After you read this kid’s story, you’ll think twice about what you post on Facebook. (And that’s the problem.)
Cammy Dee Facebook Fan Page:
Oh, and he’s been locked up without bail for weeks — facing terrorism charges and 20 years in prison — all for something he posted on Facebook.
On May 1st, Cam was skipping school and messing around online. He posted some lyrics that included a vague reference to the Boston Marathon Bombing and called the Whitehouse a “federal house of horror.” Shortly after that he was arrested and charged with Communicating a Terrorist Threat, a felony that carries 20 years in prison.
The post contained no specific threat of violence against any person or group of people, and in the context of the rest of the lyrics and Cams’ rap persona, it was clearly nothing more than a metaphor. A search of Cam’s house found NO evidence that he was planning any violence, but a judge still ordered him held without bail for the next 3 months, pending trial.
Held without bail? For writing a rap song?
A search of Cam’s house found no explosives, weapons, or ANY evidence that he was planning anything other than becoming the next Eminem.
Take a minute to watch the video of one of Cam’s songs to the left, and decide for yourself whether you think he’s a threat to public safety, or just a teenager speaking his mind.
Cam is locked up right now and he needs your help. Civil liberties groups haven’t jumped in to help. The judge has shown severe bias already. Cam’s best shot at justice is to make sure that Authorities in this small town know that the rest of the country is watching, and that we won’t let them set a precedent of arresting teenagers for angsty lyrics.
Slim chance of a fair trial.
It’s not a surprise that the judge in the case felt pressure to come down hard on Cam, since the local media has been quick to sensationalize the story and demonize a harmless teenager.
Before charges were even formally filed, local newspapers were already posting pictures from Cam’s facebook and pointing to “disturbing” posts like “Fuck politics. Fuck Obama. Fuck the government!” and “satanic” imagery (like some image from a metal band’s poster.) All of this is free speech that is 100% protected by the 1st Amendment.
But Fox News went so far as to say that Cam’s facebook profile had images that they “couldn’t show on TV.” They and other media outlets frequently and intentionally printed only a small section of the lyrics that Cam was arrested for allegedly writing, and took them out of context to make rap metaphors sound like a real threat.
The media printed:
“(Expletive) a boston bominb wait till u see the (expletive) I do, I’ma be famous”
The actual line is:
“(Expletive) a boston bominb wait till u see the (expletive) I do, I’ma be famous rapping”
Notice something? The context completely changes the meaning of the line. Suddenly something that sounds like a threat of violence is clearly just bragging about how good Cammy Dee is going to be in the rap game. Last we checked, teenage dreams of grandeur were not a crime.
Here’s the full text according to techdirt of the lyrics Cam posted that are in question.
Massachusetts Law is pretty clear about what constitutes a “terroristic threat”. The statement has to claim that there is a weapon or a bomb, and/or threaten a specific place or location with the intent of causing disruption. Cam comparing his rap aspirations with the amount of media coverage tragedy in Boston got doesn’t even come close.
The Methuen Chief of Police even stated: “I do want to make clear he did not make a specific threat against the school or any particular individuals…”
Cam should be released immediately unless the D.A. can produce some additional evidence as to why he is a threat to anyone.
Cam may not be your favorite rapper. You may not like anything he has to say. But what’s important here is that we defend our right to speak our mind online without fear of the government coming down on us. Methuen is a small town, but if we get them to drop this case, it would be a big victory for free speech. Make sure you sign the petition, and then use the sharing buttons to spread the word to everyone you know.
- Teen Methuen rapper held without bail for Facebook bomb threat (bostonherald.com)
- Friend: Rapper’s ‘anger built up’ (bostonherald.com)
- Teen Arrested After Rant on Facebook About Bombings (newser.com)
- High School Rapper Arrested and Facing Terrorism Charges For Rap About Boston Marathon Bombing (alternet.org)
- Mass. Teen Accused of Making Terrorist Threats, Faces 20 Years in Prison (theblaze.com)
- Son of Zero Tolerance (simplejustice.us)
- Infowars: Post-Boston: Now You Have to Prove You’re Not a Terrorist (politicalcrazyness.tumblr.com)
- When Does Caution Become Paranoia? (mbman.wordpress.com)
- Post-Boston: Now You Have to Prove You’re Not a Terrorist (dprogram.net)