December 14, 2012 | Filed Under Crime, Democrats/Leftists, Ethics, Government, Huffington Post, Journalism, Liberals, Media, Media Bias, Michigan, Progressives, Public Employees Unions, Right To Work, Unions, Warner Todd Huston | Comments Off
-By Warner Todd Huston
Huffington Post is being accused of purposefully misquoting Steven Crowder, the victim of violence perpetrated by union thugs during protests over Michigan’s worker’s rights legislation, and blaming Crowder for being attacked.
In a December 11 piece by Dave Jamieson, Huffington Post’s “workplace reporter,” Crowder is misquoted at least once. Worse, instead of having Crowder explain himself, his actions are “explained” by a union tough that was on the scene.
The whole story was “reported” from the union perspective and painted Crowder as a “provocateur” who’s main goal was “to get punched.”
The whole of the story was originally presented from the perspective of union member Ken Spitzley, a state agriculture department employee, who claimed he witnessed Crowder’s actions that day. According to Spitzley, Crowder was only there only to “provoke” the union thugs. “There was no question he was there just to start a fight, to start some kind of trouble,” Jamieson reports.
Jamieson then misleadingly quotes Crowder as saying, “‘I definitely provoked them,’ Crowder said. ‘I was asking them basic questions.'”
Seems like an admission, no? Actually, it isn’t. Crowder was saying that the “provocation” was but a “question.” Crowder was not admitting to “provoking” them, but was saying in his sarcastic way that it was the union member’s lack of civility that was “provoked” by a mere question.
Then Jamieson gets to a particular confrontation between Crowder and one of the union thugs.
Sptizley offered one specific anecdote that Crowder disputed. According to Spitzley, Crowder had an exchange with two pro-union men wearing blue jeans, hard hats and Carhartt clothing. One of the men accused Crowder of working for Amway, the family company of Michigan businessman Dick DeVos. Crowder joked that he sells soap.
“He said, ‘I sell soap. I should sell you some,'” Spitzley said, quoting Crowder.
Crowder claims that “workplace reporter” Jamieson re-arranged his quote to make it appear to say something far different than he actually said.
In an email, Crowder told Breitbart,
No I didn’t say that!! I told him exactly: “What?! I never said that.” They accused me of being paid by the Devos’ and that I worked for Amway. I brushed it off saying something to the effect of “Yeah, yeah I sell soap for a living, whatever.”
Again, it should be pointed out that one of the things that Crowder does for a living is stand up comedy. This is also something that Jamieson does not explain to his readers so that they can come to understand his sarcastic explanation of the incident.
Jamieson claims that the video Crowder posted showing the attack was “edited,” but doesn’t mention that there are at least a half dozen other videos out there clearly showing that it was the unionistas that were the more threatening party that day.
After Jamieson posted the story, Crowder contacted him demanding that changes be made to the screed to better reflect the truth. Jamieson did make some alterations to the story, but he made no effort to clarify Crowder’s position or meaning and stuck to the original flavor of the story, that of blaming Crowder for “provoking” the union thugs.
Interestingly, the flavor Jamieson imbues in this story — that of blaming the victim for the crime — seems quite reminiscent of the claim that women who dress nicely somehow “provoke” threats of rape against them, doesn’t it?
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Warner Todd Huston is a Chicago based freelance writer. He has been writing opinion editorials and social criticism since early 2001 and before that he wrote articles on U.S. history for several small American magazines. His political columns are featured on many websites such as Andrew Breitbart’s BigGovernment.com, BigHollywood.com, and BigJournalism.com, as well as RightWingNews.com, RightPundits.com, CanadaFreePress.com, StoptheACLU.com, AmericanDaily.com, among many, many others. Mr. Huston is also endlessly amused that one of his articles formed the basis of an article in Germany’s Der Spiegel Magazine in 2008.
For a full bio, please CLICK HERE.
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