Telemundo’s anti-second amendment slant was patently evident in its nightly news coverage of a pro-gun control rally in Chicago, led by House Democrats and their allies in the Windy City.
All of the talking heads in the report, including Telemundo correspondent Rubén Pereida, made the case for gun control. There were no dissenting points of view. The report used the violence in Chicago, as well as the terrorist attack in Orlando, as reasons why guns need more and more regulation from Congress.
RUBÉN PEREIDA, CORRESPONDENT, TELEMUNDO: In this memorial, in a suburb of Chicago, remembers those who died by firearms. They’re mostly young, as is with the case of Anthony Díaz who was 13 years old, Adrián Soto, 17, and José Suiza, 16. It is estimated that so far this year nearly 2,000 people have been shot in this city. Of these more than 200 have died. A reality that is repeated throughout the United States.
Completely unmentioned in the report was the origin of the wave of shooting deaths in Chicago: the rampant gang problem that has been dragging on for years. With the violence not held back at all by Chicago’s already tough gun laws, the narrow focus of the report on guns carelessly tossed out the bigger and much more complicated story of gang violence in Chicago.
Less than two months ago, Chicago Police Superintendent Eddie Johnson said that the Chicago Police Department knows many of the gang bangers who commit these murders (and many of the victims as well), saying that they "cycle through the criminal justice system.”
As reported by the Chicago Tribune, the Chicago Police Chief saved his harshest criticism for a criminal justice system that he said isn't putting away the city's most dangerous offenders for long enough periods. "Until we have real truth in sentencing and hold these offenders accountable, this will be the unfortunate reality in the city of Chicago," he said of the violence.
Instead of only focusing on the tools of violence, what cries out for media consideration, public debate and action is that banning guns does nothing to address the reality behind criminal gang violence across America. In cities like Chicago, gun control laws that are repeatedly pushed as the solution often only end up ensuring that law-abiding citizens are easy targets for ruthless criminals, and also distract attention away from addressing the crumbling neighborhoods, failing schools and chronic unemployment that continue to plague Chicago and other major U.S. cities.
Below is the transcript of the referenced report, which aired on the June 29, 2016 edition of Noticiero Telemundo.
6:38:11 PM - 6:40:19 PM EST | 2 MIN 8 SEC
LUIS CARLOS VELEZ, ANCHOR, TELEMUNDO: Hundreds of people today took to the streets in what they called a "Day of Action" to stop violence with firearms. Protesters said the issue is already a public health crisis, and that according to statistics, nearly 90 people die every day in shootouts. So they are demanding that Congress vote for a stricter control on arms sales. Ruben Pereida explains it to us.
RUBÉN PEREIDA, CORRESPONDENT, TELEMUNDO: Scenes like these are part of everyday life in the communities of Chicago, one of the cities with the highest rates of violence by firearms in the nation.
SUSANA MENDOZA, CITY CLERK OF CHICAGO: The cries heard after what happened in Orlando contrast with the silence that is heard here in Chicago with the death toll already in a month, last month, of more than 60 dead.
RUBÉN PEREIDA, CORRESPONDENT, TELEMUNDO: This memorial, in a suburb of Chicago, remembers those who died by firearms. They’re mostly young, as is with the case of Anthony Díaz who was 13 years old, Adrián Soto, 17, and José Suiza, 16. It is estimated that so far this year nearly 2,000 people have been shot in this city. Of these more than 200 have died. A reality that is repeated throughout the United States. According to national data, nearly 300 people are shot, and 90 are killed almost daily.
MARÍA PIKE, MOTHER OF SLAIN YOUTH: It breaks my heart every day. But this was the country that my son was born in, and this is the country where my son died.
RUBÉN PEREIDA, CORRESPONDENT, TELEMUNDO: Nearly four years ago, her son Ricky was gunned down. María today joined the national call for Congress to vote for stricter laws to prevent weapons from reaching people like Omar Mateen, the murderer of the slaughter in Orlando, and the others, who every day cause deaths and sorrow in communities around the US.
CONGRESSOWMAN ROBIN KELLY (D-IL): [in English] Nothing! ...
RUBÉN PEREIDA, CORRESPONDENT, TELEMUNDO: "Nothing has been done in Congress to stop deaths from firearms," protested the representative Robin Kelly. That is why now she expects the public, and especially people who have lost loved ones like María Pike, to achieve stricter rules in the sales of firearms.
MARÍA PIKE, MOTHER OF SLAIN CHILD: We have to change this. I want to die in peace. I want to die and see my son, and when I see him that my son tells me, "You did it well, Mommy."