I'd find a way to believe that it's all true
Knowing, that you lied, straight-faced
While I cried
But still I'd look to find a reason to believe
-- "Reason to Believe," Tim Hardin, 1966
A very old song, indeed:
The national outrage that simmered after actor Jussie Smollett said he was attacked by people shouting racial and anti-gay slurs was fueled in part by celebrities who spoke out loud and strong on social media.Seizing, or pouncing? I can never be sure. But c'mon, it was so believable:
But the outrage has now been replaced by surprise, doubt and bafflement as the singers, actors and politicians who came out in support of the “Empire” star struggle to digest the strange twists the case has taken. Some conservative pundits, meanwhile, have gleefully seized on the moment.
The narrative that just a week ago seemed cut-and-dry has become messy and divisive — and it’s all playing out again on social media.
Smollett, who is black and gay, said he was physically attacked last month by two masked men shouting racial and anti-gay slurs and “This is MAGA country!”— a reference to the Make America Great Again slogan used in President Donald Trump’s election campaign. Smollett said the attackers looped a rope around his neck before running away as he was out getting food at a Subway restaurant.I lived in Chicago for five years. I remember things like this happening all the time. Well, at least the racial slurs, but the noose is a little edgy. But there's a pattern to the reportage:
But still I'd look to find a reason to believe:
In a statement on Saturday, the Indigenous Peoples Movement identified the man in the videos as Nathan Phillips, an Omaha elder, a veteran and the former director of the Native Youth Alliance, a group that works to ensure that traditional culture and spiritual ways are upheld for future generations. Mr. Phillips also holds an annual ceremony honoring Native American veterans in Arlington National Cemetery, the group said.If I listen long enough to you
Mr. Phillips could not be reached for comment on Saturday. He told The Washington Post that he noticed the teenagers taunting participants at the Indigenous Peoples March.
“It was getting ugly, and I was thinking: ‘I’ve got to find myself an exit out of this situation and finish my song at the Lincoln Memorial,’” Mr. Phillips told The Post. “I started going that way, and that guy in the hat stood in my way and we were at an impasse. He just blocked my way and wouldn’t allow me to retreat.”
I'd find a way to believe that it's all true:
The Texas restaurant company which banned a customer after an employee’s story of a receipt scrawled with a racial epithet went viral said that it had parted ways with the employee and learned that the story was made up.
“We have learned that our employee fabricated the entire story,” Terry Turney, the chief operating officer of Saltgrass steakhouses, said in a statement. “Racism of any form is intolerable, and we will always act swiftly should it occur in any of our establishments. Falsely accusing someone of racism is equally disturbing.”
The incident unfolded earlier this month when Khalil Cavil, a 20-year-old waiter at a Saltgrass outpost in Odessa, Texas, posted an image to Facebook that showed a $108 bill with zero on the tip line, and “We don’t tip terrorist,” written in ink at the top.
But still I look to find a reason to believe:
The morning of December 9, 2017, launched one of the most humiliating spectacles in the history of the U.S. media. With a tone so grave and bombastic that it is impossible to overstate, CNN went on the air and announced a major exclusive: Donald Trump, Jr. was offered by email advanced access to the trove of DNC and Podesta emails published by WikiLeaks – meaning before those emails were made public. Within an hour, MSNBC’s Ken Dilanian, using a tone somehow even more unhinged, purported to have “independently confirmed” this mammoth, blockbuster scoop, which, they said, would have been the smoking gun showing collusion between the Trump campaign and WikiLeaks over the hacked emails (while the YouTube clips have been removed, you can still watch one of the amazing MSNBC videos here).Knowing, that you lied, straight-faced
There was, alas, just one small problem with this massive, blockbuster story: it was totally and completely false. The email which Trump, Jr. received that directed him to the WikiLeaks archive was sent after WikiLeaks published it online for the whole world to see, not before. Rather than some super secretive operative giving Trump, Jr. advanced access, as both CNN and MSNBC told the public for hours they had confirmed, it was instead just some totally pedestrian message from a random member of the public suggesting Trump, Jr. review documents the whole world was already talking about. All of the anonymous sources CNN and MSNBC cited somehow all got the date of the email wrong.
While I cried
[Lara] Logan said that many journalists have abandoned consistent standards in reporting when it comes to the Trump administration.The MSM is a faith-based initiative. Christians look for evidence of the Holy Spirit. The Holy Spirit for the MSM is confirmation bias.
“Standards are out the window, I mean you read one story after another or hear it and it’s all based on one anonymous administration official, former administration official,” she said. “That’s not journalism, that’s horses**t.”
“Responsibility for fake news begins with us,” she argued. “We bear some responsibility for that, and we’re not taking ownership of that and addressing it. We just want to blame it all on somebody else.”