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Media Can’t Un-tell Their Ferguson Lies
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When “government officials” talk to the New York Times, as they have been doing in recent days in regard to the August shooting of Michael Brown, they do so strategically.
In this case, the Department of Justice seems to be preparing the public for the likelihood that Ferguson police officer Darren Wilson will not be charged in Brown’s death.
As a case in point, an October 17 Times story not only recounts Wilson’s version of events inside the officer’s vehicle but also squares it up with the forensic evidence.
As Wilson told the story, Brown reached for the gun, and it was fired twice, one shot striking Brown on the hand. In the scuffle, Brown “punched and scratched [Wilson] repeatedly.”
Forensic tests meanwhile showed Brown’s blood on the gun, on Wilson’s clothes, and on the interior door panel.
Having conceded as much, the Times reporters are quick to reassure their readers that Wilson’s testimony “does not explain why, after [Wilson] emerged from his vehicle, he fired at Mr. Brown multiple times.”
After all, the reporters remind us “the most potent imagery” in the incident emerged after Wilson faced off against Brown in the street while Brown, according to some witnesses, “appeared to be surrendering with his hands in the air as he was hit with the fatal gunshots.”
What the reporters do not say is that they and their media colleagues were most responsible for making that imagery potent by refusing to deconstruct it.
Indeed, even in the October 17 article, the Times gives the wildly improbably version of events offered by Brown’s partner in crime, Dorian Johnson, equal weight to Wilson’s.
In Johnson’s version, Wilson reached one arm out the window, grabbed the 6’-4”, 300 pound Brown, trying to choke him and pull him back inside the car window.
The Times calls Johnson’s account “detailed and specific.” What they should call it, like so much of the on-scene testimony, is self-serving and absurd.
It is clear, even when reporting the newly released facts of the case, the Times and other major media outlets prefer the narrative of the innocent black victim and guilty white predator they have been at pains to create and sustain over the years.
Reporters will often bend facts in shocking ways to preserve this narrative. Consider, for instance, the reporting of NBC’s Lisa Bloom in her book-length account of the George Zimmerman case, “Suspicion Nation.”
As NBC’s go-to source on the Zimmerman trial, a case she covered gavel-to-gavel, Bloom embodies the major media ethos, and her book reflects their bias.
Bloom’s thesis is that the State of Florida blew a winnable case. The evidence that the state overlooked, she writes, was “nothing short of astonishing.”
Worse, the state failed to present a comprehensive “theory” about the sequence of events. This Bloom considers its “biggest blunder.”
In Bloom’s imaginative counter-theory, Zimmerman “feared” black men and profiled the seventeen year-old Trayvon Martin for no reason other than his race.
As Bloom tells the story, Zimmerman follows Martin after the officer tells him not to. He confronts Martin. He “grabs or shoves him.” A “frightened” Martin punches Zimmerman. A “tussle” ensues.
It is “not particularly significant” who is on top. Zimmerman pulls the gun, points it at Martin, and continues his “profane insulting rant” for forty seconds during which time Martin screams “aaah” in fear. An angry, panicky Zimmerman shoots and kills Martin.
To make this fantastic theory work, Bloom overlooks major chunks of evidence and makes stunning mistakes on the evidence she does present.
Her treatment of the most important eyewitness, Witness #6, Jonathan Good, is a case in point. On the night of the shooting, Good told Sanford PD investigator Chris Serino:
So I open my door. It was a black man with a black hoodie on top of the other, either a white guy or now I found out I think it was a Hispanic guy with a red sweatshirt on the ground yelling out help! And I tried to tell them, get out of here, you know, stop or whatever, and then one guy on top in the black hoodie was pretty much just throwing down blows on the guy kind of MMA [mixed martial arts]-style.
Investigator Serino reviewed the various 9-1-1 calls the morning after the shooting. On one call, he noted, a male’s voice could be heard yelling “help” or “help me” fourteen times in roughly forty seconds.
“The voice was determined to be that of George Zimmerman who was apparently yelling for help as he was being battered by Trayvon Martin,” Serino reported at the time.
“I was yelling for help but no one would help me,” Zimmerman told the first officer on the scene. Zimmerman said this well before he knew a 9-1-1 call had picked up his screams.
Astonishingly, however, Bloom claims that all evidence “pointed to Trayvon Martin as the screamer.” To make this case Bloom ignores the testimony of Good, of Zimmerman, of Serino, and of the arriving officer, Timothy Smith.
Of all the witnesses to testify at the trial, Good was easily the most coherent and convincing, but Bloom spends only one sentence on him in the entire book and gets everything wrong.
It reads as follows: “Trayvon remained a threat after the shooting, according to Zimmerman, which is why he asked John Good, the first to come outside after the gunshot, ‘to help me.’” (italics added)
Of course, as both Zimmerman and Good reported, Good came out before the shooting. As Good clearly testified, Zimmerman was “yelling out help” while he was being attacked.
Even after the Zimmerman trial, the great majority of African Americans believed the story about the innocent boy with the Skittles the media had been feeding them all along.
After the Wilson decision, a great majority will likely believe what the media have been feeding them about gentle giant Mike Brown the last two months.The media remind black America: forget the black president and the black attorney general, nothing has changed, vote Democratic
Editor's note: Jack Cashill, newest book, "You Lie: The Evasions, Omissions, Fabrications, Frauds and Outright Falsehoods of Barack Obama" is now available for purchase.
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