“HECKLED! HECK, PAUL RYAN HECKLED BY HECKLING HECKLERS!” That sums up the mainstream media’s coverage of Paul Ryan’s successful visit to the Iowa State Fair on the weekend. Because a couple of left-wing lunatics rushed the stage, apparently punching a campaign volunteer in the process, the media is treating Ryan’s campaign stop as a failure, using the small, violent protest as a stand-in for public opinion as a whole.
National Public Radio is but one example of many. The network ran four stories over two days about the hecklers (even calling them “serious hecklers” in one story). Neither NPR nor most other mainstream outlets bothered to mention the alleged punching; even those, like Buzzfeed, that noted the attack buried it. NPR’s Scott Horsley (above) took the narrative to its inevitable conclusion, noting that President Barack Obama “got a friendlier welcome” and that when he started speaking, “the clouds began to part.”
(Other gems on NPR this morning include a laughable story by Ari Shapiro knocking the Republican ticket for not having “racial diversity“–an absurd and racist standard to apply to a two-person group, since satisfying it would require each to have a different skin color. Evidently NPR believes white skin should be an obstacle to higher public office.)
The media’s fascination with the (violent) hecklers is revealing, as is the fact that reporters were able to discern so much of what the hecklers were screaming, with remarkable precision. No one seems to have asked whether they were sent by the Obama campaign, or whether they have any ties to the Democratic Party. No–we are simply to believe that they are authentic emissaries of public outrage against Ryan.
Worse than the evident double standard here is the fact that by heaping undue attention upon the hecklers, the media is encouraging more violent outbursts–which they will dutifully report, no doubt, as evidence that the Republican ticket is divisive. Let it be noted: it is the Obama campaign, the radical left, and their admirers in the mainstream media who are fomenting division–and the “heckling” fiasco is only the beginning.