Even after tax-subsidized NPR’s very slanted coverage of the racial aspect of the George Zimmerman trial, NPR delivered a unanimous verdict on President Obama’s July 19 Trayvon Martin race speech: it was outstanding and political considerations had nothing to do with its timing. On all of NPR’s Friday, Saturday and Sunday shows post-speech, all NPR hosts, NPR reporters, NPR commentators, interviewees and those featured in audio clips saw Obama’s speech the same positive way.
Ordinarily skeptical of political motivations by politicians, NPR’s journalists lapped up the Obama administration’s claim that Obama’s July 19 race speech just happened to be delivered spontaneously when it was. The fact that Detroit’s bankruptcy filing, terrible news for Obama, occurred less than 24 hours earlier, along with the fact that the Zimmerman verdict was a full six days earlier, didn’t raise anyone’s suspicions at NPR. NPR political correspondent Mara Liasson’s explanation for the timing: “they wanted to make sure that the protests were not violent.”
CNN anchor Don Lemon lectured conservative radio host Ben Ferguson for being quick to pan President Obama's Friday address on race, during Saturday's 4 p.m. ET hour of Newsroom.
Lemon -- who has played the race card by twice comparing traditional marriage supporters to segregationists -- told Ferguson that since he's white, he has a "place of privilege" that minorities don't have and therefore can't fully understand the plight of black people in America. [Video below the break. Audio here.]
It seems to me that almost every time President Obama talks publicly about race, he stirs things up rather than calms them down. Whether intentional or not, it's unfortunate — and damaging.
It's difficult to express opinions on race that don't conform to the politically correct narrative, because race baiters are always lying in wait to denounce as a bigot anyone who dissents from their assessment. Indeed, many leftists who call for a national dialogue on race routinely brand conservatives as racists — merely because they are conservative — even when they remain silent on racially sensitive issues.
The July 19 broadcast of ABC’s “What Would You Do?” at first seemed to be devoid of any racial themes that usually plague the overly-contrived ABC "News" show. Yet, they needed to insert a racial element to see if bystanders would stop a would-be thief in broad daylight. A man named Uvall is an actor playing your everyday American commuting to work. He parks his car along the front of New York Panini in Huntington, New York. His car has over $10,000 in valuables, which Kevin, another actor who happens to be a white guy will try to steal. He’s mostly successful. Yet, he’s stopped by a naval officer -- a real person, not an actor -- and placed under a citizen’s arrest. Nevertheless, ABC had to play the race game to see if there’s more to Kevin’s success.
During the second go-around in this scenario, Gabriel replaces Kevin. He’s another actor, and he happens to be black. He’s caught every time, and also placed under citizen’s arrest. Yet, is this racism, or more perceptive bystanders, the folks at ABC ask?
Douglas Brinkley predictably gushed over President Obama on Saturday's CBS This Morning, and hailed the Democrat's Friday speech on the not guilty verdict in the George Zimmerman trial: "It certainly was historic....I think it elevated the Trayvon Martin story, really, to the annals of DayGlo, top-tier history....it was quite memorable." Brinkley later heralded the President as a "constant grief counselor."
Substitute anchors Maurice DuBois and Vinita Nair also gushed over the address, and seconded the liberal historian's praise for Obama: "This was really a historic speech, in the sense that he also got very personal and said, this could have been me 35 years ago." [audio available here; video below the jump]
One would think that a lawyer like Joe Scarborough would refrain himself from making irresponsible statements surrounding the Trayvon Martin case. Unfortunately, it appears as though MSNBC’s pseudo-conservative is incapable of being reasonable, suggesting that in the wake of Trayvon Martin’s death, white potheads are fair game for murder.
Appearing on the July 22 Morning Joe, Scarborough ranted against what he called, “really racially intolerant comments that we've been hearing from across the political spectrum” which to most rational people would bring to mind Scarborough's colleague Al Sharpton. Instead, Scarborough was referring to Sean Hannity. [See video after jump. MP3 audio here.]
Update, July 24: In audio found here at my home blog, Zimmerman attorney Mark O'Mara, in a Tuesday discussion with New York talk show host Steve Malzberg, confirmed the accuracy of the "iced tea myth"-related details in this post and in Bill Whittle's video.
Among the more outrageous aspects of the press's negligent coverage of the circumstances surrounding the Trayvon Martin-George Zimmerman confrontation is its insistence on describing Martin as having bought "Skittles and iced tea" at a convenience store roughly 40 minutes before Zimmerman, as a neighborhood watch volunteer, spotted him.
The drink was not "iced tea." It has been known that the drink wasn't iced tea for well over a year. Yet at least seven press reports since the verdict, up to and including coverage of this past weekend's demonstrations (examples here and here, at the Associated Press the day after the verdict; here; here; here; here; and here), identified "iced tea" as what Martin purchased. The actual identity of the non-caffeinated drink, AriZona Watermelon Fruit Juice Cocktail -- which appears not to contain a single drop of tea, and which the company has in its "juice drinks" category -- is extremely significant, as will be explained after the jump.
The TalkLeft blog noted last night that the American Civil Liberties Union, after encouraging U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder to pursue civil rights charges against George Zimmerman the day after he was acquitted in the death of Trayvon Martin, reversed course just four days later.
Though it's no longer available at its national web site, the Associated Press ran the organization's press release. Various searches at the AP's national web site indicate that there has been no coverage of the organization's reversal. Several center-right blogs have noted the reversal, but no one in the establishment press besides Josh Gerstein at the Politico, where stories the rest of the establishment press would prefer to ignore tend to go and all too often die, has noted it. So did the organization have a change of heart? Or did it attempt to manipulate its media exposure with a politically correct initial press release followed by a legally and constitutionally correct reversal it hopes few will notice?
As NewsBusters has been reporting, the Obama-loving media's gushing and fawning over the President's address Friday concerning race and the George Zimmerman verdict has been nothing less than sick-making.
Potentially the most vomitous remark yet came from New York Times columnist David Brooks who actually said on NBC's Meet the Press Sunday - with a straight face, no less! - it "was a symphony" (video follows with transcript and commentary):
Unlike most of the Obama-loving media, PBS's Tavis Smiley has been deeply critical of the President's comments Friday regarding race and the George Zimmerman verdict.
Smiley continued his criticism on NBC's Meet the Press Sunday saying, "I don't know how he argues he can't lead us in a conversation on this, but he can on gay marriage?" (video follows with transcript and commentary):
If you were wondering whether any liberal media veteran could have made the networks sound less clueless about the reasons for Detroit filing for bankruptcy, one answer was longtime Washington Post foreign correspondent Keith Richburg. In an article on the Post website (but not in the newspaper), Richburg wrote painfully about the demise of his beloved hometown, and how racial polarization and crime and political corruption have destroyed it.
His personal story, including his relatives who remained in the urban blight, offered the most gripping testimony:
Jay-Z and Justin Timberlake dedicated a song to Trayvon Martin during their concert at Yankee Stadium Friday night.
In a video captured by a member of the audience, as the couple began their last song of the evening - "Forever Young" - Jay-Z yelled to the crowd, "Everybody put a cell phone and light it up. Let's light the sky for Trayvon Martin tonight in here":
Syndicated columnist Pat Buchanan had some harsh words for Barack Obama’s address Friday concerning race and the George Zimmerman verdict.
Appearing on PBS’s McLaughlin Group, Buchanan said Obama’s comments were “insidious” adding, “The President has taken sides in what is becoming unfortunately a pretty nasty racial dispute in this country.”
Imagine that FDR, in his first inaugural, instead of rallying Americans with the notion that "the only thing we have to fear is fear itself," had stoked the nation's unease by harping on how bad the Depression was. If Mike Allen had been around in 1933, perhaps he would have defended FDR by writing "there was plenty of unease before the speech, so it's hard to blame the President."
For that is the same approach that the Politico's Allen took in his Playbook this morning in defending President Obama's divisive remarks of yesterday on Trayvon Martin and the Zimmerman trial. Wrote Allen [emphasis added]: "Many conservatives are complaining that the remarks will stoke division and dissension. But there was plenty of that before, so it's hard to blame POTUS." Some might accuse Allen of the soft bigotry of low expectations. More after the jump.
What do you get when an already race-focused news organization staffed and run almost entirely by liberal journalists decides that it needs a full race desk alongside its foreign and crime desks? A full 259 separate on-air pieces (not including web-only ones) discussing Trayvon Martin over a 16-month period — 190 of them (80 percent) mention the word "black.". You also get coverage that furthers the narrative of whites targeting blacks. The theme that Trayvon Martin was unarmed was repeated in 89 stories (35% of the Trayvon stories).
Despite NPR always granting complete deference to a mixed-race President Obama being regarded as black, very few NPR journalists used the words "Hispanic" or "Latino" for Zimmerman. While the words were used in 15% of the the 190 articles that mention Zimmerman, only five of them (3%) called him simply "Hispanic" or "Latino."
On Thursday, limousine liberal Chris Matthews took it upon himself to apologize on behalf of all white people for unspecified transgressions.
“I’ll just tell you one thing,” Matthews said. “And I’m speaking now for all white people, but especially [the ones] who’ve tried to change the last 50 or 60 years. And a lot of them really tried to change, and I’m sorry for this stuff. That’s all I’m saying.”
NBA Hall of Famer Charles Barkley made some stunning comments concerning the George Zimmerman trial Thursday.
Appearing on CNBC’s Closing Bell, Barkley not only said that he agreed with the verdict, but also that when it comes to race, “I don’t think the media has a pure heart…A lot of these people have a hidden agenda” (video follows with transcript and commentary):
Requiring a photo ID to cast a ballot is tantamount to an "assault on black America" that is "unforgettable, and, you could say, unforgivable."
At least according to MSNBC Hardball host Chris Matthews, who opted to close out his July 17 program -- and lead into veteran race-baiter Al Sharpton's PoliticsNation -- with a screed against his native Pennsylvania's voter ID law, the constitutionality of which is being challenged in a state court (video and transcript follow the page break):
In a Tuesday interview, actor and comedian Bill Cosby said that it was impossible to prove George Zimmerman was a racist and that as a result, he was uninterested in trying to discuss the killing of Trayvon Martin in that context.
“Let’s not go into a racial discussion unless we really have something there,” he told radio hosts Domenick Nati and Nate Foutz.
Back when various Tea Party groups were holding rallies across the country on a regular basis, the left-wing press was eager to mischaracterize them as violent, racist or some combination of the two. It didn't matter even if the allegations were true or not (as in the case of Obama Hitler signs or left-wing fakers pretending to be Tea Partiers).
That former attitude is a dramatic contrast to how the media are responding to rioters "protesting" the verdict in the George Zimmerman trial. In an article describing a rally that featured both law-abiding protesters and also violent thugs, the Los Angeles Times was at pains to characterize the proceedings as "peaceful," using the word four separate times.
Welcome to the Obama administration's cringe-inducing non sequitur of the week. On Tuesday, Attorney General Eric Holder continued stoking the fires of racial resentment over a Florida jury's acquittal of George Zimmerman. In an address to NAACP leaders, who are demanding federal intervention, Holder attacked Stand Your Ground self-defense laws.
In a "How can he possibly top this?" move, Eric Holder's Justice Department "is trolling for email tips on the former neighborhood watch volunteer (George Zimmerman) as it weighs a possible federal civil rights case against him."
What other establishment press outlets besides Fox News will cover this? And if they do, which of them (if any) will note the mountain of exculpatory evidence about Zimmerman? First, excerpts from Fox's report by Jake Gibson, followed by the accumulated evidence that Zimmerman more than likely hasn't a racist bone in his body (HT to a frequent tipster, who saw coverage of this on a Fox show earlier today; bolds are mine throughout this post):
On Wednesday's NBC Today, a report by correspondent Kerry Sanders featured a series of sound bites of public figures, all of them liberal, reacting to the acquittal of Trayvon Martin shooter George Zimmerman. Most of the statements focused on using Martin's death to call for the elimination of Stand Your Ground self-defense laws. [Listen to the audio or watch the video after the jump]
Sanders began the slanted segment by highlighting protests against the verdict: "Four days after George Zimmerman was found not guilty of second-degree murder or manslaughter, the number of rallies in memory of 17-year-old Trayvon Martin is growing....In Florida's capitol, dozens of demonstrators peacefully occupied the Governor's office....The Governor wasn't there, but they vow to stay until he gets back."
Norah O'Donnell gushed over Eric Holder on Wednesday's CBS This Morning, trumpeting the supposedly "remarkable" and "very personal" speech that the attorney general gave to the NAACP on Tuesday. O'Donnell also played up how "Holder, the first African-American attorney general...talked very personally about, after Trayvon Martin's death, counseling his own 15-year-old son if he was stopped by police" [audio available here; video below the jump].
The morning newscast spotlighted how the controversial Obama administration figure "sharply criticized the so-called 'stand your ground' laws in Florida and other states", and played 36 seconds of clips from his speech to the organization: