Why does the behavior of two boorish participants at a political convention mention this kind of coverage?
Well, the story does fit the media narrative of a racist Republican Party. We don’t even know if the two people who engaged in what the convention organizers rightly called “deplorable behavior” were even Republicans.
“It appears,” report that staff at Twichy, that “Shuster didn’t actually witness the nut-throwing event. It’s also worth mentioning that Shuster, who was indefinitely suspended from MSNBC in 2010, has been a frequent topic here at Twitchy, known more for his deplorable behavior than for his veracity.”
What is more newsworthy that the juvenile antics of two unidentified convention participants if what one identified Yahoo! bureau chief did say:
Yahoo News has fired Washington bureau chief David Chalian after he was caught on a hot-mic during an online video broadcast saying that Mitt Romney and his wife, Ann, had no problem with African Americans suffering as a result of Hurricane Isaac, a source familiar with the situation tells POLITICO.
“They’re not concerned at all. They’re happy to have a party with black people drowning,” Chalian said over a break during the ABC News/Yahoo News webcast, in reference to the fact that the GOP convention in Tampa is taking place as Hurricane Isaac makes landfall on the north Gulf coast.
Good on Yahoo! for firing the guy. But, the question remains: how did a guy who would say such a thing advance so far in a “news” service. As Roger Simon put it, “the climate in which he would make such an insane statement is very much alive and well. Why would anyone dream of saying such a thing in a semi-public situation if he didn’t feel safe and among friends?”
Wonder if Mr. Chalian opined that Obama is not concerned at all about the storm-tossed people of Louisiana given that the Democrat continues to campaign while the rains fall and the waters rise. (Wasn’t that rise supposed to slow under Obama’s watch?)
Chalian has apologized for what he called a “joke”.
It does seem Mr. Chalian is representative of a pattern, of journalists finding racism “wherever they can find it — or make it up.” As Mark Hemingway observes, Reporters in Tampa seem to be Working Hard to Cover Nonexistent Racism“.
The real story of racism is not what two unidentified rubes shouted at a CNN reporter, but the assumptions that reporters like Chalian have made. “The executives at Yahoo, and ABC, where Chalian once worked,” Simon concludes . . .
. . . are obviously in damage-control mode. But they would be better advised to examine the culture (their culture) that allowed this to happen. What is most horrifying about Chalian’s comment was that there was nothing surprising about it. If Yahoo, ABC and all the others actually consider themselves news organizations, it’s time to take a serious and lengthy look in the mirror.
Read the whole thing. Glenn Reynolds, who linked Roger’s piece, has more.
UPDATE: AOL is on top of the real story: