The Big Talk tackles Britney, Biden and a big loss for public television

CHAMBERSBURG – Every weekday morning on First News, the local – live morning radio information show with Pat Ryan and Michele Jansen features the big talk topics and opinion from local Attorney Clint Barkdoll.

On July 14, topics covered by the Big Talk on First News were the Britney Spears conservatorship, the deadline for kids to repeat last year, gun sales to those under 21, how the media NEVER holds Biden accountable and the loss of state funding for PBS. 

Listen to the full audio here: https://soundcloud.com/newstalk1037fm/14-july-atty-barkdoll#t=0:00

Free Britney! Maybe we really should…

So Britney Spears has been locked into a conservatorship with her father and his lawyers for many years now.

She’s had a whole lot of her life controlled, especially her money.

It all started with her very public breakdown in 2008. Remember the head-shaving? Yeah. She was sent to a psychiatric facility and put on a 5051 hold, which allows someone to be involuntarily detained for 72 hours if he or she is deemed a danger to others or himself or herself.

Ever since then, Britney hasn’t had a whole lot of rights.

The case is going back to court today, even though Britney can’t choose her own lawyer because she would have to go through this conservatorship.

Barkdoll said, “There is some reporting that she may now get to choose the attorney of her choosing. Which is not me. I would be glad to help her on this free Brittney. I’ve said from the beginning and I really sympathize with her, but there must be more to this that the public is not seeing.”

Hearing after hearing says she has to remain in this conservatorship with her father.

Barkdoll said, “This is really extraordinary to have someone of her age and her wealth to be under that kind of protective custody. We can speculate maybe on what’s not being disclosed. There could be any number of reasons they’re doing that, but I think the public is very much only hearing one side of this from this pro-Brittney, free-Brittney movement. It is really taking on a life of its own. These documentaries that have been made. There are lots of people following this that are really supporting her. So we’ll see what a court does with it next.”

Jansen said, “I haven’t looked into this enough to really give a very intelligent opinion…”

Ryan interjected, “Of course you haven’t. Critical Race Theory. Communist China. The southern border.”

Jansen chuckled, “I don’t think this is going to impact the world as much as these other things that we’ve been looking into, but you are hearing this commentary though that these conservatorships that legally, just in general, overall, that there’s something wrong with them. That people really do lose rights. There may be something to really look at legally, in general about these things. I kind of keep hearing that coming from different camps who’ve been looking at this.”

Barkdoll said, “The thing that was just awful in this case is that last hearing when her testimony was made public, she made some comments for example, she wants to have more children. She’s claiming under this conservatorship that isn’t allowed. She is mandated to remain on birth control. She talked about all of this money she made…she’s not allowed to touch the money. Her father and this other team around her have that money and are using that money and that is a problem. There certainly ought to be some accommodation made that someone should not be on that sort of restricted life when those are the sort of things that are being testified to in court. There need to be reforms. I’ve never seen a case where someone is this restricted and maybe it’s just because she is so high profile we’re hearing more about it, but clearly there are problems here on I think all sides of the case.”

You have a little more than 24 hours to get the paperwork to your school district if you want your child to repeat last year

Paperwork to hold a child back a year because of the COVID distance learning that took place last year needs to be in to the school district by close of business tomorrow.

You can find the form here: https://www.education.pa.gov/Schools/safeschools/emergencyplanning/COVID-19/SchoolReopeningGuidance/ReopeningPreKto12/Pages/Student-Grade-Level-Retainment-(Act-66).aspx

You will need to take that form to your school district to get the process going.

Barkdoll said, “It will be interesting to see next week how many local people have opted to do this, how many people around the state have opted to do this. The thinking with the General Assembly and the governor was that we have too many children that slipped through the cracks last year. That this was a lost year for way too many children in Pennsylvania and this is a way to let them reset, have them repeat the year last year and get them back on track. It’ll be interesting when the statistics get released. It probably won’t be until next week that we see how many parents opted to do this.”

Could a law to keep 18 to 21 year olds from purchasing guns be repealed?

A federal law has been on the books since the 1960s that said anyone under 21 cannot legally purchase a handgun in this country.

But they can possess one.

So a 19 year old can’t go into a gun shop and buy a gun, but a parent of said 19 year old can buy the gun, give it to the 19 year old to use and all is well.

Barkdoll said, “This is one of those areas that have been difficult to reconcile legally.”

Well a 4th Circuit Appellate Court yesterday took a stab. A judge said the federal law from the 1960s is unconstitutional.

Barkdoll noted, “The judge said you’re essentially treating 18 to 21 year olds as second class citizens. They have the full constitutional rights as any other adult.”

The decision only applies to the 4th Circuit, which includes Maryland and West Virginia, but not Pennsylvania.

Barkdoll said, “These are then the classic ingredients for a case to go up to the US Supreme Court because you now have conflicting laws on this question around the country.”

The federal government will likely appeal this and it could very well make it to the Supreme Court. If they agree to hear it, it could be a year until it gets to a decision.

Barkdoll pointed out, “If the federal government appeals this, don’t be surprised if you see this decision what’s called stayed, meaning that this decision is suspended while the case remains on appeal so this ruling yesterday only applies to those four or five states within that jurisdiction of the federal court.”

President Biden was in Philadelphia yesterday talking about voting rights and he was more than a little fired up

President Joe Biden spoke to citizens in Old City Philadelphia yesterday about voter rights and identification and comparing it to the Civil War.

Barkdoll said, “He was as fired up yesterday in Philadelphia as I’ve seen him since being in office. After the event he spent another 40 minutes on the rope line with people from the public there continuing this kind of dialogue and nasty kind of commentary about voting rights. What’s interesting about this, where there’s a disconnect I think, almost every public poll you look at, there is vast public support for something like voter ID for example, Democrats and Republicans.”

The Biden administration doesn’t seem to be buying it, though.

Additionally, a number of Democrats have fled the Texas legislature and are pushing for a national voter rights act.

Biden is having lunch today with a large number of US Senators to talk about the Infrastructure Bill, but they also might discuss voting rights, too.

Barkdoll said, “They can’t get voting rights passed unless they would end the filibuster. They need 60 votes. Keep an eye on Joe Manchin. Keep an eye on Kyrsten Sinema from Arizona because if they’re not on board to do it, this is going to be dead on arrival.”

Jansen said, “What bothers me most, this is such propagandizing from the president and the press is not calling it out at all. If you look at what Texas was doing, there’s nothing nearly to the degree of catastrophe he’s putting into this. This is typical though. This is what’s happening. This comes back to this ideology. We are catastrophizing everything today. We’re making everything about race and he is going way overboard and nobody is putting any brakes on this man, except for a few news outlets. You look at what they did with (the voter ID issue). They’re just trying to deal with things that were put in only for the COVID situation. There’s a lot of things with voting that happened because of COVID. Everybody’s acting like those things have been there forever and they’re taking them away. One good point that someone made I heard yesterday, if Democrats don’t vote on this and it would revert back to the pre-2020? It would be far more restrictive than the new laws that they’re trying to make sure uphold rights and prevent cheating. It would actually go back to a harsher way of voting, but nobody cares. Nobody’s looking at those details. He’s just acting like that they are literally standing there with guns, keeping people of color from coming in to vote. This is dangerous for our country and I think it is propaganda to push for some kind of extreme measure, like getting rid of the filibuster or passing this horrible For the People Act.”

Ryan added, “And comparing it to the Civil War and Gettysburg and Antietam and the bloodshed and dead bodies all over the place? He should be ashamed of himself. He’s an absolute AH on this one.”

Jansen said, “And Democrats singing ‘We Shall Overcome.’ Overcome what? You’re the ones violating a Democratic process by leaving the state and not doing your duty as the minority elected body of that state.”

Ryan said, “You didn’t want rights. It’s your own party. You did the longest filibuster to prevent rights for Americans. It’s on the Democrat Party. All the Democrats do is project.”

Barkdoll pointed out, “There is this kind of nefarious theory out there that is all of this just kind of inside strategy to get out the vote? They know these are issues that really motivate the base and you see some of these pundits, these political campaign managers talking about this. They feel that even if these things are not passed, it’s an effective way to motivate a base of voters who typically would not otherwise vote and you do wonder is that the inside baseball here? Do they know these are not things that are going to pass, but the more they can keep the issue out front, get all fired up at a rally about it, keep this into the midterms for next year, do they think it’s a way to squeeze some more people out to vote?  And that may very well be something that’s going on here. Of course they would never admit to that if that is what’s happening.”

Jansen said, “And the media won’t call them out.”

PBS took a hit in the state budget

Pennsylvania has seven Public Broadcasting stations in the state that were collectively receiving $750,000 a year from the state government.

Not anymore.

The new PA state budget has defunded PBS.

Barkdoll said, “They’ll still get their federal subsidies, they’ll still get their grants and private donations, but this is pretty big. Historically they always received some kind of a stipend from the Pennsylvania government and that has gone away. Once they go away, rarely do they come back.”

Ryan pointed out that these were the so-called journalists who were going to put a Scarlet Letter on any legislator who protested the election results in any way. Any time they referenced a Senator or Representative who protested, the story would be sure to include that. Every time.

Additionally, PBS may call it underwriting, but it’s leaning closer and closer to advertising.

Barkdoll said, “Turn on public radio or public television at any given time. It certainly sounds like advertising. It used to be the so and so foundation, but now you see outright commercial entities on there. It might be a pharmaceutical company or some other commercial entity. To me, that’s just like advertising.”

Ryan said, “It’s a terrible money grab on their part. The next one will be getting it out of the federal funding. You want to compete, get out in the real world and throw it down with us.”