I said "virtually" because fortunately, Fox's Bill O'Reilly and Jesse Watters are willing to cover it. In the news report below, Watters actually confronts Finley, whose responses are quite lame. At one point, Finley makes the claim that he doesn't know that the attack was a hate crime or the result of a black mob. O'Reilly is incredulous at this because, as he points out, it's a newspaper's job to find these things out.
The police appear to have mishandled this case as well, so much so that the assault victims are pressing charges against them. The Attorney General for Virginia - Ken Cuccinelli - has publicly stated he will not intervene or call for the release of the 911 recordings. Cuccinelli, as some might remember, is one of the state Attorneys General who has been at the tip of the spear with respect to the Obamacare lawsuits across the country.
He's also running for Governor of Virginia in 2013.
Via Fox Nation:
**UPDATE** I sent the following e-mail to Mr. Finley:
Sir, If there's even a modicum of truth to the story that appeared on the O'Reilly Factor last night, you are both unwilling to stand by your own reporters AND unwilling to doggedly pursue the truth about what happened to them.
Those things are at the very core of an editor's responsibility. It makes one wonder why you're in the journalism business at all. It'd be like someone with acrophobia choosing to be an airline pilot.
Do what's right, Denis. Conquer your fear of flying or get off the plane.I received the following response:
It was totally mischaracterized, Mr. Barrack. Not even close.That prompted me to hit "reply" and send this:
I appreciate your note.
Denis,This is what I got back from that:
Five black males attacked YOUR non-black employees and you call it a "street altercation" instead of a "black mob."
Instead of an "assault," you call it a "fight." If it was a fight, were either of your reporters cited by police? If not, why was a black teen the only one arrested? Isn't that a racially biased act on the part of the police if it was a "fight" and not an "assault"?
Perhaps you should report it that way (if it's the truth).
Instead of saying your reporter was "attacked," you say she was "involved."
Instead of saying your reporters were "assaulted by several blacks," you refer to them as a "handful of people" who were "involved in the fight."
Then you say, "there's no way for me to know if it was racially motivated." What have you done to determine that? Would you say the same thing if five white males attacked a black couple?
With all due respect, you might see O'Reilly's story as a "mischaracterization" but your answers to Mr. Watters' questions appear to be those of someone who is rationalizing uncomfortable truths.
Just curious, are you pro-life, pro-infanticide or.... pro-choice?
Thanks for the note.I have a note into Mr. Finley, asking him what the reporters said about their attackers? Did the assailants say anything that might help us find out if is was racially motivated?
Yes, I know she was attacked. I don't know right now if the attack was racial. Every time a black person attacks a white person or a white person attacks a black it is not necessarily racial. I can't report assumptions.
If we determine it was racially motivated, we will report that.
**UPDATE** Mr. Finley has responded that his paper asked both reporters if the assailants said anything racial. According to him, they said there was "nothing racial" and that "no epithets or slurs were spoken." When I asked him if he told Jesse Watters that, he said:
I told him (Watters) a lot of things that were left out.He then said:
I did not watch, but I asked those who did if he included that I said I have been critical of the rush to judgment in the Trayvon Martin case, yet I am being asked to do the same thing in this case. Apparently, he did not.Will keep you posted...
I also said that in hindsight I think we could have done a story, but (and this was cut off), it would have been very short and inside our local section, which I doubt would have appeased our critics, although I don't want to assume.