Saturday, October 31, 2009

Is the St. Louis Tea Party Misreporting Another Altercation? UPDATE: Yes, it looks like they are.

Just as they did with the altercation between Kenneth Gladney and Elston McCowen, it looks like the St. Louis tea party is going way beyond the facts to try to shape a media narrative that a tea party protester was attacked at their weekly "K and N" protests. Bill Hennessy, Dana Loesch, and Adam Sharp all are reporting that a tea party activist was attacked, based on the reports of Bob McCarty. You can read McCarty's blog post here and see his highly edited video about the incident here:

Obviously, all of the facts are not out yet, and I'm happy to see what the full evidence is before making any judgments. However, since the teabaggers are already trying to drive the media narrative, I think it's worth pointing out several reasons to be skeptical about this story:

  • 1. The teabaggers crossed over and were on the pro-healthcare reform side of the road when the incident happened.
  • 2. McCarty's video is clearly highly edited and full of McCarty's attempts to create a narrative for the incident. If anyone is expected to take it seriously, McCarty should release his full, unedited video from the day's events.
  • 3. McCarty is a highly questionable source of information. He publicly entertains the idea that the Oklahoma City bombing was actually a plot by Muslim extremists and that the government is covering this fact up.
  • 4. Even McCarty admits that the teabagger pulled the woman to the ground.
  • 5. The beginning of McCarty's video of the incident clearly shows the teabagger man, but not the pro-healthcare woman, being held back:

Of course, none of these consdierations would cause the tea party's opportunistic leaders to hesitate for even a second about declaring it a "union attack!" But the rest of us will keep an eye out for more information.

UPDATE: A quote from a friend who was there:
Teabaggers crossed the road and tried to provoke us. They had video recorders and wanted us to throw the first punch. Didn't work - so one of their guys (carrying an anti-Obama sign) grabbed a woman from our ranks by the throat and punched her. Prince of a man. He was detained. Cops arrived and all those video recorders were gone. Imagine that. Charges filed.

Surprise, surprise.

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