Attorney General John Ashcroft
United States of America

Dear Mr. Ashcroft:

As an American citizen, I cherish the freedom of speech and the freedom of religion guaranteed by the First Amendment of the Constitution of the United States of America.

Mr. Ashcroft, my constitutional rights are being threatened by the proposed merger of Echo Star and Direct TV which is now pending before the Justice Department.

As an American and a Christian I respectfully request that the merger between Echo Star and Direct TV be stopped for the following reasons:

1. Echo Star has fought hard in court against the laws that insure religious broadcaster's access to satellite television. If Echo Star wins this fight, religious broadcasters will not be able to reach satellite viewers.
2. In addition, Echo Star announced its intention to drop the ABC Family channel, claiming it doesn't have room on its satellites. This is difficult to believe coming from a company that has a half dozen pornographic channels on its TV service.
3. In rural area, and other parts of the country not reached by cable, TV viewers would no longer have a choice between two providers of satellite TV, as they do today. A monopoly would dramatically affect the availability of religious programming in every rural area in America.
4. Echo Star has fought against the "must carry' law in court. The "must carry" law states that any Christian television station in any city "must be carried" on satellite and cable television. If you watch Christian television over satellite or cable TV right now, Echo Star wants that privilege revoked.

Mr. Ashcroft, I ask you again…stop this merger. It's not good for America. It's not good for people of faith.

As an American and a Christian we respectfully request that the merger between Echo Star and Direct TV be stopped.

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The Stop the Echo Star and Direct TV Merger petition to Attorney General John Ashcroft was written by Brenda Cooper and is in the category Religion at GoPetition.