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National Review v. Mann Update, a Final Appeal, and Admitting We Owe Our Independence to Bold Speech

The Supreme Court announced today a bunch of denials for cert petitions. Ours, first submitted in May in our National Review v. Mann battle to protect free speech, was not on that list. That’s good news. The next date for such SCOTUS announcements in this Friday. This case’s fate may be known then.

We delayed Sunday’s formal end of our Fall 2019 Webathon because the possible announcement was just 48 hours away. We’ll end our appealing today on this note: No bad news is good news, we are still in the game, and the prospect of NR having its day — in the proper court — seems a little brighter. Costly, but brighter.

The stamp pictured here — from 1973, issued as the Bicentennial approached: it’s known as the “Pamphleteer” — seems a fitting image as to what NR’s case represents at its core. The very thing to which we Americans owe our nationhood is free speech, and its exercise through profound words spoken boldly and written powerfully and disseminated broadly. That is what is under concerted attack in this legal matter, brought against us by Penn State professor Michael Mann.

National Review is fighting back, aggressively, thanks to the help of some dedicated conservative readers. And we will never stop fighting, especially with you alongside us on the front lines, atop the ramparts, at the barricades.

Will you join us there? We appeal for your camaraderie this one final time.

Why should you? Because this case should be of immense concern. National Review v. Mann has lingered in a D.C. court that is ready to allow free speech to be determined by a dozen jurors from this very liberal, strategically selected location. A dozen people empowered to decide whether NR was wrong to express this or that particular opinion. Today, NR. Tomorrow? Tomorrow is when another jury sits in judgment over your opinion. And you actually believed that free speech is a right that’s unalienable!

So, we are thrilled that we persist in the Supreme Court mix, and are prayerful that the Justices will accept our cert petition. And we expect to prevail and put an end to this assault on liberty. But it will be a costly endeavor. True, much will be paid by our insurer, but much will be “out of pocket.” We could use help there.

Prior to this final day of the Fall 2019 Webathon, 2,345 good people donated $296,920.26 to NR, for its legal case and for broader needs. We hope to raise an additional $28,080 by midnight tonight (our webathon goal being $325,000).

Folks, this case is well into its seventh year. Michael Mann’s undertaking is a bald assault on the First Amendment, on NR’s right to speak boldly about things which require bold talk, and on your right, yes, your right, to fully enjoy the blessing of liberty, the one that entitles you to free speech, even if that speech angers a multiculturalist, offends a social justice warrior, or triggers a college snowflake.

Imagine if these types had been around in 1776! They would have harassed and fought the Founders for declaring some rights to be unalienable. Let’s face it: America owes its independence to the written word, printed on paper, distributed to the populace, and making the powerful case for what Abraham Lincoln would one day call “a new nation, conceived in liberty.”

Our cause is just. Our needs are real. Your obligation is nil. But we ask anyway, this one last time, knowing that many of you are eager to be counted among the happy few members of a conservative band of brothers and sisters dedicated to seeing National Review survive and thrive. To see it prevail in this case. To see our First Amendment emerge robust and intact.

Help us reach our goal. We are asking for $28,080 by midnight. If you have already helped, many thanks. If you have not, please do give here. And if that beautiful 8-cent stamp has you thinking postal, make a check payable to “National Review” and send it to National Review, ATTN: 2019 Fall Webathon, 19 West 44th Street, Suite 1701, New York, NY 10036. Whatever you decide, may God’s blessings be on you and yours and on the freedoms we enjoy, which we will enjoy as long as the determined enemies of liberty are kept from prevailing. Today, this year, in a decade, in our jubilee (2056!) – with your continued help, NR will be around to keep them from that.


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