Did CNN Have an Agenda in Ferguson?

fires in Ferguson, MO
The 'New York Post' is accusing CNN of lying and distorting its coverage of the unrest in Ferguson, Missouri, by minimizing the looting and acts of arson that occurred last week. (CharismaNews file)

The New York Post is accusing CNN of lying in its coverage of protests in Ferguson, Missouri, after a grand jury's decision not to indict a white police officer for shooting to death the unarmed black 18-year-old Michael Brown last summer.

"It has been remarkable to watch the last few days as America's self-styled 'most trusted news network' has sent out teams of reporters to various areas of Ferguson, Missouri, ostensibly to cover the protests there," the Post's Naomi Schaefer Riley reported in a story for Sunday publication. "While their cameramen are watching cars on fire and stores being looted, the reporters ramble on about how 'most people here' are 'peaceful protesters.'

"Where are these peaceful protesters? The reporters can't seem to find any. Instead, they turn to outside experts and some carefully vetted religious leaders to talk about 'the real message' of the protests."

Ever since Australian media magnate Rupert Murdoch bought control of the Post in the 1970s, the tabloid daily has had a decidedly conservative bent, as do all the newspapers Murdoch's News Corp. owns. So it's not all that surprising that the paper would call out a more liberal CNN.

"CNN's 'narrative' was laid out early [last] Monday evening," the Post reported, "as correspondent Van Jones (formerly of the Obama Administration) warned the audience not to pay attention to 'a few knuckleheads' who later became a 'bunch of knuckleheads' who 'started a bunch of nonsense.'

"Knuckleheads? Nonsense? When did 'knucklehead' become a synonym for arsonist? When did taking a baseball bat to store windows become 'a bunch of nonsense'? Talk about defining deviancy down."

Riley's story continued, "Last Tuesday night, CNN correspondent Jason Carroll was reporting, 'Most of the protesting we saw in front of the Ferguson Police Department tonight was peaceful.' Then as he started trying to explain the fires burning behind him, he was approached by three of the protesters, who proceeded to get in his face and yell at him because he was promoting a 'certain narrative'—the police narrative. 'You don't understand!' one screamed."

CNN has not directly responded to the Post's criticism of its coverage of the mayhem in Ferguson.

"From day one, CNN has twisted the Ferguson story," the Post reported. "The network decided early on that an injustice had been done, contrary facts aside. When the grand jury decided not to indict, CNN was primed for outrage, because there was no way Officer Darren Wilson could have acted appropriately.

"The network helped stir up a nation to the point of violence. Yet, since the protesters must always be on the side of the angels, CNN lies about the destruction that follows.

"It's rare you see the liberal media's dishonesty in such stark terms, but CNN can't control the pictures. If you wanted to know what was really happening this week, all you had to do was press the mute button."

Do you agree with the Post, or do you think CNN played it straight?


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