Daily Illuminator

September 25, 2003: "Do Not Call" On Hold

I'm sure you're as thrilled as I am to know that a federal judge in Oklahoma has blocked the implementation of the national "do not call" list. This list would, according to the Direct Marketing Association, have put 2 million telemarketers out of work. Now, granted, that would leave more than 3 million still employed, but it was a noble first step.

At the moment, though, your tax dollars are paying the salary of one Judge Lee West, of Oklahoma, who thinks that telemarketers have a First Amendment right to ring your phone. The learned judge doesn't seem to understand the distinction between the right to speak and the right to force others to listen. But neither telemarketers nor spammers have any right to force their message on an unwilling listener . . . especially when the timing and volume of those messages constitute harassment.

The CNN story had a great reader quote: "No story regarding [Judge] West's decision ... should be considered complete without ... a telephone number where he can be reached during dinner time."
-- Steve Jackson

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