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Live from Music Row Tuesday morning on The Tennessee Star Report with Michael Patrick Leahy – broadcast on Nashville’s Talk Radio 98.3 and 1510 WLAC weekdays from 5:00 a.m. to 8:00 a.m. –  host Leahy welcomed public affairs strategist Clint Brewer in the studio.

At the top of the third hour, Leahy and Brewer discuss Middle Tennesse State University’s First Amendment Center and the dynamics of the First Amendment and Paulson’s focus on peaceful assembly.

Leahy added that Paulson declined an invitation to come on The Tennessee Star Report and talk about the Center.

Leahy: We had a story that I was delighted to write about yesterday. There is a First Amendment Center. This is a survivor of the John Seigenthaler Project that’s gone through many interactions. A guy by the name of Ken Paulson heads it up. It’s now based at Middle Tennessee State University. They are launching a major program to advertise and educate people about the First Amendment. That’s a worthy goal.

Brewer: Yes it is. It’s a very worthy goal.

Leahy: And I’ve written a book about the First Amendment. About the Bill of Rights and the Constitution for secondary students. We do a Constitution Bee here in Tennessee every year. This will be our fourth year. And we are going to do a national one here if all the COVID stuff works out.

We’re still working out the details. Well, I thought how fantastic! Let’s invite Ken to be on the program because they want to educate people about the First Amendment. He turned us down. He does not want to come on the program.

Brewer: What was the reason?

Leahy: Wouldn’t say.

Brewer: I know Ken Paulson a little bit. He’s a good man. He has walked the walk for a long time and not just talk the talk when it comes to the First Amendment. (Leahy laughs) I’ll say to you what I’ve said to a lot of journalists over the years now that I’m on the other side of the ball. The First Amendment is not just the freedom to speak it’s also the freedom not to speak.

Leahy: Exactly! And he’s exercising that right with us.

Brewer: I used to have a friend and I won’t mention him by name but he’s one of Nashville’s better reporters and he used to get all over me because I wouldn’t provide him a commissioner or some state official when I was in the administration that he wanted to talk to. And I would say hey look. I’m not infringing on your First Amendment rights but by them deciding to exercise theirs in the negative rather than the positive.

Leahy: Here’s the problem with that. The First Amendment Center based in Middle Tennessee State University their stated objective is to educate the public on the First Amendment.

Brewer: Sure.

Leahy: We have a forum here at The Tennessee Star and at The Tennessee Star Report. The public is out there listening to us. Our ratings are up, up, up, up!

Brewer: Sure.

Leahy: So it seems to me to be inconsistent with the mission of the Middle Tennessee State First Amendment Center for the director of it not to take up an opportunity, free. (Chuckles) We are not charging anything to come on and talk about the importance of the First Amendment.

Brewer: Everybody is different. My political views and my personal views are, you and I aren’t in 100 percent lockstep. We actually argue a lot on the show. (Chuckles)

Leahy: We have disagreements like gentlemen.

Brewer: We have disagreements, but I could go on almost any show whether it’s left or right. I think it’s people’s comfort level. I can’t really diagnose what the problem is. But you do have an audience and I think certainly anybody when you take the opportunity to go on this show and get the word out.

Leahy: I’ll tell you what my suspicion is.

Brewer: I bet I know what your suspicion is Mike. (Leahy laughs)

Leahy: He doesn’t like us because we are originalists and conservatives. He doesn’t want to share his views or have them challenged. Which I think they would be. You have to look at the site. He’s really big on the right to peaceably assemble which is great. But I think he’s tying that into the George Floyd protests. I think the problem there is going to be that I would probably point out, there’s a difference between rioting and peaceful assembly.

Brewer: There’s always a difference right?

Leahy: Ken Paulson, come on in. We’ll be nice to you. Clint will vouch for us.

Brewer: I will vouch for both of you.

Leahy: Ken Paulson, come on!

Listen to the full third hour here:

– – –

Tune in weekdays from 5:00 – 8:00 a.m. to the Tennessee Star Report with Michael Patrick Leahy on Talk Radio 98.3 FM WLAC 1510. Listen online at iHeart Radio.







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Tags: clint brewer first amendment center ken paulson michael patrick leahy mtsu radio

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Dear Abby: I dont want my grandchild learning to speak like her mother does

DEAR ABBY: Our family and extended family are all highly educated individuals with advanced degrees. My son’s wife didn’t go to college, and while she is genuinely nice, she butchers the English language.

Jeanne Phillips 

My granddaughter will be learning to talk soon, and I wonder what’s the best way to approach the situation.

I don’t want to offend my daughter-in-law, but I also don’t want my granddaughter learning improper grammar.

What are your suggestions on how to handle this problem?


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DEAR UNSURE: Because your family and extended family are well-educated and hold advanced degrees, the more time your grandchild spends with all of you, the better her chances of learning proper grammar.

Do not talk “baby talk” with her. Read to her and give her books as gifts. If her mother reads them to her daughter, they both may have a better chance of learning good grammar.

Being around her well-educated father will also help, and once she’s in school, it will be reinforced.

The only thing you should not do is say anything that will make your son’s wife self-conscious about her upbringing because if you do, you may be seeing a lot less of that little family.

DEAR ABBY: I have been in a relationship with the same man for 15 years. For the last six, we have been living together.

He’s a machinist who owns his own business and works strict hours of 8 a.m. to 5 p.m., Monday-Friday. Sometimes he locks his doors at 5 and works an hour or two later, but he doesn’t call to let me know he is working late.

I have told him calling is common courtesy.  Sometimes he does it, but more often he does not. He thinks it’s “ridiculous” that I would wonder where he is, and if I want to know, I can call his shop.

Last Saturday morning he was up at 6 a.m. and told me he needed to drive 100 miles north of here to look at a “project” for a customer to see if he can fix it. When I asked what the project was, he said he didn’t know. This guy is someone he has recently started a friendship with. It seemed odd that he wouldn’t let me go along for the ride. He said he’d have his phone on him, and I could call anytime to see where he was.

When I didn’t hear from him all day, I started calling around 7 p.m. and three times after that, but he didn’t pick up. He pulled back into our driveway around 10 p.m. and told me he was helping the guy move cows, and he would have called me on the way home but his phone died.

I’m upset. He had dinner with them, and they have a landline he could have used. I told him how hurt I was and that I feel disrespected.

He says he deserved a day to himself. He thinks I’m being ridiculous. Am I? Do I not deserve a phone call?


DEAR WAITING: You are not ridiculous. It was thoughtless of him not to call, but you said it doesn’t happen all the time.

You are his lady friend, not his keeper. If he needs a day to himself, it might benefit your relationship to cut him some slack. And when it happens again, schedule something fun for yourself so you aren’t sitting by the phone.

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Dear Abby is written by Abigail Van Buren, also known as Jeanne Phillips, and was founded by her mother, Pauline Phillips. Contact Dear Abby at or P.O. Box 69440, Los Angeles, CA 90069.

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