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What speech did the News-Times hear?

Monday, May 05, 2008
Time: 10:36 AM

Sharpton
"I don't lie to folks and then deport them...I'm coming to a town of switch -- and -- bait."

From Rev. Al Sharpton's ONLY reference to immigration in a 55 minute speech, this was plastered on the News-Times website...

Picture 13

Now, anyone who was in attendance yesterday at New Hope Baptist Church KNOWS that the News-Times' headline is not only misleading, it's flat-out false. Rev. Sharpton didn't go into detail about immigration NOR did he announced to the congregation that he was planning to be arrested in regards to the Sean Bell case in New York (Rev. Ivon Pitts made this announcement AFTER Rev. Sharpton's sermon and even stated that Rev. Sharpton had no idea that he (Rev. Pitts) was going to bring this topic up. Why? Because, as Rev. Sharpton stated, he real intention was to come to Danbury and help celebrate New Hope Baptist Church's 113th anniversary.

Now to Brian Koonz's credit, he did interview Rev. Sharpton after the sermon but in terms of his speech, I find it amazing that five second remark of a larger 55 minute speech makes it to the headline of the article when the real point of his visit (as he stated) was to celebrate New Hope Baptist Church's 113th anniversary.

Here's what I'm going to do for you...

Now, I was going to spend my day uploading video footage of all the budget ad-hoc committees and point out some VERY ALARMING things about this year's budget (a.k.a we're getting screwed BIGTIME) BUT instead, I'm going to process and upload the video of Rev. Sharpton's ENTIRE speech for you to see with your own eyes. Afterwards, you decide if the News-Times dropped the ball with their headline.

UPDATE: Just got word that WLAD's report was even worse than the News-Times headline. In fact, I don't even remember seeing anyone from WLAD at the church (although I could be wrong since the place was so full).

I'm getting calls from people who were at the church who are extermely upset over today's headline in the News-Times as well as at WLAD. If you were at the church and are as upset as I am, please leave a comment and help set the story straight.

The video is still compressing and should be available for viewing later this afternoon.

UPDATE 2: I'm getting numerous complaints from people who have seen some of the most disgusting, racist comments on the News-Times article on Rev. Sharpton. I'm writing this as a warning to those in the media that read this site that your coverage of the sermon is creating a very hostile situation within the area and maybe you should consider making a correction before things get worse.

Hats off to the online editor who deleting them but again, this reinforces the notion that the entire comment system on the News-Times should either be removed altogether and the newspaper should revert to the forums format.

The News-Times has posted Koonz's video footage from yesterday and in it, you'll see the ONLY thing Sharpton made in regards to immigration during his speech.



Now, as I stated earlier, THIS IS THE ONLY REFERENCE TO IMMIGRATION MADE IN SHARPTON'S SERMON. This being the case, how is it that the News-Times ran such a misleading and blatantly false headline which totally misses the point of Rev. Sharpton's appearance? Furthermore, if the reports I heard about WLAD's news report is correct, I will do all I can to make sure that they issue a correction.

The media's coverage of this event is shameful to say the least. How the editors at the News-Times and the people at WLAD can spin this Sharpton event from what it was (a celebration of a church) to illegal immigration is probably one of the lowest moments of this year. Once you see my video OF THE ENTIRE SPEECH, you'll see what I mean and understand why I'm so upset (as well as EVERYONE ELSE who was at the service).

UPDATE 3: I'm getting a flood of complaints in my inbox about the whole episode. Again, it's better if you direct your rants to the comments section.

For those who wish to complain to the media, here's the contact info:
WLAD:
Berkshire Broadcasting Corporation
Danbury, CT 06810

Reporter: Debbie Hanley.
Phone number: 203 744-4800
Email address: WLADnewsroom@yahoo.com

News-Times:
Publisher: David R. Dear, Jr.
Phone: 203 731-3401
Email: ddear@newstimes.com

Editor: Art Cummings
Phone: 203 731-3351
Email: acummings@newstimes.com

Metro editor: Valerie Roth
Phone: 203 731-3370
Email: vroth@newstimes.com

Reporter: Brian Koonz
Phone: 203 731-3379
Email: bkoonz@newstimes.com
When calling, PLEASE BE POLITE. I know there are a lot of people are are very upset right now but just take a deep breath and count to ten before calling.

Brian Koonz actually is a great reporter but elements of his story are factually incorrect and if my journalistic background serves me right, he didn't have anything to do with the headline or sub-headline.

WLAD, on the other hand, just completely f'd up the story and should be ashamed of themselves...

UPDATE 4: Okay, WLAD updated their 5 PM report to include an interview from Rev. Pitts and made a point to say that 98 percent of Rev. Sharpton's speech had NOTHING TO DO WITH immigration. That's better than the report that pissed everyone off earlier today. I'll post the audio of the updated report later.

UPDATE 5: By request, here's WLAD's 5PM report, which is notably different from what was reported this morning.



NOTE: In this post, I mentioned that people heard the WLAD report during noon when in fact it was in the morning. I received most of the complaints about WLAD's coverage after 12:00 which led me to believe that the people who emailed me where in act talking about the noon report. My bad.

posted by ctblogger at 10:36 AM | Permalink|

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