Watch: Keene Pumpkin Fest Lady Accuses Journalist of Being ‘Free-Stater,’ Tries to Censor Him

By | October 22, 2014

The weekend drunken
riots
in Keene, New Hampshire, didn’t actually happen at the
annual pumpkin festival. But obviously they’re still going to be a
big deal in a small town of 20,000. Of course, some folks are going
to be more concerned about the reputation of the festival than the
matters at hand. And some folks are going to make fools of
themselves doing so.

That person would be festival organizer Ruth Sterling, who
interrupted the broadcast of public access reporter Jared Goodell
and threatened to shut him down because she apparently didn’t like
him bringing up the rioting. She attempts to grab his microphone,
attempts to block him from the camera and demands to know if
Goodell is a
“Free Stater,”
the term for New Hampshire’s libertarian
Free State Project
efforts. Watch below:

 

Sterling seems a bit dumbstruck at the idea that the media
aren’t there to do as they’re told. She subsequently
defended her censorship efforts
to Boston.com Monday in
language no less silly than her behavior on the air:

“I needed to keep 80,000 people safe. And one self-promoting
punk could help me do that or TRY to impede me from doing that. I
never regret when I try. Last night I was trying. I was not
surrendering to fear, intimidation, threats,” Sterling wrote.

No, she looked like she was surrendering to fear to me. Did she
think the people walking around the pumpkin festival were also
watching Goodell’s coverage at the same time and were going to
start stampeding in a panic?  Goodell took a different
perspective:

“I would say over eight hours [of coverage] it was probably 90
percent about the festival, just talking to the families and kids
with costumes, about the pumpkins, talking to local non-profit
leaders,” Goodell told Boston.com “We talked about the riots in a
safe way because we’re playing to viewers at home and we want to
let the viewers at home know what the safety concerns are.

“Cars were being turned over, fires were being set, a mass
casualty [incident] was announced,” he added. “I’d say we
underreported on the riots.”

(Hat tip to Hit and Run commenter Also Ran)

Category: Liberty
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