Friday, July 20, 2012

In wake of Aurora tragedy, ABC News commits journalistic atrocity

image Today’s “Journalism:” Never let the facts of the story interfere with advancing the liberal agenda.

Ladies and gentlemen, if you wondered whether you could no longer trust major media outlets to practice responsible journalism in reporting the news, ABC’s atrocious coverage of the theater shooting in Aurora, Colorado should close the deal for you.

By now, you’ve likely heard that a 24-year old white male named James Holmes walked into a crowded movie theater in Aurora armed to the teeth and started shooting.

Victims ranged from a three month old infant to adults, including active duty members of the military.

Just as with the Times Square bomber, the Gabrielle Giffords shooting and the Alabama-Huntsville shooting, the media instantly thought “this must be the action of some deranged Tea Party member upset over Obamacare” and sought to find evidence of same.


ABC’s George Stephanopoulos and Brian Ross thought they had it:

Stephanopoulos: I'm going to go to Brian Ross. You've been investigating the background of Jim Holmes here. You found something that might be significant. 

Ross: There's a Jim Holmes of Aurora, Colorado, page on the Colorado Tea party site as well, talking about him joining the Tea Party last year. Now, we don't know if this is the same Jim Holmes. But it's Jim Holmes of Aurora, Colorado. 

Stephanopoulos: Okay, we'll keep looking at that. Brian Ross, thanks very much.

As it turns out, the name “James Holmes” is pretty damned common in Aurora, Colorado and the shooter James Holmes is not Tea Partier James Holmes, who happens to be a 50-something Hispanic conservative.

By any standard, this is unacceptable. ABC later retracted the connection and issued an apology for “disseminating that information before it was properly vetted,” but the bell cannot be unrung.

Falsely connecting the shooting to a political activist should be enough to have Stephanopoulos and Ross removed from the air, along with their producers, directors and anyone else responsible for maintaining standards of professional journalism. But there is an aggravating factor at work that should completely end any debate over the matter: ABC News’ first instinct in learning the shooter’s name was to find evidence—however flimsy—that James Holmes was a crazy, angry white male activist in that awful, violent and racist Tea Party movement.

UPDATE: A reader emails this observation: “Another aggravating factor is that ABC could have put the older James Holmes in considerable personal danger. There are a lot of angry people out there who wouldn’t think twice of a little vigilante justice.” Well said.

ABC News was never interested in learning or communicating the truth about Holmes’ background. They were only interested in telling the viewing audience that these are the kinds of people opposed to the Obama Regime and its statist agenda. Their message: These people are so deranged, so obsessed with this regime that they start shooting in crowded theaters and blowing up tourist attractions.

You are reading a website with more credibility than any of the three major over-the-air broadcast news networks.

This website practices a code of ethics that has been trampled upon by a horribly biased, grossly incompetent and wholly apathetic media apparatus.

Let that sink in, for a moment. 

If ABC doesn’t fire these two, then you can.

Turn them off.

Exit Question: Do you think CBS or NBC crews wouldn’t have done exactly the same thing if they had been the ones to find a James Holmes listed on the Colorado Tea Party website? Their only sin was allowing Ross and ABC to report it first.

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