CNN anchor Piers Morgan is diverting some of his attention away from his perpetual anti-gun crusade to render his verdict on the trial in which Hispanic George Zimmerman is accused of murdering black teenager Trayvon Martin.
While he says he knows “what a lot of people think,” Morgan has been sharply criticized by the left-leaning Bob Somerby of the Daily Howler, who claims that the liberal British host is “too lazy, too irresponsible to get even his basic facts right.”
On Monday night's edition of Piers Morgan Live, the host stated that “at the end, the idea there is no punishment for the fact that that expense of actions” led to Zimmerman “shooting an unarmed teenager dead seems to me pretty ridiculous.”
Morgan described the “public opinion” on the case by stating that “in the end, an unarmed 17-year-old teenager has been killed. And the idea that the person that did that is able just to walk free, an innocent man guilty of nothing, doesn't seem right.”
As Somerby noted, while Morgan's statement is not “factually false,” it's a “highly selective” view of what happened the night of Feb. 26, 2012.
In the world Morgan describes, there could be no claim of self-defense, no matter what the teenager in question did. Nothing that unarmed teenager did could lead to the finding that the shooting was justified.
Later in his program, Morgan again played fast and loose with the facts:
George Zimmerman ignored advice, got out of his vehicle, said, you know, “f-ing punks, A-holes getting away with it,” marched away, we don't know what happened next.
Apparently, it seems Morgan still believes that Zimmerman was told not to get out of his car. By all accounts, the exchange in question came later. he was already out of his car, following Martin on foot.
Morgan returned to the same subject on Tuesday night's edition of his program:
Here's the point really, is that you can have all this evidence that says, “Look, it looks like Trayvon Martin was on top, et cetera, et cetera.”
But in the end, is it right, do you think -- and I asked this question last night -- that George Zimmerman should be acquitted, allowed to walk free, given that we now know he shot an unarmed teenager? Because that's what it comes down to.
Actually, that's not what this case comes down to. It will be decided on “all this evidence” presented to six female jurors and whether or not they believe Zimmerman is guilty of a crime beyond a reasonable doubt, regardless of what the liberal CNN host thinks or says.
Meanwhile, the Daily Howler also criticized Morgan's Tuesday appearance as a “disaster.”
Put aside the journalistic laziness, the moral squalor, when a person in Morgan’s position persists in misstating such facts. Morgan’s account completely omits a wide range of other facts, claims and evidence.
After stating that Morgan “has one of the emptiest heads on TV,” Somerby stated that the coverage of the Zimmerman trial nevertheless provides a unique opportunity to examine the process by which information is disseminated to the American public:
As the Zimmerman trial proceeds, the corrupted nature of cable news gives us the chance, every night, to see this gruesome process unfold. It’s impossible to conduct a discourse if different groups insist on the right to reinvent the world their own way. Just look around: As corporate cable “news” explodes, that’s the world you live in.
As NewsBusters reported soon after the tragic event, MSNBC aired a deceptively edited clip intended to portray Zimmerman as a racist for calling Trayvon Martin “black” when the entire segment showed that he was actually answering a question from the 911 dispatcher asking if the teenager was “white, black, or Hispanic.”
On Tuesday, hip-hop mogul stated: “Whether George Zimmerman is found innocent or guilty by the jury, I am firm believer that all of us live by karmic law, and he will ultimately be punished for the death of Trayvon, no matter what."
Also on Tuesday, Zimmerman's attorney made a similar statement that his client will never be safe if he's acquitted, a verdict ABC's Dan Abrams predicted would be the result of the trial.
Once again, it seems that having his own weeknight cable news program has made Piers Morgan think he can say or predict anything he wishes, even though his meager ratings prevent him from having much impact on the television audience.
H/T: Johnny Dollar