I’ve read a number of media articles and watched plenty of media clips about the mom shot to death by police in D.C. while her child sat in the back seat. I’m horrified that this ailing woman was put down like a mad dog.
It almost seems that the legal authorities are competing with the news media to put out public -relations minded narratives with little regard for fact checking. The CNN version here several times attributes the “new” information to “a law enforcement source,” unnamed at least four times in a single story.
“The source told CNN that Carey (Miriam Carey, the D.C. mom) left a letter addressed to the boyfriend at her apartment and that it appeared to contain white powder,” writes the reporter.
So you have an unnamed source providing dark suggestions of a terror plot involving what “appeared to contain white powder.” “Appeared” to contain white powder? Is CNN actually staking its news reputation on these ephemeral shape shifting appearances? Trust me. The “white powder” story will turn out to be a law enforcement hallucination.
CNN was not alone by any means. Fox News’ Bret Baier reported during his daily broadcast that the mentally stressed mom had “got out of the car and started firing,” even though it turned out later she had no gun. NBC Washington noted early reports that said “Carey had exited her vehicle and fired shots.”
Other early reports had it that the woman, immediately following the first incidents, was “in custody.” There’s a grain of truth in that “in custody” report.
Being shot dead is perhaps a type of being “in custody.” But it wasn’t until approximately three hours later that D.C. police chief Cathy Lanier told reporters the woman had been shot dead.
That was one fact that wouldn’t change so why deceive the media even for three hours? Was it because three hours was necessary to get Secret Service and capitol cops on the same page with the same narrative? Perhaps the time was needed to consult lawyers and prepare for legal damage control.
The story has jelled now into its simplest form. Miriam Carey was, for some reason, emotionally disturbed and freaked out during her confrontation with the White House road guards. We don’t know if she exchanged words with security cops because no reporters seem to ask.
She then does a three-point jam, hitting a police vehicle and racing away. She stops or slows again, and security fires the first volley, whereupon she takes off again. A bit later, the authorities fire upon her again and she is dead-err, “in custody.”
Of course, everyone recognizes it was a mistake to shoot to death an unarmed emotionally disturbed mom with a one-year-old in the back seat. Therefore, we must offer some well-known justifications for it:
We are at war with terrorism. The president and the public were in mortal danger. Everything looks clear in hindsight but most of us never have to choose between shooting or not! The car may have been filled with explosives. The dead woman had injured police officer(s) in her mad flight (although we don’t have details). A car is a lethal weapon (at least that one is accurate). Yada-yada-yada.
The justifications are easy to comprehend from the law enforcement standpoint, but why isn’t the media concerned with finding the facts? There are many questions to be asked:
Did Mariam Carey have a verbal exchange with security cops? If so, what was the nature of the exchange? Who made the decision to shoot and why? With police officers in the video so close to the vehicle, did anyone glance into the back seat? Did police officers believe Carey was a suicide bomber?
It’s possible there are reasonable answers to obvious questions, but it’s incredible that no one asks them, and no one demands answers. Too many people are unwilling to admit of the possibility of a bad shooting.
The public is so accustomed to misinformation that it stops caring or paying attention. It’s just another chaotic patchwork quilt of modern madness, they think to themselves.
By the time the “final investigations” are complete, most everyone’s forgotten what happened in the first place. A new tragedy soon takes its place, complete with new and questionable attributions.
In time, we become mere bystanders in our own lives.