The New York Times ignored 18 deaths, countless injuries and nearly $2 billion in property damage nationwide in an article slamming Republican bills designed to stop what the liberal newspaper considered mostly “peaceful” protests.
The Times published a report originally headlined, “How the G.O.P. Is Creating Harsher Penalties for Protesters,” that was eventually titled “G.O.P. Bills Target Protesters (and Absolve Motorists Who Hit Them),” in the online version. It detailed how “Republican-led states are introducing punitive new measures governing protests” in the wake of former policeman Derek Chauvin’s conviction for the murder of George Floyd.
The story blasted Oklahoma, Iowa, Indiana, Florida and other states for steps taken to prevent rioting, looting and violence that sometimes occurs during civil rights demonstrations and other forms of protests. Protests and riots following the 2020 killing of Floyd resulted in at least 18 deaths, $350 million worth of property damage in the Minneapolis area and nearly $2 billion nationwide.
However, the Times didn’t highlight deaths or significant property damage when downplaying the protests as mostly peaceful.
“While Democrats seized on Mr. Floyd’s death last May to highlight racism in policing and other forms of social injustice, Republicans responded to a summer of protests by proposing a raft of punitive new measures governing the right to lawfully assemble,” the Times reported, before dismissing the violence and destruction tied to the protests.
“Some, like [Florida Gov. Ron] DeSantis, are labeling them ‘anti-riot’ bills, conflating the right to peaceful protest with the rioting and looting that sometimes resulted from such protests,” the Times reported.
The Times then claimed, “The laws carry forward the hyperbolic message Republicans have been pushing in the 11 months since Black Lives Matter protests against racial injustice swept the country: that Democrats are tolerant of violent and criminal actions from those who protest against racial injustice.”
The newspaper essentially began a public relations campaign for protestors, reporting “the overwhelming majority of last summer’s nationwide Black Lives Matter protests were peaceful,” “more than 96 percent involved no property damage or police injuries” and “most of the protests held across Florida last summer were also peaceful.”
The paper did note that “a few in Miami, Tampa and Jacksonville produced some episodes of violence, including the burning of a police car and a sporting goods store,” but failed to mention the deaths and significant property damage that occurred throughout the nation.
The Times knocked a Florida law for increasing the penalties of someone caught toppling a monument by noting that “Confederate ones” are included.