Warning on McKinney: "This Time We Got Lucky"
"Once again, the nation is fixated on frightening video of a police officer's over-reaction," the Dallas Morning News editorialized on Monday. "This time it happened in North Texas. This time no one was hurt.
"This time we got lucky."
The Morning News was leading the pack Sunday and Monday with thorough coverage of an incident that went viral on social media, thanks to a video taken by a 15-year-old bystander. The BBC News called it "the police video that shocked America."
Morning News editorial writers Rudolph Bush ("A shame for McKinney and for all of us") Mike Hashimoto ("Video reveals bad police work, yes, but racism? That requires mind reading") and Tod Robberson ("What about those white vigilantes 'helping' McKinney officer with bikini smackdown?") weighed in with separate opinions.
The newspaper's editorial continued, "McKinney police Cpl. Eric Casebolt, in a shockingly wrong-headed decision, determined that a group of unwelcome teenagers at a neighborhood pool was a threat so great that it was necessary to throw a 15-year-old girl to the ground and pin her with both knees — then brandish his gun at two young men who appeared to be trying to help the teen.
"Casebolt is shown running around yelling and screaming before putting a full body slam on bikini-clad Dajerria Becton as she sobs, 'Call my momma.' It’s a miracle he didn't wind up bouncing her head off the nearby concrete path.
"At least the Police Department had the good sense to respond by placing Casebolt on administrative leave while the city sorts out this scary scenario, captured on a profanity-laced seven-minute video that has been already been viewed millions of times.
"The incident took place at McKinney's Craig Ranch, where the homeowners association limits pool use to subdivision residents and two guests per household. Officers responded after residents and a private security officer called police to complain that several teens were at the pool without permission.
"The questions are many: Did the kids come in uninvited? Did they refuse to leave? When police arrived, did they they mouth off?
"Even if the answer to every one of those questions is 'yes,' Casebolt's response was still disturbing. There was no need for that level of force. There was no need for him to draw his weapon.
"The bigger question: Would this scene have played out differently had the teens been white instead of black? . . . "
The editorial also said, "Still, as horrific as that video is to watch, perhaps more horrifying is considering the tragic turn it could have taken. . . ."
Yoni Appelbaum, the Atlantic: McKinney, Texas, and the Racial History of American Swimming Pools
Associated Press and Amanda Guerra, KXAS-TV, Dallas-Fort Worth: Witness Says McKinney Viral Video Stems From "Pool Party Run Amok"
Wayne Bennett, the Field Negro: Maybe if they brought bikes to the pool party things would have been a little different. Or, [maybe] not.
Aura Bogado, Colorlines: Here's the Housing Discrimination Suit the City of McKinney Settled
Will Bunch, Philadelphia Daily News: SWB: Swimming While Black
Claire Cardona, Dallas Morning News: Suspect dies while in custody of Dallas police
Tom Cleary, heavy.com: Eric Casebolt: 5 Fast Facts You Need to Know
Stephen A. Crockett Jr., The Root: Here's Everything We Know About the Pool Party in Texas
Marc Fisher and Peter Hermann, Washington Post: Didn't the McKinney,Texas police officer know he was being recorded?
Arturo Garcia, rawstory.com: McKinney victim's father shames cop after pool party fiasco: 'He should be drug-tested, then fired'
Jon Herskovitz, Reuters: Calls Mount For The Firing Of Texas Officer Who Crashed Pool Party, Pulled Gun On Teens
Wendy Hundley, Naomi Martin and Jeffrey Weiss, Dallas Morning News: Dueling views of McKinney melee fault intruding teens, racist adults, police officer
Mariame Kaba, the New Inquiry: Summer Heat
Rebecca Lopez, WFAA-TV, Dallas: Community leaders call for McKinney officer's termination, arrest
Naomi Martin, Dallas Morning News: Racist comments prompted McKinney pool party fight, host says
Roland Martin, BlackAmericaWeb.com: Texas Senator Royce West Talks McKinney Cop Who Pulled Gun At Pool Party
K. McDonald and Tim Roberts, KDAF-TV, Dallas: 15-Year-Old Who Shot McKinney Pool Party Video Speaks Out
Aaron Morrison, International Business Times: McKinney, North Texas City At Center Of Pool Party Video Controversy, Was Sued Over Housing Discrimination
Mark Anthony Neal, NewBlackMan: "Keep running your mouth…": The Policing of Black Children
Stacey Patton, DAME Magazine: Even Black Joy Is a Crime
Kirsten West Savali, The Root: McKinney, Texas: Rage Is Our Rightful Response to Anti-Black Racism
Jazmine Ulloa, Austin American-Statesman: APD looking into downtown incident posted to YouTube
Damon Young, verysmartbrothas.com: What Those Kids In McKinney Should Have Done To Prevent The Cops From Assaulting Them
Lauren Zakalik, WFAA-TV, Dallas-Fort Worth: Texas police officer in pool party video identified
"A white former North Charleston police officer was indicted on a murder charge Monday in the fatal shooting of an unarmed black man who was running away from the officer after a traffic stop," Bruce Smith reported Monday for the Associated Press.
"The shooting April 4 was captured on video by a bystander and showed officer Michael Slager firing eight times as 50-year-old Walter Scott ran away. The shooting rekindled an ongoing national debate about the treatment of black suspects at the hands of white officers.
"Slager was charged with murder by state law enforcement agents almost immediately after the video surfaced. Prosecutor Scarlett Wilson announced the indictment.
" 'The jury will make up its own mind after it sees the video and hears the other testimony,' Wilson said of Slager's trial.
"No trial date has been set. . . ."
Meanwhile, Jarvis DeBerry wrote last week for NOLA.com and the Times-Picayune in New Orleans, "Elbis Bolton, a software developer in his senior year at LSU, was inspired by last year's death of Michael Brown in Ferguson, Mo., to develop an app for smartphones that would help give an objective account of disputed officer-[involved] shootings.
"Bolton partnered with his friend Wilborn Nobles, a senior journalism major, and the two of them came up with POWER: Police Officer Watchdog Events Reporter.
"The app, available at the Google Play Store and at the App Store, allows a person who observes an interaction between the police and the public to record it to his or her phone and immediately upload it to POWER'S server. There, any newsroom or social justice group that has partnered with POWER can see it. . . ."
Editorial, Daily News, New York: Cops must be cops: Relentless attacks on law enforcement have driven the NYPD into retreat
Paul Greeley, TVNewsCheck: WPTV, Palm Beach Post Expose Police Shootings
Several commentators have called attention to the news media's word choices in describing recent disturbances involving police.
"In Baltimore, the activity involved black people and the language was less than subtle, typically describing the looters as 'thugs' and their behavior as a 'riot,' " Sam Fulwood III wrote last month for the Center of American Progress. He contrasted that language with the words used to describe mostly white bikers involved in a violent shootout in Waco, Texas.
Jarvis DeBerry of NOLA.com and the Times-Picayune reported in a column last month, "Ashley Howard, an assistant professor in Loyola's history department, eschews the word 'riot' because, she says, it 'has been used as a pejorative term,' suggesting, as it does, that people are on the streets destroying property 'with no rhyme or reason.' "By using the word 'rebellion' or 'uprising' in lieu of 'riots,' it shows that there are deeper issues involved, Howard said. . . ."
The Baltimore station WEAA-FM, based at Morgan State University, used the term "unrest" to describe events in that city, according to Carla Wills, executive producer of news and public affairs.
At the Baltimore Sun, however, there is no doubt about what took place on April 27. Asked why it used the word "riot," John E. McIntyre, night content production manager, messaged Journal-isms on Monday, "Because unruly groups of people [looted] stores, burned buildings, and assaulted police officers with stones, bottles, and other objects. You need more than that to constitute a riot?"
McIntyre was asked about the Sun's terminology because the newspaper used "riot" and "unrest" in the same edition of the newspaper. Some stories were grouped under a label reading "Freddie Gray & Baltimore Unrest" but a real estate story was headlined, "In wake of riots, 'not your typical' groundbreaking."
McIntyre said "riot" and "unrest" were not interchangeable.
"We have attempted to restrict use of 'riots' and 'rioting' to the events of Monday, April 27, the day the Freddie Gray protests abruptly turned to arson, looting, and attacks on police officers.
"We have used the terms 'unrest' and 'disturbances' as umbrella terms for both the day of the riots and the less violent actions on the days preceding and following it: the minor vandalism, confrontations with police, demonstrations that disrupted traffic, and the like.
"So 'unrest' and 'disturbances' have been commonly used as labels. I think that 'riot' may have crept into the real estate headline because the day from which the groundbreaking for that project was delayed was the day of the rioting."
Gene Policinski, First Amendment Center: Re-examining the news — with a free press purpose (May 21)
Ari Shapiro, NPR: Former Baltimore Mayor: City Must Confront The 'Rot Beneath The Glitter' (audio)
"In the past few weeks, we've noticed a resurgence in the casual use of the terms 'illegal immigrants' and even 'illegal aliens' by media organizations like TPM, Politico, the Washington Post and the New York Times," Philadelphia's Al Día News editorialized on Friday.
"They have always been a bit spotty about style as far as this goes, hewing to a variable section-by-section house style rather than the Associated Press's stylebook overall — which in April of 2013 changed its guidelines for media use: 'Except in direct quotes essential to the story, use illegal only to refer to an action, not a person: illegal immigration, but not illegal immigrant.'
"The AP change represented a victory for the National Association of Hispanic Journalists and innumerable Asian and Latino journalists, editors and advocates who had long asserted that the compound word could not be understood as neutral — as it had no equivalent in common usage. Illegal driver for those with speeding tickets? Illegal filer for those with tax irregularities? Illegal rider for those who jump the turnstiles on the subway? . . ."
The editorial also said, "Google trends show that searches using the term 'illegal immigrants' dropped by nearly 50 percent from April 2013 (when AP announced its stylebook change) to August. . . . . It isn't much of a stretch to think that the change in wording in news media organizations that adhere to AP style guidelines was one of the contributing factors in the decline. . . .
"We're only three days into the month as we write this editorial and already we're at the same number of searches with that term as the whole month of May. So, why now? Why are media organizations reverting to a term that those who are most frequently criminalized by it consider a slur? We don't know. But like so much that has to do with immigration reform in the past years, what we once celebrated as a victory hasn't remained one. . . . "
Meanwhile, the Pew Research Center reported Thursday, "With immigration shaping up to be a major issue in both the final years of the Obama administration and the 2016 presidential campaign, most Americans (72%) continue to say undocumented immigrants currently living in the U.S. should be allowed to stay in the country legally, if certain requirements are met . . . ."
The Pew center also found, "Fully 86% of Hispanics say there should be a way for undocumented immigrants who are living in the U.S. to remain legally, if certain requirements are met: 54% say they should be able to apply for citizenship while 30% say they should be able to apply only for permanent residency.
"Smaller majorities of blacks (72%) and whites (69%) favor allowing undocumented immigrants to stay in the U.S., and about four-in-ten in each group (38% of blacks and 41% of whites) say they should be able to apply for citizenship. . . ."
"As the Supreme Court prepares to decide a key case involving states' requirements to recognize same-sex marriage, public support for allowing gays and lesbians to marry legally continues its rapid rise:
"A 57% majority of Americans now favor allowing same-sex marriage and 39% oppose," the Pew Research Center reported on Monday.
"As recently as five years ago, more opposed (48%) same-sex marriage than supported it (42%).
"This is the highest level of support measured for same-sex marriage in nearly 20 years of Pew Research Center polling of the issue. . . ."
Pew also reported that "the share of blacks who support gay marriage has not changed significantly since 2012: 41% favor same-sex marriage today, while 51% oppose it; in 2012, 40% favored while 48% opposed. By contrast, over the past three years, support for gay marriage among whites has risen 10 points (from 49% to 59%).
"Between 2005 and 2012, support for gay marriage rose at about the same rate among blacks and whites. Blacks' support for same-sex marriage increased 13 points, from 27% to 40%. Over the same period, there was an identical 13-point rise in support among whites (from 37% to 50%).
"Currently, a majority of Hispanics (56%) [supports] same-sex marriage, while 38% are opposed. That is little changed from recent years, but nine years ago Hispanics were divided; 45% favored gay marriage while about as many (48%) were opposed. . . ."
"Peter Bhatia, the former editor and vice president of Oregon's largest news organization, has been named the new director of the Donald W. Reynolds National Center for Business Journalism at Arizona State University's Walter Cronkite School of Journalism and Mass Communication," Elizabeth Maysreported Friday for the Reynolds center.
"Bhatia, the former top editor of The Oregonian/Oregon Media Group and current Cronkite visiting professor, will lead business journalism training efforts for the Reynolds Center, the world's premier provider of ongoing training for business reporters and editors. The center is supported through grants from the Donald W. Reynolds Foundation.
"Bhatia joined Cronkite in summer 2014 as the Edith Kinney Gaylord Visiting Professor in Journalism Ethics following a 20-year career at The Oregonian. He replaces Micheline Maynard, the former New York Times senior business correspondent, who is leaving her current position for family reasons. . . ."
"Andaiye Taylor is one of the most innovative and thoughtful journalism entrepreneurs I have ever met," Josh Stearns wrote June 1 for localnewslab.org, republished on Monday by PBS Idea Lab. "Her local new site, Brick City Live, is just getting off the ground, but in the year that I have known her I've been constantly impressed by her creativity and sense of experimentation.
"Taylor, who has a master's degree from Columbia Journalism School, and was a fellow at the City University of New York's Tow-Knight Center for Entrepreneurial Journalism, is a fourth generation Newark resident. She has also had a long career in digital advertising, including as a product manager and director of business development at MediaMath, director of content marketing at Bitly, and her current position as director of content marketing at Rubicon Project.
"For Taylor, journalism and stories should be engines for helping create a better Newark, one of New Jersey’s largest and most diverse cities.
4 GREAT IDEAS
Here are four great ideas Taylor is testing out at Brick City Live.
1. Brick City Bucks: building community loyalty in journalism and small businesses. . . .
2. Brickepedia: explainers that take readers behind the news. . . .
3. Podcasts and video: making local news more multimedia. . . .
4. A 'slow news' approach: focusing on big stories and big reach. . . .
Columbia Journalism Review: Our List of the Best 11 Journalism Experiments
"Many newspaper editors in South Dakota and North Dakota sort of shrink back into themselves when it comes to discussing the race relations between Indians and whites in their respective states," the Native Sun News editorialized on Friday. "The newspaper associations are no different.
"The problem lies there like an open wound that the news media is afraid to examine. Several years ago the South Dakota Newspaper Convention had Billy Mills as the keynote speaker, but he did not speak about race relations, but instead talked entirely about his Olympic Gold Medal. And that is fine because we are sure the SDNA would not have invited Mills if he wanted to talk race relations.
"Tim Giago was a member of SDNA for 30 years and asked several times, including this year, his final year, if he could speak to the gathering of newspaper editors, publishers and journalists of South Dakota about the race problems of the state. He was denied that opportunity several times including this year. What are they afraid of and why? . . ."
David Bordewyk, general manager of the association, did not respond to a request for comment.
"Less than two miles from the Kenyan capital of Nairobi, the Dandora Dump is both a blessing and a curse to the communities which surround it," Abigail Edge wrote Monday for journalism.co.uk.
"Up to 10,000 people make their living from the 850 tonnes of rubbish that arrives at the dump daily, sorting through it for anything which might be useful to sell or keep, and risking their health — and their lives — in the process.
"The dump, established as a temporary waste site in the 1970s and officially declared full in 2001, has been covered many times by journalists.
"However, a team of journalists in Africa decided the story needed to be told from a different angle: with drones.
" 'When it comes to drone journalism I always talk about all old stories, new perspectives,' explained Dickens Olewe, founder of African SkyCAM, at the World News Media Congress in Washington DC.
" 'This story has been told all the time, but people have just never brought this kind of shot of "OK, what are we actually talking about? What are the challenges that these people face?" '
"Together with journalism technologist Ben Kreimer, Olewe visited Nairobi in November 2014 and flew a video drone over the Dandora Dump to show an aerial perspective of the site.
"The pair also used the footage to produce a 3D model of the dump to offer audiences 'a massive experience' of its 30-acre scale, as well as its proximity to schools and houses.
" 'I thought it was really important to inspire the imagination of not just our readers, but also the government, who I knew at some point would want to regulate this space,' said Olewe.
"SkyCAM was one of 20 projects awarded funding by the inaugural African News Innovation Challenge in 2012, which invited African journalists to come up with digital solutions to address hurdles faced by media across the world's second-largest continent. . . ."
Tafara Shumba, the Herald, Zimbabwe: Sahara TV Crew Put Its Foot in the Mouth
Marianne Thamm, Daily Maverick, South Africa: Adeola Fayehun: Nigeria's online satirical 'it' girl goes global after ambushing Mugabe
Alexandra Wexler, Wall Street Journal: African Journalists Go Undercover, With Official Blessing
A paper from the University of Maryland's Melissa Kearney and Wellesley College's Phillip Levine finds that "Sesame Street" "has left children more likely to stay at the appropriate grade level for their age, an effect that is particularly pronounced among boys, African Americans and children who grow up in disadvantaged areas," Jim Tankersley reported Sunday for the Washington Post.
The Native American Journalists Association has selected Denny McAuliffe (Osage), an editor at the Washington Post for more than 20 years in two stints, "as the recipient of the 2015 NAJA-Medill Milestone Achievement Award, which recognizes important contributions made by journalists in the past and encourages the new generation to achieve career excellence," NAJA announced on June 3. The award comes with a $5,000 prize.
"For the first time in the Newseum's seven-year history [on Pennsylvania Avenue in Washington], there were no daily front pages of newspapers from around the world displayed outside . . . or inside the museum," Jeff Clabaugh reported Monday for the Washington Business Journal. "The 'Today's Front Pages' exhibit was replaced with blacked-out pages featuring the hashtag #WithoutNews. The Newseum says it is part of a campaign to raise awareness of the increasing threats to journalists around the world. . . ."
"In an emotional rededication ceremony held in the Newseum's Journalists Memorial Gallery June 8, the names of 14 journalists — including photojournalist James Foley and freelance journalist Steven Sotloff, who were beheaded by ISIS militants in Syria — were added to the Newseum’s Journalists Memorial," Sharon Shahid reported Monday for the Newseum. Shahid also wrote, "Carol Guzy, a four-time Pulitzer Prize-winning photographer who shared the 1986 Pulitzer with Michel Du Cille, gave a tearful tribute on behalf of Du Cille's wife, Nikki Khan, who was also in attendance. Du Cille died of an apparent heart attack while covering the Ebola crisis in Liberia last year. . . ."
Cheryl W. Thompson, a Washington Post reporter who is also an associate professor at George Washington University, was one of six people elected to the board of directors of Investigative Reporters & Editors Saturday. The group met for its annual convention in Philadelphia. "This year's convention attracted a remarkable 1,800 attendees," a record number," Rem Rieder reported Monday for USA Today. David Cay Johnston, past president, tweeted, "IRE hits record 5,700 members."
"Joshua Sims will join FOX-owned Charlotte station WJZY as a sports reporter and anchor," Kevin Eck reported Monday for TVSpy. "Sims comes to WJZY from WTEN in Albany, N.Y. where he was a sports anchor and reporter. Before that, he worked at WMGM in South Jersey. . . ."
"Fred Shropshire has been named evening anchor for Charlotte, N.C. NBC affiliate WCNC," Kevin Eck reported Monday for TVSpy. "Shropshire recently left WTVD in Raleigh-Durham, N.C. where he anchored the 4:00 and 5:30 p.m. news. . . ."
"Like double-mint gum, gvngstvxboo and JH13 and the Olsen twins, Steph Curry and Klay Thompson are the leaders of a movement that can save the unfulfilled history of light-skinned success in the NBA the same way Russell Wilson and Colin Kaepernick are doing for non-arrested players in the NFL," the Shadow League staff wrote on Thursday.
Dallas Can Academies, which declare as their mission "To provide the highest quality education for all students," announced that it will name a school for retired WFAA-TV news anchorwoman Gloria Campos, Robert Miller reported June 3 for the Dallas Morning News.
James Strong "tells FishbowlNY that [a] recent column, which appears in various black newspapers, caught the attention of Venezuelan broadcaster TeleSUR," Richard Horgan reported June 2 for FishbowlNY. "As a result, Strong is now a writer and consultant on a documentary the network is planning about the Baltimore riots. The film will have a crowd-funding campaign and be officially launched via a streamed event June 13. 'The documentary is going to present the street person's view, rather than that of the journalists or pundits,' Strong explains. . . . ."
"Saudi Arabia's Supreme Court has upheld the sentence of 1,000 lashes and 10 years of imprisonment on blogger Raif Badawi, despite a foreign outcry," the BBC reported on Sunday. "Speaking from Canada, his wife Ensaf Haidar told the BBC she feared his punishment would start again on Friday. Badawi was arrested in 2012 for 'insulting Islam through electronic channels.' . . ."
"Ten affiliates of the International Federation of Journalists (IFJ) convening in Tunis, Tunisia on 3 June sent a solidarity message to Egyptian journalists in support of their upcoming strike on 10 June to protest against deteriorating working conditions for the press," IFJ reported on Saturday.