The BBC's Charter and its Producers Guidelines state:
...'Due impartiality lies at the heart of the BBC. All programs and services should be open minded, fair and show a respect for truth? [BBC reports should] contain comprehensive, authoritative and impartial coverage of news and current affairs in the United Kingdom and throughout the world??
I can just imagine if the Israelis had done something similar to a black or Palestinian woman with a 1 year old baby in her car what the BBC would have done with it. But here they clearly avoid mentioning that detail.
In this case it appears the police have been particularly heavy handed. Perhaps riots are feared as a consequence.
Whatever the reason, it is not for the BBC to purposefully withhold facts in their reporting. They certainly don't worry about consequences when it suits them.
When I read the initial headlines here (not my fave Internet sites) I was under the impression the police shot a person who was an imminent threat and possibly armed. Now we know, if you have a heart attack, desperately try to escape bad people or just lose touch with reality and happen to go through those barriers, you will probably be slaughtered.
And this happened in the most strict gun control area in our nation.
I'm sure you are kept more up to date by your media on this story than we are Steevo. If you know of anything we should be made aware of relevant to it please keep us posted
What is so strange is that usually the BBC would jump in where a black person was shot by police. Here we have a black woman with a year old child in the car, clearly not firing a weapon at the time, and the police decimated her. But the BBC prefer to avoid mentioning that little detail. I'm wondering why.
Of course, I understood your initial point and should've made that clear. Actually there isn't that much in our mainstream media after the fact and that's revealing in and of itself. It was headlined for all to wonder as a possible if not likely threat, with the implication a dangerous person acting against the White House (President Barack Obama). Dangerous people in our society are increasingly portrayed as right-wing haters and tea party types. Obama and the symbol of our government (his government) the potential victim must be protected.
So not much discussion other than on Foxnews, the Internet and talk radio questioning the deadly usage of force against a fellow citizen who was not deadly.
looks like Obama is in a quandary about this. One would expect him to stand up for 'one of his own' gunned down in this manner. but then he would have to criticize the forces out there who protect him.
Peter Foster, the US editor for The Telegraph, is raising the points that certainly the BBC is anxious to avoid.
The family of Miriam Carey, the mentally disturbed woman who was shot by police up on Capitol Hill last week, has been on TV demanding answers about why she was shot.
Ms Carey, 34, died in a hail of gunfire after she led police on a high speed car chase from the White House up to Congress, failing to stop at least twice when officers pointed their guns at her. Here 18-month-old daughter was in the back of the car when her mother was killed.
You could argue, that anyone who behaves like that in an area as sensitive as Capitol Hill gets what's coming to them, but if you're mentally disturbed (she to have believed Barack Obama was stalking her) then by definition you are not rational.
This woman did not have a gun. She did not wave anything that looked like a gun at police, so far as we know – and if she had, you can bet the police would have made a big deal of it. She certainly did not fire at the police. And yet they still gunned her down.
Was this really necessary? Was there really no other way to stop that car? Clearly it needed to be stopped, as this woman was a danger to pedestrians, if nothing else.
Given the concrete barriers that protect access to the Capitol buildings themselves, she was never going to get in there so what about deploying a "stinger" – one of those spiky thing that shreds a car's tires? Or using other cars to ram her off the road?
Those questions need asking because too often the US police and the media doesn't bother. They just accept uncritically that that's how the police (heroes, inevitably) should behave.
The young child who watched her mother being shot to death was, according to CNN, "rescued" from the car; an interesting turn of phrase which belies this mindset. Perhaps more questions would be being asked if the child had died?
As I've written before, the problem is not just that the media seems to accept guns being used in this way, but so do the law enforcement agencies who have an absolutely terrible – almost non-existent, in fact – record in disciplining trigger-happy officers.
Take a look at this recent New York Times analysis of FBI shooting of 150 lethal incidents involving FBI officers. Law enforcement was deemed faultless every time. You don't need to break out your copy of Freakonomics to know that doesn't pass the sniff test, unless the bar to using lethal force is set incredibly, dangerously low.
The FBI still hasn't provided proper explanation, for example, of how or why it shot 27-year-old Ibragim Todashev when he was being interrogated at his home in Florida over his possible links to the surviving Boston bomber. His father, the ACLU and others are rightly suing to try and find out more.
Like the woman, Todashev was also not carrying a firearm, although he might have had a knife, or a broomhandle, or a metal pole, depending on which half-cocked story that was briefed by FBI at the time you chose to believe – or not.
The fact, of course that the younger Boston bomber Tamerlan Tsarnaev was even alive was a small miracle, after the Boston cops unloaded their weapons into the boat where he was hiding, even though he wasn't armed either – so presumably didn't shoot first, or threaten them or wave a gun at them.
Again, virtually no questions were asked about that incidents which senior officers dismissed as "fog of war" or "contagious fire". This should translate as "my trigger-happy officers were engaged in massive collective act of indiscipline that unnecessarily endangered the public and the investigation into the most serious terror incident on the US mainland since September 11", but of course, it doesn't.
I could go on. Remember last year's Empire State shooting where nine passers-by were shot or wounded by NYPD officers who were tackling a man who was, at least, armed with a firearm. The patrolmen fired sixteen shots, of which only three hit their target.
One of the victims of that shooting, a North Carolina student who was shot in the hip, is suing the NYPD, but the already the police commissioner Raymond Kelly and the mayor Michael Bloomberg have come out and said that the cops "followed proper protocol".
The wider question common to all these cases is really about the acceptable level of violence in American society – about where the parameters of the debate are set when it comes to gun use. In the US, certainly in comparison to other developed-world countries, the tolerance is extraordinarily high. As is the near-uncritical worship of anyone who wears a uniform.
Both of which means the pressure for accountability on law enforcement agencies from the public or the media is incredibly weak. And since environment is so permissive and the law enforcement agencies don't police themselves, the gun is too often the weapon of first resort.
Frankly I suspect the case is all but closed, it's not an issue because it wasn't made one. What discussion there has been in 'alternative' media of which I almost include Fox isn't much other than pointing out yet another action and reality by our present government that doesn't surprise those of us in the know. Our mainstream media will relegate it to another blip most in the general populace will not think to think about.
And he doesn't have to stand up for 'one of his own'. Black Americans overwhelmingly stand up for him - a no-brainer he readily works. So if this was a situation that could be exploited to his advantage, then he would make the stand.
Even though Foster mentioned the police as a problem I wanna emphasize that law abiding citizens who legally carry and/or own registered firearms are not the problem by and large. Believe it or not we've had a reduction in firearm-related deaths these past years - yet an increase in sensational stories. But we are seeing the militarization of our police and security agencies armed to the teeth, increasingly taking a brown-shirt attitude and posing quite a concern for many if not most of the people I read commenting. This is Barack Obama's America where submission to governmental authority is high priority.
At present, the BBC is only answerable to itself in deciding its standards and coverage. How does it measure up to what you consider good quality, and impartial and unbiased reporting as required by its charter? All TV viewers in the UK are forced by law to pay for this 'service'. Do you believe that what is received truly 'serves' the society, - or merely increases the problems within it?
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