Robert L. Dear, accused in the deadly shooting spree in Colorado Springs, Colo., on Nov. 27, 2015
Colorado Springs Police Department handout

Media Outlets Again Accused of Racial Double Standards

"Media rhetoric so often lives in shades of gray, yet when it comes to the terms used to describe people in crime stories, its true colors may be black and white," Ryan Grenoble, a news editor at the Huffington Post, wrote Monday.


"Take the words employed over the weekend to describe Robert Lewis Dear, accused in the shooting spree at a Planned Parenthood clinic in Colorado Springs, Colorado, on Friday, killing three people and injuring nine.

"Dear, who is white, has been portrayed as a 'gentle' rambling 'loner' with a 'troubled history.' There has been much hand-wringing over whether it's correct to label him a 'domestic terrorist,' though he seems to fit the definition perfectly. Even Mike Huckabee agrees.

"(Ted Cruz, meanwhile, said he thinks the shooter may be 'a woman and transgendered leftist activist.')


"Dear in the past has been accused of animal cruelty, domestic abuse and being a peeping tom. (He never actually was convicted of these offenses, as the charges were either dropped or never filed.)

"In contrast, Trayvon Martin, an unarmed black 17-year-old shot to death by neighborhood watchman George Zimmerman in 2013, was labeled a 'thug' based on his Facebook profile pictures, some of which included guns and marijuana.

"Freddie Gray — and the throngs of protesters outraged over his death at the hands of Baltimore police: also 'thugs' . . ."


Jim Naureckas, editor of, zeroed in on the New York Times.

"Many were taken aback to read the New York Times' summary of what its team of reporters gleaned from interviewing neighbors of the man arrested for murdering three people at a Colorado Springs women's health clinic," Naureckas wrote Monday.

" 'Acquaintances described Robert L. Dear Jr., who was arrested in a fatal rampage at a Planned Parenthood center in Colorado, as a gentle loner who occasionally unleashed violent acts toward neighbors and women he knew.'


"It's hard to say what was more incongruous: the description of someone who had reportedly admitted carrying out a deadly act of terror as a 'gentle loner' or the presumption that phrase could be attached to someone who 'occasionally unleashed violent acts' toward women and others.

"Faced with a barrage of criticism on Twitter and elsewhere, the Times rewrote the lead of that story to make Dear less 'gentle.' Now the same reporters reported that 'neighbors said they barely knew him' — the same neighbors, presumably, to whom the earlier description was attributed.

"But lest one think that this positive spin on the terror suspect was a slip of the word processor, the Times still has up a profile of Dear as seen by his ex-wife — written by Richard Faucett, one of the four reporters responsible for the 'gentle loner' piece — which if anything provides an even more sympathetic portrait.


" 'The blue eyes of Pamela Ross, 54, wince and cloud when she thinks back on the years that she spent with her ex-husband, Robert L. Dear Jr.,' it begins. . . ."

A story by CNN, later updated with the offending phrase removed, referred to Gray, who died in police custody in Baltimore, as "the son of an illiterate heroin addict."

The piece by Ann O'Neill and Aaron Cooper began, "The first of six city police officers went on trial Monday in a closely watched case involving a 25-year-old black prisoner who died after being shackled and placed without a seat belt in a Baltimore City police van.


"The April 19 death of Freddie Gray, the son of an illiterate heroin addict, made him a symbol of the black community's distrust of police. His name is now invoked with those of Michael Brown in Ferguson, Missouri; Tamir Rice in Cleveland, Ohio; Eric Garner in New York; and other black men who died during encounters with white police officers. In Gray's case, three of the officers charged are white; three black. . . ."

Also on Huffington Post, Laura Bassett, senior politics reporter, and Ryan Grim, Washington bureau chief, wrote that coverage of abortion controversies is creating a false impression abroad.

"The mass shooting at a Colorado Springs Planned Parenthood has been widely condemned in the United States as a horrific act of domestic terrorism or, at minimum, the depraved action of a mentally ill loner," they wrote in a piece datelined Nairobi, Kenya, where Bassett just concluded a reporting trip.


"In other parts of the world, though, it's likely to be seen as something quite different: another expression of Americans' widespread, hardline opposition to legal abortion.

"Of course, Americans, broadly speaking, do not oppose abortion rights. But the false perception of the U.S. stance on abortion abroad is the result of the way the abortion debate is covered by both the U.S. and international media. The coverage almost universally focuses on the actions of abortion opponents, whether it's the Republican efforts in statehouses, Congress or the courts to ban the procedure; presidential candidates threatening on the debate stage to defund Planned Parenthood; or the occasional violence against abortion providers. . . ."

Eric Boehlert, Media Matters for America: The Planned Parenthood Attack, And How Homegrown Terrorism Gets Downplayed By The Press


Lewis Diuguid, Kansas City Star: Language of hate incites violence — Planned Parenthood killings are examples

Emil Guillermo, Asian American Legal Defense and Education Fund: Planned Parenthood shooting claims Asian American victim, Hawaii's Jennifer Markovsky

Writers Debate Why So Many Give R. Kelly a Pass

"I'm not going to say much about R. Kelly because, at this point, on the last day of November in 2015, there's not much I can say about R. Kelly that hasn't already been said. And repeated. And reported on. And recounted through anecdote. And even said by me on this very space two years ago," Damon Young, editor of wrote on Monday.


Kelly's appearance on the "Soul Train Awards" Sunday night on BET revived a discussion about whether the network, Kelly's fans and fellow artists are too quick to dismiss allegations of Kelly's abusive behavior toward young women because he is such a compelling entertainer — or perhaps because his targets were devalued black women.

Young was among those who said yes. "With other artists guilty of criminal behavior, there can be a certain cognitive dissonance that can happen when the art and the unseemly acts by the artist have no connection. R. Kelly's music doesn't allow for that. His art and his actions are irrevocably linked. They can not be unlinked. It's like shoes and soles. Or Knick fans and disappointment. He makes crazy, nasty, deviant sex music because he's a crazy, nasty sex deviant. These are not two separate parts of him.

"And also because R. Kelly is who he is. A talented musician — a person actually considered by many to be the most talented contemporary musician — and a man who, for years, used his considerable wealth and influence and status to prey on young Black girls. The word evil isn't often employed when characterizing him, because using that term to describe someone so popular, talented, charismatic, and handsome seems counterintuitive.


"Troubled? Maybe. Conflicted? Perhaps. Complicated? Definitely. Evil, however, seems to be taking it too far. But the acts he committed are plainly and patently evil. . . . ."

On The Root, Kirsten West Savali drew a comparison with the case of a white former police officer on trial on accusations that he abused black women. "Those of us who claim to care about the rape and silencing of black women and girls cannot speak out against former Oklahoma City Police Officer Daniel Holtzclaw, then flip the 'Ignition' when R. Kelly comes on. We don't get to do that — and we shouldn't want to, either," Savali wrote.

"For over a year, those of us who claim to love black women and girls have blasted the media for their marginal, at best, coverage of the Holtzclaw case. We have talked about the women (and one girl) he methodically chose because of their vulnerability and the likelihood that no one would believe them.


"We have gone over how he reportedly scoured low-income neighborhoods looking for black women who knew that they were no match against an officer of the law. At the root of that knowledge is not just his authority but the idea that in the eyes of society, these black women (and one underage girl) just do not matter. . . ."

Whenever the subject of R. Kelly is raised, so are music journalist Jim DeRogatis' investigations for the Chicago Sun-Times, in which he interviewed some of those who filed the allegations against Kelly.

"Nobody matters less to our society than young black women," DeRogatis said in a 2013 interview with the Village Voice. "Nobody. They have any complaint about the way they are treated: They are 'bitches, hos, and gold-diggers,' plain and simple. Kelly never misbehaved with a single white girl who sued him or that we know of. Mark Anthony Neal, the African-American scholar, makes this point: one white girl in Winnetka and the story would have been different."


Interviewer Jessica Hopper asked DeRogatis, "And they learned that after putting these suits forth and having them get nowhere? Do you think they didn't get traction because of the representation they had, or Kelly's power? Were certain elements in concert with that?"

"I think it was a lot of things, including the fact that Kelly was fully capable of intimidating people," DeRogatis replied. "These girls feared for their lives. They feared for the safety of their families. And these people talked to me not because I'm super reporter — we rang a lot of doorbells on the South and West sides, and people were eager to talk about this guy, because they wanted him to stop! . . ."

On, Aliya S. King confessed that she compartmentalizes when it comes to Kelly. "Not only do I listen to R. Kelly’s music regularly, I jam to it. Even knowing that what he allegedly did to at least one (and likely many more) young girls is reprehensible, disgusting and horrifying," she wrote.


King also told readers, "Here's all I know. R. Kelly's music is steeped in my soul. I can't take it out and put it on a shelf and ignore it forever — even knowing what he’s been accused of. . . ."

Clutch magazine: Did We All Forget R. Kelly Is a Pedophile During The Soul Train Awards?

Jamilah Lemieux, Ebony: Were YOU Wrong About R. Kelly? (Dec. 17, 2013)

Chay Liberté, The Medley Wins Big at 2015 Soul Train Awards

Annenberg to Spend $5 Million to Boost J-School Diversity

"The USC Annenberg School for Communication and Journalism today announced the launch of a long-term initiative that will increase access to cutting-edge journalism education and professional development for people from diverse ethnic and socio-economic backgrounds," the Annenberg Foundation announced Monday.


"Funded by a $5 million grant from the Annenberg Foundation, the initiative will provide a powerful pipeline of talent equipped to lead 21st century newsrooms.

"Recognizing that the most effective and innovative newsrooms are fed by diverse classrooms, the new Annenberg Leadership Initiative will focus on supporting journalism students and young professionals from communities that are underrepresented in the news industry.

"This generous gift speaks to The Annenberg Foundation's unshakable and admirable commitment to diversity in journalism," USC President C. L. 'Max' Nikias said.


" 'With newsrooms being reimagined for the digital age, and the breadth and shape of the news ever-changing, it is critical that young reporters and editors of different backgrounds be a part of the process. Such diversity encourages critical thinking, and critical thinking leads to more insightful journalism.'

"The program will offer scholarships to students and fellowships to early-career journalists, who will learn to harness emerging communication technologies in the state-of-the-art digital facilities of Wallis Annenberg Hall. . . ."

Hugo Balta, LinkedIn: Four Reasons Why Corporate Diversity Initiatives Fail

Younger, Older Whites Largely Live Segregated Lives

"At home, when socializing, and at work, white Americans report their lives are mostly spent around others of the same race," while "Younger blacks and Hispanics, however, are far more likely to say they have diverse social circles and neighborhoods," CNN polling director Jennifer Agiesta reported Wednesday. CNN and the Kaiser Family Foundation surveyed Americans on issues relating to race and ethnicity.


"About seven in 10 whites say they live (69%) or socialize with (68%) people who are mostly of the same race as them, and six in 10 employed whites have co-workers who are mostly other white people (60%). Hispanics and blacks are more apt to report more diverse neighborhoods, social circles and workplaces.

"Non-Hispanic whites make up a majority of the American public, so that gap isn't entirely a surprise. But what's most notable about these results is that there's no significant difference between younger whites (18-45) and older whites (45-64) who say they socialize with, work with or live around people who are all/mostly the same race as them.

"Senior whites, however, are a different story. Those 65 and older are more likely than their younger counterparts to say they live near or socialize with those of the same race. . . ."


Other key findings:

"Americans are more likely to consider racism a big problem today than they were 20 years ago. . . .

"The percentage who see racial tensions increasing has grown as well . . .

"Large numbers of black and Hispanic Americans say they have been treated unfairly in the last 30 days . . .


"African-Americans bear the bulk of the burden of incarceration in America . . . . "

In a follow-up story headlined, "Working while brown: What discrimination looks like now," Tanzina Vega reported Wednesday for, "According to a CNN/Kaiser Family Foundation poll on race in America, 69% of blacks and 57% of Hispanics say past and present discrimination is a major reason for the problems facing people of their racial or ethnic group.

"And 26% of blacks and 15% of Hispanics said they felt that they had been treated unfairly because of their race or ethnicity at their place of work in the past 30 days. . . ."


In another follow-up, titled "The steep cost of incarceration on women of color," Vega reported Sunday, "According to data from a CNN/Kaiser Family Foundation poll on race in America, 55% of black Americans said they either had been incarcerated themselves or had a close friend or family member who had been incarcerated compared to 36% of whites and 39% of Hispanics. Among these black Americans, nearly two-thirds said they earned less than $50,000 a year and only 21% said they had earned a college degree. . . ."

Conferees Say Blacks Gain From Reversing Climate Change

"Last week the U.S. Black Chambers, Inc., representing nearly 250,000 small businesses, launched the first in a series of conversations about the long-term health and economic benefits of reversing climate change to African-Americans," the National Newspaper Publishers Association News Service reported on Thursday. The session took place at Coppin State University in Baltimore.


"Revealing that climate change is a real threat, the afternoon also rallied support for President Obama's Clean Power Plan," the story continued.

NNPA also reported, "Nearly 40 percent of the six million Americans living close to coal-fired power plants are people of color, and are disproportionately African-American. It's the toxins from these plants that are responsible for thousands of premature deaths, higher risks of asthma attacks and other respiratory diseases, and hundreds of thousands of missed work and school days.

"But according to Environmental Protection Agency health scientists, the Clean Power Plan is set to cut carbon pollution nationwide 32 percent within 15 years, prevent up to 3,600 premature deaths, 1,700 heart attacks, 90,000 childhood asthma attacks and 300,000 missed school or work days. . . ."


Kristen Hare, Poynter Institute: 5 resources for covering climate change and COP21

ProPublica Finds Blacks Ignored in Gun Control Debate

"On a drizzly afternoon in January 2013, almost a month after the school shooting in Newtown, Connecticut, that left 20 first-graders dead, more than a dozen religious leaders assembled in Washington, D.C.," Lois Beckett reported Nov. 24 for ProPublica.


"They had been invited by the Obama administration to talk about what the country should do to address gun violence. Vice President Joe Biden had been meeting with victims and advocates all day, and he arrived so late that some in the room wondered whether he would come at all. When he finally walked in, the clergy started sharing their advice, full of pain, some of it personal.

" 'The incidents of Newtown are very tragic,' Michael McBride, a 37-year-old pastor from Berkeley, California, recalled telling Biden. 'But any meaningful conversation about addressing gun violence has to include urban gun violence.'

"McBride supported universal background checks. He supported an assault weapons ban. But he also wanted something else: a national push to save the lives of black men. In 2012, 90 people were killed in shootings like the ones in Newtown and Aurora, Colorado. That same year, nearly 6,000 black men were murdered with guns.


"Many people viewed inner-city shootings as an intractable problem. But for two years, McBride had been spreading awareness about Ceasefire, a nearly two-decades-old strategy that had upended how police departments dealt with gang violence. Under Ceasefire, police teamed up with community leaders to identify the young men most at risk of shooting someone or being shot, talked to them directly about the risks they faced, offered them support, and promised a tough crackdown on the groups that continued shooting.

"In Boston, the city that developed Ceasefire, the average monthly number of youth homicides dropped by 63 percent in the two years after it was launched. The U.S. Department of Justice's 'what works' website for crime policy had a green check mark next to Ceasefire, labeling it 'effective' — the highest rating and one few programs received. . . ."

But Beckett also wrote that ministers who worked with McBride received a blunt assessment from a White House staffer: There was no political will in the country to address inner-city violence.


She continued, "Mass shootings, unsurprisingly, drive the national debate on gun violence. But as horrific as these massacres are, by most counts they represent less than 1 percent of all gun homicides. America's high rate of gun murders isn't caused by events like Sandy Hook or the shootings this fall at a community college in Oregon. It's fueled by a relentless drumbeat of deaths of black men. . . ."

Ta-Nehisi Coates, the Atlantic: Chiraq And The 'Sex-Strike' Myth

Jarvis DeBerry, | the Times-Picayune: Of course black people are angrier at police shootings than other crime


Geraldo Loses Radio Show on New York's WABC-AM

"Geraldo Rivera found out in most unceremonious fashion that his time at WABC-AM is up,Richard Horgan reported Monday for FishbowlNY.

"In London with his family ahead of a planned crossover to Paris to cover this week's climate change conference, Rivera informed fans via Facebook on Nov. 25 that Cumulus Media CEO Mary Berner and New York VP Chad Lopez had decided not to honor his 'handshake deal' with former company head John Dickey. The journalist followed on Nov. 28 with a more extensive Facebook post titled 'This Is the End (Chapter One).' . . . "


Horgan also wrote, "Dominic Carter, a commentator for Verizon FiOS and RNN, stepped into Geraldo’s WABC-AM slot this morning. . . "

Craig Schwalb, program director for WABC Radio, did not respond to a question about whether Carter, a longtime New York political reporter, would fill the slot permanently.

Market Manager Chad Lopez told Radio Ink, "We offered Geraldo a new renewal commensurate with the value of his show, which he regretfully chose not to accept. We wish him the best," Radio Ink reported Monday.


Radio Ink: Geraldo Plans To Fight Cumulus Over Contract

Radio Ink: Geraldo Out At WABC

Open Letter in Ebony Warns Black Ministers About Trump

Ebony magazine posted an open letter from 100 black leaders Friday urging African American clergy to be wary when they met Monday with Republican presidential hopeful Donald Trump.


"We write to you as fellow clergy, community organizers, scholars, socially aware Christians, and/or concerned voters who are deeply confounded by your decision to participate in an upcoming telecast meeting with Presidential contender Donald Trump," the message began.

"Mr. Trump routinely uses overtly divisive and racist language on the campaign trail. Most recently, he admitted his supporters were justified for punching and kicking a Black protester who had attended a Trump rally with the intent to remind the crowd that 'Black Lives Matter.' Trump followed this action by tweeting inaccurate statistics about crime prevalence rates in Black communities — insinuating that Black people are more violent than other groups.

"Those statistics did not reflect the fact that most crimes are intraracial, meaning that most people do harm to people of their own race. They also did not speak to the crime of neoliberalism, capitalism, and white supremacy which kill thousands of black and nonblack people each day. . . ."


On Monday, "Dozens of African American pastors gathered behind closed doors with GOP frontrunner Donald Trump at his office in New York," Alice Ollstein reported for ThinkProgress. "The Trump campaign originally told press the pastors were going to endorse him, despite the fact that they had never promised to do so, which organizers chalked up to a 'miscommunication.' "

"Following the meeting, Pastor Mark Burns from South Carolina told reporters that while he identifies as a 'strong supporter' of Trump's, he wasn't yet ready to endorse. . . . . The pastors' meeting was going to be [live streamed] and open to press, but the Trump campaign clamped down following widespread backlash from others in the black faith community. . . ."

Editorial, New York Times: Mr. Trump's Applause Lies

Glynn A. Hill, Houston Chronicle: The violence built into 'All Lives Matter'

Lynette Holloway, NewsOne: This Is Why Donald Trump's Meeting With Black Ministers Imploded; Sharpton Calls For National Gun Violence Awareness Month


Mathew Ingram, Fortune: What Should the Media Do When Donald Trump Blatantly Lies?

Tony Norman, Pittsburgh Post-Gazette: Trump's dark carnival of lies and vulgarity

Charles P. Pierce, Esquire: The Powder Keg: The seething racial resentment of the Obama era is of an altogether different kind


Leonard Pitts Jr., Miami Herald: GOP brought this plague on itself

Eugene Robinson, Washington Post: Republicans are the ones hiding behind 'political correctness'(Nov. 23)

Eugene Robinson, Washington Post: The GOP's self-inflicted wounds

Kenneth T. Walsh, U.S. News & World Report: Trump Continues to Draw Criticism for His Comments


Erik Wemple, Washington Post: New Yorker's Auletta: Media will prostrate itself to get Donald Trump on air

This image was lost some time after publication.

John H. Hicks Dies, First Black Reporter at Post-Dispatch

"John H. Hicks didn't think it was a big deal that he made journalism history in St. Louis," Valerie Schremp Hahn reported Wednesday for the St. Louis Post-Dispatch. "He hadn’t planned to work at the St. Louis Post-Dispatch, and when he interviewed for the job, he didn't think he would get it.


"Mr. Hicks was hired in 1949 as the newspaper's first black reporter. He went on from the paper to become a diplomat to several countries, including Germany, Vietnam and Liberia. He died of pneumonia on Nov. 18, 2015, in Washington, where he had retired." He was 87.

"Mr. Hicks grew up in East St. Louis during the Great Depression. He played tuba in the high school jazz band with Miles Davis, who played trumpet.

"In 1993, he was inducted into the Greater St. Louis Association of Black Journalists Hall of Fame. In an interview the same year with Post-Dispatch columnist Greg Freeman, Mr. Hicks recalled enrolling as a pre-journalism student at the University of Illinois. One friend jokingly asked him, 'What are you going to do with a journalism degree? Work at the Post-Dispatch?'


"He got an interview with the paper through a college job connection. Nobody ever told him the paper wanted to hire a black reporter, though he suspected that was the case, he told Freeman. . . . "

A son, Jonathan P. Hicks, "followed in his father’s footsteps and was a reporter at The New York Times for 24 years. He died last year, at age 58," Hahn reported.

Funeral services are to be held Wednesday in Washington.

Short Takes

"On November 17th the University of Montana announced that it would be cutting 201 jobs in a major restructuring. The School of Journalism was one of the programs targeted in these cuts," according to an open letter from the School of Journalism faculty published Nov. 24 on Among those potentially put at risk is Jason Begay, president of the Native American Journalists Association, who edits the School of Journalism's "perennially award-winning Native News Project, the only statewide journalism project that goes to each of Montana's seven reservations annually to report in-depth on the lives of the state's first inhabitants. . . ."


"NBA superstar Kobe Bryant scooped the world — and mainstream news outlets — Sunday by announcing he'd retire at season's end on a relatively new sports site founded by former New York Yankees shortstop Derek Jeter, Benjamin Mullin reported Monday for the Poynter Institute. Mullin also wrote, "His announcement was highly unusual. It wasn't printed in the pages of a magazine or broadcast on a live television special. Instead, it took the form of a short poem directly addressing the sport of basketball that waxed nostalgic about his days as a young player. . . ."

Adrian Seay and Felicia Mason are among seven newsroom employees retiring from the Daily Press in Newport News, Va., Marisa J. Porto, vice president of content for the Daily Press Media Group, wrote Friday for the Daily Press. Porto praised Seay's obituary writing, saying she "treated readers as if they were her own family," and said Mason "has held almost every editing job at the Daily Press — except in sports. With almost 30 years in the newsroom, she's been the keeper of record. . . ."

The National Lesbian & Gay Journalists Association has received a grant renewable for up to five years from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention to deliver journalism training that will enhance strategies and skills in covering HIV/AIDS, NLGJA announced on Monday. The announcement also said, "Other grantees include organizations addressing media or health issues and/or focused on serving the African American, Latino and LGBT communities. With the grant to NLGJA, $130,000 in the first year through fall 2016, the association of LGBT journalists will provide a series of in-person and web-based trainings, fellowships and specially designed online resources. . . ."


"Presidential candidate Hillary Clinton on Tuesday vowed to stop using the term 'illegal immigrant' when referring to those who have entered the U.S. illegally," Debbi Baker reported Wednesday for the San Diego Union Tribune. "In a live Q & A on Noticias Telemundo's Facebook page, the [Democratic] frontrunner was queried about the term by activist and Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist Jose Antonio Vargas, who famously revealed that he was an unauthorized immigrant in a 2011 essay in The New York Times Magazine. . . ."

" 'SportsCenter' anchor Robert Flores took a stunning shot Monday at ESPN colleagues from 'First Take,' suggesting the lightning-rod morning debate show — driven by chief squawkers, Skip Bayless and Stephen A. Smith — promoted a harmful racial double standard when it came to Panthers quarterback Cam Newton," Jonathan Lehman reported Monday for the New York Post.

"We're moving," Ruben Rosario, columnist for the Pioneer Press in St. Paul, Minn., told readers on Saturday. "On Monday, yours truly and other Pioneer Press employees will have new digs — a very large 'suite' taking up a floor in the glassy-looking Comcast building across the river from downtown St. Paul. . . ."


"Longtime reporter Janet Wu has left WHDH-TV NBC 7 in Boston, we have learned," Derrick Santos reported Wednesday for New England One. "In her time at 7 News, Janet has filled a variety of roles including covering medical news and special assignments, and was most recently a general assignment reporter and fill-in anchor. . . ." Santos also wrote, "As for what's next, Janet tells New England One that she is currently weighing offers. She will be continuing her charity work in Boston, and still be teaching at Emerson. . . ."

In London, "The Times has undermined its red-top stablemate by admitting that its story about a controversial Sun poll run, which stated that 'one in five Muslims sympathises with [ISIS]', was misleading," Roy Greenslade reported Thursday for the Guardian.

"Photographic [evidence] recently helped a New York trial judge find a New York City police officer guilty of fabricating a record to justify his arrest of a freelance photographer back in 2012," Soo Rin Kim reported Nov. 20 for the Reporters Committee for Freedom of the Press. "Officer Michael Ackermann arrested New York Times freelancer Robert Stolarik as he was taking pictures of a street fight in the Bronx. Ackermann testified in court documents that officers had been giving out a number of disperse orders when Stolarik blinded Ackermann and interfered with arrests of others on the street by flashing his camera light at the officer's face. . . ." But Kim also wrote, "further investigations with the photographic [evidence] turned the situation around. Not only did the photos Stolarik kept shooting throughout the arrest show several officers using force on top of Stolarik, but the metadata of the photos also revealed that the photographer in fact was not using a flash at that time. . . ."


"Reporter Ric Romero is retiring from KABC in Los Angeles after 20 years with the station," Veronica Villafañe reported Wednesday for her Media Moves site. "Today is his last day. Rick has most recently been specializing consumer reports focusing on technology and the Internet, as well as investigating consumer fraud for his ABC7 On Your Side reports. . . ."

Remembrances of World War II rarely address the impact on British colonies such as India, according to a New York Times Sunday Book Review piece reviewing "India at War" by Yasmin Khan. Ramachandra Guha wrote Friday, "The events narrated in 'India at War' amount to a devastating indictment of empire. At the best of times, colonial rule delivered little to its subjects. The people of India were poor, uneducated and lacking access to health facilities. . . . Once the conflict started, the rulers turned actively coercive. . . . To hamper a possible Japanese invasion of eastern India, the British destroyed some 20,000 small boats, used to catch fish and transport essential commodities to villages not connected by road. This greatly undermined the rural economy, and may have contributed to the Great Bengal Famine of 1943, in which several million perished. . . ."

" Turkish journalists working in the United States are expressing growing concerns over a sweeping media crackdown in their home country," Anthony Advingula reported Saturday for New America Media. "Many worry the crackdown will curtail press freedoms in Turkey and sever key media links to the Turkish American community here. . . . " Meanwhile, "Thousands gathered across Istanbul on Friday to protest the arrest of two prominent journalists on charges of espionage over a report alleging that the country's intelligence services had sent arms shipments to Islamist rebels in Syria," Ceylan Yeginsu reported for the New York Times.