AP Gives Platform to Racist Hate Group in Jena Case

There was a time when professional journalists were driven toward their profession out of a desire to protect the interests of the public through thoughtful and informative information gathering and reporting. It was an honorable job in a profession that was kept on course by a civic responsibility and a "journalistic code of ethics". This concept has been around for so long that you will often hear the phrase repeated in schools and newspapers.

The Associated Press managing editors even went to the trouble of publishing a laughable statement of Ethical Principles that lists responsibility, integrity and independence as their guiding standards.

The good newspaper is fair, accurate, honest, responsible, independent and decent. Truth is its guiding principle.

It avoids practices that would conflict with the ability to report and present news in a fair, accurate and unbiased manner.

No single case of reporting undermines that code of ethics more blatantly than the institutional bias surrounding the case of 6 black teenagers who are on trial for the beating of a white teen. Yes, I know the incident has been given the catchy moniker of "Jena 6" by race hustlers and political opportunists but I refuse to play that game. Why not call it the "Jena 7" or the even "Jena 1" in an effort to remember the one person that was violently assaulted in this case? The mainstream media has been feeding into this frenzy out of laziness, bias and lack of adherence to professional standards for some months now.

A simple side note in the case is that 6 black teens jumped and beat a white teen into bloody unconsciousness during a gang land style kick fest on school grounds. An allegedly premeditated act that should be considered the focus of most reports has now fallen by the wayside in preference to the illogical and misleading ramblings of those who are using the incident to fan the flames of racial unrest.

Yesterday the AP piled on in that tradition by giving an often described hate group called the "New Black Panther Party for Self Defense" (NBPP) a platform to spread more lies in the case.

A group called the New Black Panther Party for Self Defense now says it is organizing patrols in Jena to protect the "Jena Six" and their families from white supremacists who have threatened them.

The New Black Panthers site claims Jena police and the LaSalle Parish Sheriff's Office had announced they would not protect the six teenagers. Sheriff Carl Smith disputed that Wednesday, saying he had put extra officers on duty and was getting help from federal officers and Louisiana State Police.

Quite frankly this is a load of crap. The police and feds are working overtime to protect all sides in this case, most recently responding to disgusting white supremacist hate groups that have reportedly published the names and addresses of the 6 defendants. Yet there is little coverage of the fact that the NBPP is now patrolling the town as some sort of uniformed vigilante police squad. I would consider that just as threatening if not more dangerous than a web site posted by some sick white supremacist person or group. The AP, obviously not one to worry too much about reporting the truth, should be held accountable if the NBPP succeeds in beating down the "white crackers" in some sort of half baked vigilante invasion.

The NBPP is an offshoot of the Nation of Islam that sees revolution as the one way to further their cause. For those readers that aren't convinced that this means hate filled violence you need look no further than the liberal Southern Poverty Law Center who consider the New Black Panther Party to be a racist hate filled group.

According to sources listed in Wikipedia members of the NBPP have referred to Jews as "bloodsucking Jews" while advocating the killing of white "crackers"

The NBPP is considered by the Southern Poverty Law Center to be a black racist hate group, and even many of the mildest critics of the organization seem to believe that, at the very least, the NBPP's provocative brand of black nationalism undermines other civil rights efforts. Members have referred to "bloodsucking Jews", and Khalid Abdul Muhammad "has blamed slavery and even the Holocaust on the 'hooked-nose, bagel-eating, lox-eating, perpetrating-a-fraud, so-called Jew'." [5], [6], [7] The Southern Poverty Law Center is also an intense NBPP critic, as NBPP members have stated sympathy or understanding of Kamau Kambon's advocacy of the racial genocide of whites on Hannity & Colmes, and Khalid Abdul Muhammad has stated that "there are no good crackers, and if you find one, kill him before he changes." [8], [9], [10]

Yet for some reason the AP has no problem giving this group a platform to spread their racist version of events.

What's worse than this latest incident of completely incompetent reporting is that it is just one report in thousands of lopsided ill informed reports that have made their way into newspapers and television rooms across the nation. The press is not so much reporting on the case as they are acting as advocates for the perpetrators of violence awaiting trial.

Mary Mitchell of the Chicago Sun Times even used her platform in that paper as a columnist to raise money for the defendants using the misleading byline, Black teens could get prison while whites got suspensions. These cases aren't even related as they happened months apart, only one is a criminal offense and the two incidents involved different teens. This is just one article in a series of articles by Mary Mitchell.

While the AP and most other MSM outlets mention the loosely connected tree/noose incident almost without exception they fail to mention some other facts that are very relevant to the case at hand.

First and foremost the white student, Justin Barker, was jumped by six black students outside the gym on school where he was hit in the back or head and rendered unconscious before the gang of black teens proceeded to kick Barker in the stomach, back and face. So when you see reports that vent outrage that someone could be originally charged for attempted murder using “shoes” as a weapon (imagine that, shoes) keep in mind what they were doing with those shoes. They were wearing them while kicking an unconscious white teen in the head. And yes, I said gang, that's what we call it when a group of people get together in a premeditated act of violence.

If there is any place in this country that should be protected from violent crime it is the nations' schools. That fact alone should merit some attention when others try to draw some sort of comparison to other loosely connected incidents that are being used to excuse the beating of a white kid.

Second, Mychal Bell, the person that Hillary Clinton applauded through the AP for having a new chance at freedom was still in jail for a reason; he has a prior criminal record that some reports characterized as violent. Thus his bail was high because of past arrests.

Three months prior to that attack, Bell committed two violent crimes while on probation for a Christmas Day battery in 2005, according to testimony. Later that same week, he led the Jena Giants to a shutout victory in a football game against the Buckeye Panthers.

Bell was adjudicated — the juvenile equivalent to a conviction — of battery on Sept. 2 and criminal damage to property on Sept. 3, said Cynthia Bradford, LaSalle Parish deputy clerk.

A few days later, on Sept. 8, Bell rushed 12 times for 108 yards and scored three touchdowns — one of the best performances of the year for the standout athlete.

Imagine that, a Presidential Candidate is hailed by the mainstream media for supporting a group of teens that beat a white teen senseless not to mention the fact that she is commenting on a case that hasn't even made its way through the courts. Let's imagine these circumstances in reverse in both race and party affiliation and ponder what the mainstream media reaction might be. Double standard? You decide.

There are many facts in this case and other incidents in LaSalle Parish that have been ignored or misreported for a myriad of reasons, all political and all shameful. Yet this is but one small example of the mainstream media's uneven coverage of an incident that magically becomes a celebrity cause (read liberal) while other much more egregious and worrisome cases go largely ignored. The murders of Hugh Christopher Newsom and his 21 year old girlfriend Channon Christian is the most recent example that comes to mind. The national press was actually scooped by Wikipedia and many bloggers before they grudgingly picked it up using the excuse that the case was a local incident in explaining their lack of interest. The same goes for under reported black on black crimes such as the Haitian immigrant that was gang raped by up to ten other attackers while her 12 year old son was beaten before the mother was forced to perform oral sex on him. These cases are true cases that should spark national interest yet the case of the Jena 6 is the premier example of injustice in the press. Why?

In all cases we need to look at them on an individual basis and determine if they are part of trend in racism or part of an effort to over exaggerate their importance on a national stage. I mention the two cases above as examples of press bias not because of the specifics of the case, but rather because of their lack of importance within the confines of the MSM discussion at a national level. Black on black crime is truly a threat to the African American community, every bit as much as other cases of racial discrimination. But this isn't a one way street. The same goes for all race related violence no matter what the color of the people involved. On this level the press fails.

All things considered you have to wonder what is going through the minds of people running these press rooms. It takes a lot of ignorance to give a platform to a racist black supremacist group in a charged up atmosphere such as the one surrounding Mychal Bell and his 5 co-defendants. The AP and other outlets in the mainstream media are doing much more than reporting on the case; they have blatantly immersed themselves into one side of the case and thus made themselves part of the problem.

Terry Trippany is the editor and publisher at Webloggin