Thursday, May 13, 2021

Long piece in Intercept blames indie journalists for painting BLM and leftist protests as violent, when journalists are usually concerned about harm to "bystanders"

60th and Sheridan Kenosha WI


The Intercept has a long piece by Robert Mackey, with video by him and Travis Mannon, which is rather leading: “Meet the Riot Squad: Right-wing reports whose viral videos are used to smear BLM”.  

The article goes on to discuss video coverage of Portland, Kenosha, and Louisville (Breonna Taylor), among other protest sites.  The article discusses the work of independent journalists like Brendan Gutenschwager and Ford Fischer, among others.

It is certainly true that, in total, most of the BLM protests have been peaceful.  But it is the confrontational behavior among some activists that will indeed harm coincidental bystanders (drivers passing through, or home or condo owners, or businesses).  This behavior is bound to catch the attention of most journalists because it does harm other individuals.

Filming extreme right-wing activism is different.  It is usually more extreme and focuses on very specific events (as Charlottesville and the Capitol) and may be capable of deploying large weapons.  It is less likely that an independent journalist will see it happen in the act (although that did happen in Charlottesville).  But independent journalists had little opportunity to be in the Capitol legally just to film it.

By political nature, left-wing activism tends to behave more coercively with individuals it seems as bystanders but unintentionally complicit and naïve about their exposure.  Left-wing activism in particular depends on recruiting people who will feel loyalty and solidarity.

Picture: Kenosha, site of a fatality, Wikipedia embed, click for attribution 

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