In a census that is normally about jailed journalists in oppressive countries such as Turkey, Iran and China, the unlawful detention of American journalist Roger Shuler in the U.S. is truly a disgrace to our country and shows just have far we have sunk as a nation. Imprisoned for speaking out about corruption in America and Alabama at the highest levels, Shuler is making worldwide news in a variety of media venues because it is so uncommon for an American to make this list. Per the CPJ, Shuler is the only journalist unlawfully jailed in the Americas on a list of 211 journalists from around the globe.
In another important news development, Roger Shuler's first amendment case was cited in an article featured on the AlterNet website Dec. 25. The article was written by Nicole Flatow of ThinkProgress. Here is a link to the AlterNet article: 10 Most Appalling Failures of the American Justice System This Year.
In her AlterNet article Ms. Flatow writes, "Every year, stories emerge that serve as a reminder that the American system of justice means injustice for too many, with some receiving little or no punishment for egregious offenses, while others receive harsh or faulty punishment for much less. Here are some of the worst injustices of 2013."
Flatow goes on to cite Roger Shuler's case as number one on her list:
"1. An Alabama blogger is still sitting in a jail cell for exercising his First Amendment rights
Blogger Roger Shuler drew the ire of the powers that be when he continued to write about the alleged extramarital affair of a prominent lawyer rumored to be running for Congress. The lawyer and son of former Alabama governor Bob Riley, Robert Riley, Jr., won a temporary restraining order that prohibited Shuler from writing anything about Riley’s alleged extramarital affair and other related stories. The order itself was almost certainly a violation of First Amendment law. But Alabama officials took the dispute a step further when they pursued him for a traffic stop and arrested him for contempt. In spite of advocacy from the ACLU and others, Shuler has now been in a jail cell for two months for his journalism."According to AlterNet website,"Nicole Flatow is the Deputy Editor of ThinkProgress Justice. Previously, she was Associate Director of Communications for the American Constitution Society. Nicole has also worked for several legal and general circulation newspapers, including The Daily Record and The New York Law Journal, and was a legal fellow at Bread for the City, where she represented low-income D.C. residents in housing and public benefits matters. She received her J.D. from the University of Virginia School of Law, and her B.A. in Philosophy, Politics and Law from Binghamton University, where she was editor in chief of her campus newspaper."