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Saturday, April 21, 2007 

NBC condemned for running video of VTech murderer

NBC's decision to broadcast the video of Cho Seung-Hui's crazy mishmash has rightly met with condemnation:
BLACKSBURG, Va.–The worldwide media platform provided to the killer in the worst mass shooting in American history heaped pain upon pain for grieving families here and drew condemnation from Virginia police.

But the decision by NBC News to broadcast parts of Cho Seung-Hui's rambling manifesto – followed by much of the world's media – drew a mixed reaction on the Virginia Tech campus, where a slate-grey sky and drizzle seemed ordered up specially to match the mood on the most sombre day since Cho slaughtered 32 people on Monday.
Something they don't make clear here that may need specification is that on the campus, there seem to be a lot of Muslim students, and when the Washington Post did their photography, they first chose to run a photo that featured quite a few of them.
Broadcast media in this country reacted to a backlash by significantly cutting back on the airing of the disturbing images of the 23-year-old Virginia Tech student pointing handguns at a camera or brandishing a hammer in a menacing fashion.

The airing of the images did little to further understanding of his motives and police said it had only marginal impact on their investigation.

The fear was that such a platform could embolden copycat killers who would expect their delusional ramblings would also be shared with the world.

"The world has endured a view of life that few of us would or should ever have to endure," Virginia State Police Chief Steve Flaherty said. "I'm sorry you all were exposed to these images."

Peter and Cathy Read of Annandale, Va., who lost their 19-year-old daughter, Mary Karen, urged the media to let the smiling faces of the young victims take precedence over the menacing glares of a madman.

"I want to issue a direct personal plea to all the major media," Peter Read said.

"For the love of God and our children, stop broadcasting those images and those words. Choose to focus on life and the love and the light that our children brought into the world, and not on the darkness and the madness and the death.''
This brings up an important subject: too often, it seems, we get broadcasts on TV showing discussions involving the criminals and not the friends and relatives of the victims. If that's the case, then that's exactly why the time has come to start changing all that by broadcasting discussions about the innocent victims, the viewpoints of those who were fortunate to survive, and the families and friends of the victims too.

The MSM would do well to stop airing vicious tirades by murderers, and to start instead emphasizing the innocent and the positives they bring to the world.

Some other items of interest:

Muslim student organization at VTech is against praying for non-Muslims. Hugh Fitzgerald talks about it at Dhimmi Watch.

Murderer's phone records are sought.

And, the net is buzzing with what exactly the meaning of "Ismail Ax" is.

Update: it turns out that the murderer bought his ammunition on eBay, which shows that tighter security is going to be needed to keep criminals from buying weapons online.

Open trackbacks: Basil's Blog, Blue Star Chronicles, bRight and Early, Church and State, Faultline USA, Is it Just Me, Jo's Cafe, Point Five, Third World County.

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