Georgia citizen journalist Nydia Tisdale, who last year won a First Amendment award for fighting for her right to record in public, is now facing five years in prison for recording a Republican political gathering in 2014.
It all started when she was sitting in the same front row as Georgia Governor Nathan Deal when state insurance commissioner Ralph Hudgens made some off-the-cuff remarks about a democratic candidate for U.S. Senate.
“I don’t know why you’re videotaping,” Hudgens then said to her.
Before she knew it, she was asked by a man named Clint Bearden to stop recording or leave. He stated the farm had a no-recording policy, even though there were others in the audience recording.
Then another man sat next to her and said the same thing. Tisdale said she didn’t know who the men were because they provided no names and gave no authoritative identities.
Tisdale refused to stop recording and refused to leave because she had already obtained permission to record (prior to driving 90 miles in order to do so) from Kathy Burt, who is also owner of Burt’s Pumpkin Farm.
I will say this. Public officials in this state are generally not freaked out when someone whips our a camera at some public event. I have seen police officers get bent out of shape.