KABOOM! Al Sharpton Just Blew Up My Head!

(Did you know that Ethic Alarms has the web’s most complete archive of head-exploding graphics?)

This is amazing. I’m pretty sure Al Sharpton has won the award for outrageous gall for all eternity. How could anyone top this?

And yes, he blew up my head.

Ow.

Al actually said this during his MSNBC show about the Jussie Smollett hoax:

“I, among many others when hearing of the report, said that the reports were horrific and that we should come with all that we can come with in law enforcement to find out what happened and the guilty should suffer the maximum. I still maintain that. And if it is that Smollett and these gentlemen did in some way perpetuate something that is not true, they ought to face accountability to the maximum.”

Accountability to the maximum for a divisive hate crime hoax? Hmmmm…I’m sure I have a memory of a prominent African American race-baiter who converted a race crime hoax of his own into national celebrity, political power, influence with the first black President, and long-term job as host of a news punditry program. Who could that be? It’s right on the tip of my tongue, but now I see that my tongue is stuck on the ceiling. Continue reading

“Antigone In Ferguson”: Embedding The Lie

Mike Brown’s father during a discussion after the performance.

“Antigone in Ferguson”  premiered at Normandy High School, Michael Brown’s alma mater, in September of 2016. Now the Harlem Stage is presenting it in New York City, Off-Broadway. A play is a play and art is art; artists are going to enable juvenile, half-baked and even destructive political ideas and themes, and playwrights will turn their perceptions of reality into stagecraft that they often are far more qualified to execute than the task of making sense out of the world. This drama was conceived and directed by the activist playwright Bryan Doerries in response to the shooting of Michael Brown in Ferguson, Missouri four years ago,  overlays the structure of the ancient Sophocles Greek tragedy with a distorted version of Brown’s death and its aftermath. The goal, says the sympathetic—complicit may be a better word—New York Times, is “to open the door on the thoughts and feelings aroused by the shooting of the 18-year-old Mr. Brown by a white police officer, and by the protests that followed. ”

The play is championed by the Brown family, which means that in part it exists to perpetuate a politically useful lie and the  apparently invulnerable narrative that Brown was the innocent, sweet-natured victim of a racist cop who murdered the teen in the streets of Ferguson, and then got away with his deed because the white justice system is bent on killing young black men.

This quite simply is not what happened. The racialist Obama Justice Department was eager to be able to show that the officer was a killer, but in the end, despite the sympathetic spinning of the news media for months, the evidence did not support that conclusion, and no charges could be brought. Mike Brown, stoned and freshly off roughing up a storekeeper, resisted a lawful arrest, tried to grab a police officer’s gun, and then, when he focused his imposing 300 pound mass on charging the smaller cop who arrested him, got himself shot—stupidly, needlessly. His friend on the scene, however, quickly concocted the “Hands up! Don’t shoot!” exchange that never happened, and as that false version slowly twisted its way from slogan to protest to debunked myth, the facts of Brown’s case were neatly discarded for a narrative that advances the cause of division, anti-police bias, racial hatred, and more. Continue reading

“Doonesbury’s” Unethical Late Hit On The University of Virginia

Doonesbury

The Rolling Stone-“Jackie”-University of Virginia ethics train wreck has claimed another victim, and an unlikely one: “Doonesbury’s” characters, who have been led astray by cartoonist Gary Trudeau and the newspapers that carry his popular strip.

In the episode that ran yesterday, the campus bimbo-turned-feminist “Boopsie” ranted about sexual assault cover-ups of by institutions, and singled out the University of Virginia as a culprit, forbidding her college age daughter from attending school there. [ Notice of correction: I am informed by a reader that “Sam” is Boopie’s daughter, not her son as I wrote originally. Thus she is forbidding her daughter from attending a school where she thinks she is likely to be raped, rather than forbidding her son from going to a school where major magazines will unjustly accuse his fraternity of being a cult of rapists. I apologize for the error.] The premise was based on the anonymous allegations of a fraternity campus assault that were turned into a sensational expose by a feminist reporter with an agenda, and guilelessly published in Rolling Stone without confirmation, fact-checking, or a minimal level of ethical journalistic practices. “Jackie’s” rape accusations have been shown to be substantially or completely fabricated, and story has been thoroughly discredited for more than three weeks.

Why are Trudeau and his fictional creations still calling UVA a hotbed of sexual assault? There are several reasons: Continue reading

“Print the Legend” Ethics (Again): Does It Matter If Matthew Shepard’s Death Was Really A Hate Crime?

Powerful story; moving story; useful story. Does it matter if it isn't a true story?

Powerful story; moving story; useful story. Does it matter if it isn’t a true story?

It apparently matters to a lot of people for the wrong reasons—unethical reasons, in fact. As a result, legitimate efforts to determine what really happened to the gay rights icon, then a 21-year-old University of Wyoming student, who was beaten,  tortured and murdered  in Laramie, Wyoming  in 1998, have been exploited for ideological goals by adversaries of gay rights, and attacked by the media, gay rights advocates and good progressives everywhere. Just as it is important to the civil rights establishment, the black grievance community and anti-gun advocates that Trayvon Martin be seen as the innocent victim of a racist vigilante with murder in his heart—a characterization of Martin’s murder at war with all known facts and rejected by a jury after a fair trial—thus is it crucial to gay advocacy groups and others that Shepard be remembered as the victim of a hate crime, brutally killed because he was gay.

And facts be damned. Continue reading

Ethics Indictments And Observations On “The Greatest Race Hoax Since Tawana Brawley.”

Hey Oberlin! Can't you take a joke?

Hey Oberlin! Can’t you take a joke?

On  February 2013, the small, elite, ultra-liberal arts (both ultra liberal and ultra-arty) campus of Oberlin College was horrified by a series of racist and anti-Semitic posters, graffiti and anonymous emails. The classes were cancelled for intense self-examination and soul-searching; the news media reported on the shocking episode with dire reflections upon the increasing racial tensions in the U.S. Progressive pundits went further, flogging the story as proof of the assault on minority rights from the right, sparked by their rejection of a black President. From BET’s commentary on the Oberlin incidents:

“The sad truth is that the infection of intolerance is pervasive in American society in the age of Obama. We’re living in an era when Supreme Court justices consider the right to vote for African-Americans to be a form of “racial entitlement.” We’re in a period where Republican candidates for president cavalierly refer to the nation’s first Black commander-in-chief as the “food stamp president.” This is the period in American history that has seen the most highly orchestrated assault on minority voting since the end of Reconstruction. And in the midst of it are Republican elected officials boasting about it.in which two students made seemingly racist and other such for the purpose of getting a reaction on campus, not because they believed the hostile messages.  At least one of the two was an Obama supporter with strong progressive, anti-racist politics.”

It has now been conclusively confirmed by investigative reporters and bloggers that the perpetrators of the wave of apparent racial hate were two students, inseparable friends, who were not conservatives, Republicans or racists, but “pranksters” and provocateurs, who engaged in the conduct to see how the campus would “over-react.” One of the students, Dylan Bleier, had organized a voter drive for President Obama in 2008. His Facebook page announced him as a supporter of the ACLU, a Democrat, a member of the Green Party, and someone who placed “civil rights” at the top if his  interests and priorities. This means that there was not an outbreak of racism on one of the most liberal college campuses in America, but that two progressive students set out to make it seem that way—it was essentially a prank. Continue reading

Accountability For Tawana Brawley

Al Sharpton and Tawana, ruining lives. Nice hair, Al.

Al Sharpton and Tawana, ruining lives. Nice hair, Al.

Tawana Brawley was 15 when she was championed by the Rev. Al Sharpton after she falsely claimed that she had been kidnapped, raped, and smeared with fecal matter by a group of white men. Now Brawley, 40, going by the name of Tawana Gutierrez, and employed at a Richmond nursing home, has received a wage-garnishment order to collect the $431,492 judgment against her in a 1997 defamation case brought by one of those men, Steven Pagones, who at the time of her 1987 accusation was a state prosecutor in New York.

Good!

Sharpton, who also was hit with a large damages verdict in the case, has already paid up. His outrageous race-baiting at the time was worth it to him, since it set set the race huckster on the road to celebrity that culminated in his being anointed as a respectable MSNBC host and commentator. Respectable for MSNBC, that is. Brawley still has public support,  as the tender-hearted raise all sorts of arguments why she shouldn’t have to pay Pagones such a large amount. She is poor, they say. He should forgive her. She was only 15. She was disturbed. Now she is a single working mother, and we are really punishing her child. It was all Sharpton’s fault. And so on. Continue reading

MSNBC Hires Al Sharpton, As “Network” Becomes Reality

Satire no more.

Noting that MSNBC has given Rev. Al Sharpton his own show, I am compelled to ask: What is broadcast journalism’s accepted criteria now that justifies an individual’s enshrinement as a cable news commentator?

Is it name recognition? The “right” political orientation, in this case, knee-jerk liberal? A ready-made fan base?  Theatrical presence? If these are the criteria, by all means, hire Al Sharpton. Hire Alec Baldwin, Donald Trump, Rod Blagojevich and Jane Fonda, too. Gary Busey. Manny Ramirez. Hulk Hogan. Bozo the Clown.

Or is the proper and responsible criteria credibility, integrity, honesty, fairness, and journalistic credentials? If those archaic standards are still in place, or if MSNBC wants to pretend that they are, then the hiring of Sharpton marks a new low in broadcast news coverage cynicism and recklessness. Continue reading