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Wednesday, August 22, 2018
MRC Continues To Be Callous About The Lives of Journalists
Topic: Media Research Center

The Media Research Center's callous attitude toward the safety of journalists has been notorious, and it hasn't stopped. Typical is an Aug. 1 post by Scott Whitlock:

According to Chuck Todd, booing and nasty language towards reporters could well lead to the killing of journalists. Specifically, he compared a Trump rally this week to the 2017 horrific car killing (and injuring of multiple others) by a racist white nationalist in Charlottesville. Todd began by lecturing his MTP Dailyviewers on Wednesday: “Tonight, I'm obsessed with how we're no longer obsessed over the things President Trump says.” 

The MSNBC journalist then made his vile comparison. First, he played a clip of the President talking about fake news. Todd sneered: “But when you ignore this, you get this... And this kind of unfocused visceral anger at the other side of really neutral people like folks in the press corps, it can lead to this.” Then, he played 2017 footage of accused white nationalist James Alex Fields Jr., who was charged with murdering Heather Heyer via his car.

Todd concluded by huffing: “This is not normal. We shouldn't be in the business of just shrugging our shoulders and normalizing it.”

Whitlock then played the ol' whataboutism card: "We shouldn’t be normalizing violence. That's true. Then why did Todd in 2017 by bringing on Antifa supporter Mark Bray to promote the violent organization. Todd oozed at the time: 'Mark Bray, you are writing this book Antifa, the Anti-Fascist Handbook. Explain this movement and its roots.'"

Whitlock seems to have overlooked the word "explain." Bray is a scholar, not an activist, and his explanation of why antifa protesters may resort to violence is often presented by right-wingers as an endorsement of it.

The same day, Nicholas Fondacaro took yet another shot at the MRC's favorite enemy, CNN's Jim Acosta, for being "worried that one day, one of those Trump supporters would snap and try to hurt a journalist, or worse. 'I think it's been dangerous for some time. I was worried during the campaign that a journalist was going to get hurt and it has been building,' he opined. 'But when you refer to members of the press as the enemy of the people, you're essentially putting targets on our backs.'" Fondacaro then dismissed Acosta and his CNN ilk by trotting out the old canard of denouncing non-conservatives as "elitists" who "look down their noses at Trump supporters in the heartland."

Curtis Houck then mocked reporter April Ryan for allegedly having "dismissed the harassment and threats against the White House Press Secretary and melodramatically surmised that Jim Acosta’s 'life...was in jeopardy' at Tuesday’s Trump rally." Houck then ratcheted up his dismissive attitude: "Later, she also showed a visceral disdain for conservatives and Second Amendment supporters by brushing aside that part of the Constitution in favor of the First Amendment which many journalists seem to think only concerns them."

And Ryan Foley complained that "During Sunday’s edition of MSNBC Live With Alex Witt, the panel engaged in some serious hyperbole while discussing President Trump’s most recent tweet declaring the press the enemy of the people with two predicting that his “incendiary” rhetoric towards the press will lead to someone in the media to “get injured or possibly killed.” He added : "As always, the liberal media will never cease to disappoint when it comes to predicting that, when push comes to shove, they make things about themselves."

Well, yeah, people do tend to get a tad self-centered when the think their lives are in danger for simply doing their jobs -- as Foley undoubtedly would if he ever felt his life was threatened because he worked for the MRC.

And a separate post by Fondacaro showed just how self-centered he and the MRC are acting: "All weekend, the liberal media had been decrying Trump’s attacks on the press and suggested it would lead to violence against them. Clearly, they only care for themselves because what do they think will come from their own anti-Trump and anti-conservative 'hate movement'? This is just another way to delegitamize perfectly reasonable criticism of the the media." Fondacaro didn't how Trump denouncing the media as the "enemy of the people" -- or even the MRC's war on Acosta -- is "perfectly reasonable."

It seems that a little violence, real or threatened, shouldn't be allowed to get in the way of the MRC's anti-media mission.

Meanwhile, April Ryan now has a bodyguard due to death threats, and a caller to C-SPAN said of CNN's Brian Stelter and Don Lemon, both also frequent targets of the MRC: "If I see them, I'm going to shoot them." The MRC has yet to weigh in on either incident, let alone explain if those things are "perfectly reasonable."

Posted by Terry K. at 10:56 PM EDT
Updated: Wednesday, August 22, 2018 11:44 PM EDT

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