Roger Aronoff — April 9, 2015
Al Sharpton, President Obama’s “go-to man on race” as described by Politico last year, is at it again. After riling up the nation over false narratives about Trayvon Martin and Michael Brown, Sharpton has found a case he can get behind where there appears to be little doubt this time that a white policeman, Michael Slager, brutally and unnecessarily shot to death an unarmed black man in South Carolina.
But in our justice system, even that cop deserves his day in court. After all, we were reminded of that right when on Wednesday, Dzhokhar Tsarnaev was found guilty on 30 counts for his role in the Islamic terrorist attack on the Boston Marathon that resulted in four deaths.
Within hours of the release of the cell phone video of Walter Scott being shot dead in North Charleston, South Carolina, Sharpton announced that “It’s time for this country to have national policing,” adding “We can’t go from state to state, we’ve got to have national law to protect people against these continued questions.” Never mind that the cop in question was quickly charged with murder, fired from his job, and is being held in jail without bail. Once again, it appears that Sharpton draws the wrong lessons from such tragedies. No peace, no justice? Or is this what justice should look like? Sharpton announced yesterday that his organization, National Action Network, would stand with Scott’s family.
Jack Cashill, an outstanding journalist, recalls in his latest article just how those false narratives, including the deaths of Trayvon Martin and Michael Brown, take hold. Cashill cites the case of Rolling Stone’s false, and now retracted, story of a gang-rape at a University of Virginia fraternity house. He makes the point that “all right thinking people were of one mind…on the shooting deaths of Trayvon Martin and Michael Brown, a collective misreporting far more consequential than that of the Rolling Stone rape story.”
The mainstream media often treat MSNBC’s Sharpton like royalty, promoting his left-wing agendas while carefully avoiding mention of his conflicts of interest and continuing corruption. The Washington Post recently published a piece that serves as an ideal example of such biased coverage.
The piece, “Sharpton to lead advocacy campaign in advance of 2016 election,” written by Wesley Lowery, acts as a press release for Sharpton’s National Action Network’s radical civil rights agenda. Lowery described this agenda as promoting Loretta Lynch’s nomination to replace Eric Holder as attorney general, and “opposing state-level religious objections bills, seen as discriminatory against gays and lesbians, and pressing Congress to advance reforms of the criminal justice system.”
Accuracy in Media has extensively outlined how the mainstream media have worked first to stoke racial tension in places like Ferguson, Missouri and then called for criminal justice reform throughout the country, with Sharpton as one of the more vocal media mouthpieces.
“Although he is a lightning rod despised by many police groups, especially the New York Police Department, Sharpton is vowing to take a more considerate line,” reported Lowery.
“We demonstrate that we are serious when we say, ‘Let’s take the name-calling down,’ and when we’re willing to hear from everybody as long as they are serious in substance,” said Sharpton, according to Lowery. “We don’t need a season more of screaming. We need some real policy.”
Sharpton has a show, “PoliticsNation,” on MSNBC on weeknights. According toaccusations in a $20 billion racial discrimination lawsuit, and public comments by Byron Allen, a black TV executive, Sharpton has his show on MSNBC “Because he endorsed Comcast’s acquisition of NBCUniversal.” Could that have been a factor in NBC getting the first interview with the gentleman who took the video of the shooting in North Charleston?
Sharpton’s MSNBC show wasn’t even mentioned by Lowery. Neither was his failure to pay back taxes, nor allegations of pay for play, nor that Sharpton was found liable for defamation in the Tawana Brawley case. And with Sharpton’s latest call for “national policing,” once again, Sharpton isn’t getting the media scrutiny he deserves.