Indigenous Peoples and Human Rights 2020

Thursday, June 17, 2010

On the Border: News Reporters Now Enemies of Truth

By Brenda Norrell
People who live along the US/Mexico border have a new online patrol. We are all now scouts on the lookout for the news reporters, television crews and filmmakers who come to the border to promote themselves and tell the same old worn out story about drug running along the border.

The underlying theme of their stories is always the same: White people are good and brown people are bad.

If the news reporter is really pumped up by border hysteria, they like to include Native Americans, including Tohono O'odham and Mohawks, into their US flag-waving articles, like this one:

These news reporters always leave out this vital fact: The narcotics pipeline exists because of the demand for illegal drugs in the US.

News reporters certainly don't want to investigate the fact that the most notorious killers, now running the drug war in Mexico, the Zetas, were trained by US Special Forces.

These same news reporters don't like to report that US soldiers have been heavily involved in running drugs. The FBI had to shut down the sting operation, Operation Lively Green, because so many US soldiers wanted to run cocaine from Nogales to Phoenix. After arresting Army recruiters in high schools, Airforce soldiers, a prison guard and a Nogales police officer, the FBI halted the sting operation. No doubt the soldiers are still running drugs, without being arrested.

There have been no probes made public as to whether the unmanned US drones, in the US and Afghanistan, are now being used to transport US drugs, in the same manner that body bags were used by the US during the Vietnam war.

In their reports, news reporters don't like to expose the fact that US Border Patrol agents murder children throwing rocks and beat and rape people of color along the border. These facts throw off the tidy news formula of news reporters.

Most news reporters had rather tip-toe around the fact that lawmaking in the state of Arizona has now been taken over by a racist governor and a band of Nazi-type legislators. News reporters had rather sensationalize Sheriff Joe Arpaio and describe him as "colorful," rather than report on the human rights and civil rights violations and lawsuits filed against him.

For the Arizona governor and racist crew at the state capitol, imprisoning people of color means more profits for their friends in the private prison industry and more jobs for Arizona. Pinal County boasts that its CCA private prisons are the number one employer in the county.

So, the online patrol continues for those news reporters coming to town with their fixed agenda and fixed formulas. They'll stay in the city for a few days at a hotel, file their story and come away with a good pat on the back for themselves, as if they now really know and understand the people of the border.

Even worse, and more inaccurate, are those news reporters who try to fake it. They sit in their easy chairs in distant cities, plagiarize other news reporters, make a few phone calls, add a free photo, and pretend that they are here covering the story.

For border residents, news reporters are now considered among the enemies of the people and truth.

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