Thursday, April 12, 2012
Al Sharpton's Convenient Omissions
Today, Al Sharpton, on his MSNBC show, "Politics Nation", devoted the whole hour to the Trayvon Martin case. In one segment, he focused on the criticism that he and The community" had received from "The Right" for their protests and demands for prosecution. He specified Rush Limbaugh, and Shelby Steele, both of whom opined that the civil rights community was happy to have an issue to exploit (I am paraphrasing-Steele is a black conservative writer.) He also included clips from Bill O'Reilly and Sean Hannity, who have been advising people to await the facts as opposed to a rush to judgement. Of course, he showed his own clips speaking in front of crowds in Florida.
Sharpton then brought in Joan Walsh of Salon.com and a young man whose name I didn't catch, who had started an online petition. Walsh joined right in with Sharpton criticizing "The Right" and stating that no irresponsible statements had been made (by the community activists) and no statement had been made wishing any harm on George Zimmerman.
There was absolutely no mention whatsoever of the New Black Panther Party and their bounty on Zimmerman. There was no mention of the inflammatory statements made by at least one NBPP spokesman calling for Zimmerman to be caught "dead or alive."
Not one word.
The criticism has been -setting aside the odious NBPP- that the media, especially MSNBC, has been holding a trial by media and convicting Zimmerman. If you listen to the MSNBC narrative, Zimmerman is guilty of murder-period. There was no self defense, no Stand your Ground justification, no reasonable fear for his life in this matter. In addition, politicians like Frederica Wilson (D-FL) have stated that Martin was hunted down like a rabid dog etc.
But my main point is that Sharpton was refuting the criticism while completely ignoring the actions and statements of the NBPP. That is beyond intellectual dishonesty. In fact- correct me if I am wrong- there has been zero mention of the NBPP on MSNBC that I have heard.