Great Victory for Christian Coalition of America on Net Neutrality
Christian Coalition of America (CCA) gained an important victory this week when the Obama administration agreed with its stance on "net neutrality", ensuring that organizations such as the Christian Coalition of America could not be discriminated against by massive communications corporations.
Julius Genachowski, the head of the Federal Communications Commission (FCC), plans to propose new regulations which would prevent Internet service providers such as Comcast Corporation, AT&T Inc, and Verizon Communications Inc, from interfering with the free flow of information on the Internet. FCC Chairman Genachowski will announce the proposed rules in a speech today at the Brookings Institution.
CCA had taken the lead amongst conservative groups in a broad coalition of organizations which fought to support net neutrality in Congress. This broad coalition included groups from across the political spectrum - from organizations such as the National Religious Broadcasters to progressive groups such as Moveon.org.
Christian Coalition of America's allies in Congress included the former Republican Chairman of the powerful Judiciary Committee in the U.S. House of Representatives, Congressman James Sensenbrenner from Wisconsin.
Michele Combs, spokesperson for the Christian Coalition of America, has frequently testified on Capitol Hill during the past few years in support of "net neutrality". It has been an issue extremely important to America's grassroots organizations and to those Americans who want to ensure the cable and phone companies controlling access to the Internet will not discriminate against groups like the CCA. In March of last year, Michele Combs testified before a House Judiciary Committee supporting "net neutrality" and before the Senate Commerce Committee. In addition, she testified before the Federal Communications Commission and a House Commerce Committee panel in April of last year in support of the "Internet Freedom Preservation Act of 2008" which, if passed, would have prevented discrimination against CCA and other grassroots groups and would have legislated "net neutrality" on the Internet.
The cable-telephone monopolies were attempting to divide the Internet into a "fast track" and "slow track". Our grassroots, who cannot afford the additional fees, would have had to be on the slow track, which would have meant that many of our websites would have been passed by, because the general public will not have the patience to go on the "slow track".
In addition, if a board member on an internet service provider (cable/telephone monopoly) does not like the positions taken in Christian Coalition of America emails, they could and would have blocked such emails. Corporations, such as Comcast, have been rebuked by the FCC for blocking or delaying some forms of Internet file-sharing, including one such case last year.
Comcast did agree to cease and desist from such practices, but it has been lobbying heavily in Congress to prevent net neutrality legislation from passing.
The FCC is about to provide Americans with a wonderful victory; a victory which ensures that their free speech rights are protected as much as the rights of massive corporations.