Reporting on the latest in Ferguson, Missouri for Tuesday night’s CBS Evening News, CBS News correspondent Vladimir Duthiers interviewed a St. Louis detective on what Missouri state law says regarding the ability of law enforcement to use deadly force. After reading from the law directly, Duthiers opined to the detective that it “[s]ounds to me as if the cops are protected no matter what they do.”
To Duthiers’s comment, Detective and St. Louis County Police Association President Gabe Crocker responded that police officers are not “protected by a blanket policy where they can just shoot people and get away with it,” but emphasized that “I do think the law allows for police officers to use deadly force.” [MP3 audio here; Video below]
People on the Left rarely complain about news coverage by the New York Times, but it took only two words to generate a torrent of criticism -- which is usually reserved for conservative Republicans -- regarding an article that profiled Michael Brown, the young African-American man who was shot and killed by white police officer Darren Wilson on August 9 in Ferguson, Missouri.
In a front-page obituary timed to coincide with Brown's funeral on Monday, John Eligon -- a 31-year-old black reporter for the left-wing newspaper -- stated that the 18-year-old victim spent his “last weeks grappling with problems and promise” but was nevertheless described as “no angel.”
Conservative icon Rush Limbaugh declared during his radio show on Friday that the “mainstream media” was unable to transform “gentle giant” black teenager Michael Brown, who was shot and killed by white police officer Darren Wilson on August 9, into Rodney King -- the black man who became famous for a high-speed pursuit by the police and later asking “Can't we all get along?” 22 years ago -- because “alternative media,” including talk radio, has destroyed “the monopoly of the Drive-By Media.”
That claim was contradicted by Touré Neblett, a co-host of MSNBC's weekday The Cycle program, who charged in Sunday's edition of the Washington Post that black victims of crime become “thuggified” as negative incidents in their pasts are revealed to the public that diminish their standing in America’s “empathy gap.”
Dial MSNBC for Murder . . . The Lean Forward network is the place to go if that's the way you want to hear the death of Michael Brown described. On August 12th, NB'S Ken Shepherd noted that Chris Hayes didn't utter a peep of protest when a Missouri state senator called Brown's death an "execution-style" killing. Three days later on MSNBC, Luke Russert called Brown's death "murder" before catching himself.
It's happened again. On today's Up With Steve Kornacki, guest L. Joy Williams pointedly called the Brown death "murder." Did Kornacki challenge his guest's assertion in any way? Of course not. At the end of her statement, Kornacki blandly posed a question to Williams about poll results. Courageous journalism, Steve! View the video after the jump.
Look no further for an example of why police in Ferguson, Mo., don't trust the media.
USA Today reporter Yamiche Alcindor appeared on MSNBC shortly before midnight on Aug. 18 for an interview with Rachel Maddow on the chaotic situation in Ferguson since the shooting death of an unarmed 18-year-old black man by a white police officer two weeks ago. (Video after the jump)
In the center of CNN.com's front page right now is a headline demanding, "Where's Officer Wilson?" "As Ferguson calmed after nights of protests over the fatal shooting of an unarmed black teen, the question remains: Where's the police officer who pulled the trigger?" a caption below a file photo of Wilson added.
Yes, now that things have calmed down and returned to normal, what's the harm in stoking outrage about a "missing" police officer who hasn't been charged with a crime. Here's how CNN.com's Fatih Karimi and Michael Pearson opened their August 22 story:
You had to know this was coming. The only question was who was going to be the first to do it.
On Tuesday, echoing the Rolling Stones' "Sympathy for the Devil," wherein the devil slyly tells listeners that "it was you and me" who "killed the Kennedys" (making everyone responsible ensures that no one is truly responsible, allowing evil to advance), James Joiner, the Special Projects Editor at Esquire Digital, pointed the finger of guilt for recent events in Ferguson, Missouri at all Americans. He claimed that "we are all complicit" in what has transpired, starting with the shooting death of Michael Brown in an altercation with police on August 9. Execrable excerpts follow the jump (links are in original; bolds and numbered tags are mine):
Ten days after police officer Darren Wilson shot and killed Michael Brown, an 18-year-old African-American, in a suburb of St. Louis, Missouri, black filmmaker Spike Lee added his voice to the tumult over the incident. During Tuesday night's edition of Anderson Cooper 360, he told the CNN anchor: “Something smells bad in Ferguson, and it’s not just tear gas.”
“I do not think you should be killed in this country because allegedly you steal some cigarillos. I don’t think you should be killed in this country if there is marijuana in your system,” Lee told Cooper while referring to Brown. “The people -- not only in Ferguson, but all over this country -- do not trust what is happening. I just think there's a war on the black male, and it’s tearing this country apart." [See video below.]
It's important to remember that, in police shooting cases like the one in Ferguson, Missouri, the initial facts are often wrong. You don't want to end up looking like Rich Lowry, National Review editor, whose March 23, 2012, column on the Trayvon Martin shooting was titled, "Al Sharpton Is Right."
Early accounts are especially unreliable when reporters think they have a white racism story. Stirring up racial hatred is how journalists make up for sending their own kids to lily-white private schools.
On Tuesday, August 19, Governor Jay Nixon (D-Mo.) called for the “vigorous prosecution” of Darren Wilson, the Missouri police officer who shot and killed Michael Brown last week.
Despite the highly charged rhetoric by the state’s Democratic governor, NBC’s Today was the only network morning show to acknowledge Nixon’s comments, giving it a mere 41 seconds on its Wednesday morning broadcast. ABC and CBS’s morning shows ignored the governor’s contentious comments. All three networks failed to cover Governor Nixon’s comments on their Tuesday evening newscasts. [See video below.]