Greg Gutfeld: The toxic, media-driven narrative about policing rides again

SARA SIDNER, CNN, APRIL 12: You may notice that my eyes are very watery, um, that is because they have just, like, shot a huge amount of gas. It’s CS gas. It’s really the strongest I have ever had stood in before during a protest. And we were all consumed by it. 

SIDNER [later]: Now you can see —

MAN [interrupting]: Now you can see y’all be twisting up the story.

MAN URGES PRESS TO LEAVE MINNESOTA WITH EXPLETIVE-LACED RANT TO CNN REPORTER

SIDNER: You want to talk to me? You want to talk to me? OK, cool … Tell me what you think about what’s going on.

MAN: What I think about this is, all the press and all the extra s— y’all do makes this worse … Y’all need to get up outta here with all that twistin’ up the media and s—.

SIDNER [later]: We’re live here … I’m live right now.

MAN: I don’t care if you’re live or not, get away from here with all that media s— that y’all doing.

MINNESOTA PROTESTER TELLS FOX REPORTER: ONLY WAY THINGS CHANGE IS ‘IF PEOPLE START THROWING THINGS’

SIDNER: We’re with CNN.

MAN: Take that camera all the way up there. Check it out. Y’all doing all of this s—.. to make people look all crazier than what the f— they are.

I don’t know about the guy’s possible anger about some of the unseemly aspects of the protests being exposed on TV. But when it comes to CNN, they’re more obsessed with the police trying to stop the looting than the looting itself.

Either way, the dude spoke truth. If you look at any news event, how much value is added when the media shows up? Does it make it better, like adding Baileys to a cup of coffee? Or does it make it worse, like adding anchovies to a pizza? What happens if they decided not to amplify the conflict?

Well, that would be stupid because their viewers don’t want to see that. They want to see the conflict. They’ll even pretend the conflict isn’t conflict to support the further conflict. They fan the flames, then let it rage out of control. Why should they care? It gets the views and it’s not their neighborhoods burning down.

And so the physical substrate that defines journalism has changed. There is no commitment to actual community, to easing strife. It’s only to intensify the burn. So as cops deal with protests and looters nail a bunch of stores and the destruction spreads, it’s now part of the process: video followed by outrage, followed by coverage of outrage. It’s as predictable as CNN’s programing because it is. It’s a scene that’s gone from shocking to expected to gleefully anticipated by the media, as familiar as a rerun of “Friends, except it’s the one where Rachel sets Central Perk ablaze.

The explanation for the shooting of Daunte Wright is that the officer mistook her gun for a Taser. And when you see the video, you can tell she realizes it almost immediately. Tragic? Yes. Acceptable? Absolutely not. But in this climate, mistakes don’t exist. We must act as if a horrible, tragic error was, in fact intentional, because that’s how every event becomes proof of a preordained conclusion, because the truth might get in the way of the narrative. It’s rule number one when writing a movie script — give them something exciting within the first four pages — and every police video fulfills that requirement.

So where do the Dems stand on this? Rep. Rashida Tlaib, D-Mich., demands an end to all policing in a tweet, likely from a safe location where police don’t have to be a regular presence and the National Guard are on speed dial. It reads: “It wasn’t an accident. Policing in our country is inherently and intentionally racist. Daunte Wright was met with aggression and violence. I am done with those who condone government funded murder. No more policing, incarceration and militarization. It can’t be reformed.”

Well, that’s a good point. No more police means no more disobeying police. So that problem is solved. But does it make sense? God, no. It’s not supposed to. Out of the tens of millions of traffic stops a year, you get mistakes and tragedies. The only response to this now is amplification, magnification, and ruin.

With just 24 incidents out of millions of stops, we could still cover this chaos at least twice a month. When you ignore context, you have a lot of time to fill. It’s the devil’s slot machine. Sure, it hits a horrible jackpot every 10,000 pulls, but we aren’t going to show you the other 9,999 outcomes. Who would sit through a 24/7 channel of safe traffic stops? Hell, they canceled the highly rated “Live PD” for showing actual police work, all because it didn’t fit the narrative (the opposite of why Anderson Cooper stays on).

So the only solution is to reduce those bad outcomes to absolute zero, even though a risk-free life isn’t possible, and the numbers are so small you can actually read about each case and see how different each one is. But that’s too much work with little payoff.

So instead, let’s end the police. That’s the only way to keep police interactions from turning into tragedy. But what other risks explode when that one stat falls to zero? Who suffers then? Minority communities and minority businesses.

According to the Gallup Center on Black Voices, Black Americans want the same or more police presence in their neighborhoods, and many will be left defenseless in the real world, outside gated communities and ivory towers. I guarantee you Jeff Zucker’s house has more security cameras than El Chapo did.

As citizens suffer, elites can turn to private security because they can afford it. Or like Tlaib, they could just stick us with the bill.

This article is adapted from Greg Gutfeld’s opening monologue on the April 14, 2021 edition of “Gutfeld!”

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