Recently, the National Press Photographers Association objected to Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano’s remarks during a television interview on Fox News. In a nutshell, Napolitano said that the public should be suspicious of photographers and asked citizens to report, “when they see something unusual, if they see, for example, somebody continually taking photographs of a piece of critical infrastructure that doesn’t seem to make any sense.” Read the news story on NPPA.org here.
That’s why I’m going to start wearing these nifty stickers, pens and T-Shirts that will convey to everyone, “I’m a Photographer, Not a Terrorist.”
Photographernotaterrorist.org is a new Web site launched out of the United Kingdom, where street photography is heavily restricted. Here is their full “About” statement:
Photography is under attack. Across the country it that seems anyone with a camera is being targeted as a potential terrorist, whether amateur or professional, whether landscape, architectural or street photographer.
Not only is it corrosive of press freedom but creation of the collective visual history of our country is extinguished by anti-terrorist legislation designed to protect the heritage it prevents us recording.
This campaign is for everyone who values visual imagery, not just photographers.
We must work together now to stop this before photography becomes a part of history rather than a way of recording it.
So why go to their Web site? Well, first I love their artwork. It makes me laugh. As if that weren’t enough, you can download and print off the artwork as a PNG, PDF and EPS. These are “… for you to download, mashup and do unspeakable things to,” according to the site. You can also buy, “I’m a Photographer, not a Terrorist” T-shirts, buttons and coffee mugs. (I might have to get a mug.)
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