade, Dana Pretzer has been doing his own brand of unique, entertaining, informed and refreshing style of talk radio. Talk radio where he allows the guest to talk, answer questions and inform the listeners on the important news stories of the day. Dana refers to it as "Main Street Media." We like to refer to it as a welcome and appreciated change.

Dana Pretzer brings his energetic yet relaxed demeanor and his well prepared yet spontaneous style of interviews to Scared Monkeys. Along with some of the biggest and most high-profile guests in the news today. Dana also brings a background in satellite radio and over 20 years in law enforcement. That, coupled with his relaxed yet professional and focused demeanor, makes him a natural behind the SMR microphone.

Dana and Scared Monkeys Radio focuses on Missing Persons, Unsolved Mysteries, Victims Rights, Politics, Crime & Punishment, Exploited Children, Entertainment, Technology and whatever the breaking and relevant stories are of the day. The stories that people want to talk about and hear.
Daily Commentary – Friday, May 15th, 2009 – What is Free Speech?
May 15th, 2009 Daily Commentary

  • Do free speech rights protect “cyberbullying?”

Comment from Justen May 15, 2009, 4:19 pm

I have to say I strongly disagree here, for multiple reasons.

First off, the handful of children who have harmed themselves following episodes of ‘cyberbullying’ were already deeply disturbed. Did the abuse finally push them over the edge? It’s possible, maybe even likely; the better question is where were the parents, friends, teachers, and doctors who all should have noticed the depths of these kids’ depression and sought treatment, and removed them from the bad influences in their lives? Literally millions of people every day deal with harassment online; it’s unfortunate, but the number of incidences that have lead to death is minimal. To put this in perspective, more people die by getting struck by lightning or attacked by sharks than due to suicide following online harassment.

Second, Dana, you of all people should understand both the anonymity of the internet and the finite resources of law enforcement. Do we really need to distract our internet specialists from important cybercrime, which they already obviously cannot handle with the resources they have? Do we really need to flood our court system with millions of new complaints of online harassment? Must every forum troll and rude adolescent do hard time? Legislation is not always the best answer to a problem. In this case, personal responsibility – i.e. blocking annoying people on social networks and instant messengers, not frequenting sites which are prone to be abusive or communities where you are clearly not welcome, and complaining to website owners and moderators when you are being harassed is the appropriate response. They are happy to help.

Third of course is the slippery slope of speech restriction. Under this kind of legislation every disagreement becomes potential harassment. Is the heated debate between the creationist and the evolutionist in every forum just debate, or is it one person harassing the other? If so, who is right and who goes to jail for speaking their mind? In the forum flame war, who is the victim and who is the suspect? We will already be half-way down this slippery slope if we allow legislation like this through. If you want to see what that downward slide looks like, have a look at Britain, where peaceful demonstrations can land you in lockdown, where children are being trained in school to monitor their parents private behavior and report offensees (no joke, see, where any action deemed ‘offensive’ or ‘rude’ by the government can get you arrested. They started in the same place with these “protect the children” and “some speech isn’t free speech” arguments and have slid this far down in a decade. Russia underwent and even more rapid transformation to total oppression of dissent in the same span of time, starting with the same concerns and solutions. If you think our government is somehow immune to the dangers that opening this door brings consider how little faith you have that they are immune to any other danger, from socialism to religious oppression, that you have spoken on here in the past.

I beg you reconsider your position here, and let your representatives know what you think before it’s too late.

Comment from Teri November 13, 2009, 11:49 pm

In response to Justen
I am not familiar with the bill spoke of here, but do understand a part of your reply. The internet world is huge and unfortunately some people use it to troll and cause havoc in real people’s life.
Over and over I have heard to monitor my kids, which I do and do believe if all parents did the same, that alone would cutdown on cyberbulling problems.
HOWEVER in a case like 13-year-old Megan Meier’s suicide, where her cyber bully turned out to be another teenage girl’s mother, pretending to be a 16 year old boy. A boy named Josh Evans who lead Megan to believe he thought she was beautiful and very interested in her, until the mean hateful messages sent one evening and ending with “the world would be a better place without you”.
There was no “parent” to monitor her, since she was the parent. Her being the parent is a scary thought in itself. One would naturally assume as a parent she would know better, but evidently she didn’t.
Besides there originally having nothing legit to charge her with and charges pending, then dropped or carried on forever, I was horrified reading various blogs full of mothers who also pretended to be teens for the same or different reasons. All justifying what Lori Drew had done, some justifying it simply because it wasn’t against the law.
There needs to be strict laws, with serious consequences, for any adult proven to have cyber bullied a child, especially if that child ends up killing themselves because of it. Over and over I read that 47 year old Lori Drew AKA 16 year old Josh Evans was simply playing a joke on her daughter’s ex-friend and exercising her right, to her opinion about Megan by using her right to freedom of speech. She simply told her she was worthless, ugly, everyone hated her etc never to go hang herself. It was a joke, Megan’s death was in no way her fault.
I realize there are varying degrees of cyberbulling, various circumstances etc and that it would be impossible to monitor the entire Internet. If they could we wouldn’t hear about so much stolen id and stolen credit card use. But at least if a person gets caught using a stolen credit card there are laws and punishment written to go with that crime. We need the same for the internet, not neccassarily to monitor all online activity, but to have to use for legal grounds in a case like this. Especially after reading of so many parents who use this as a way to track their kids, get the real *in* story or like Lori drew, get revenge for their kids.
The first two reasons I kind of get that the intentions may mean well, but “revenge” I will never understand and in my opinion/using my right to freedom of speech think Lori Drew should have a no contact order with any minor under the age of 18 and be locked up in a Psych ward for the rest of her life!!!

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