Nolte: Debunking the ‘Atlanta Journal-Constitution’ Attack on Eastwood’s ‘Richard Jewell’

Claire Folger/75 Year Plan Productions

The far-left Atlanta Journal-Constitution is lashing out at Clint Eastwood’s upcoming Richard Jewell, attacking the movie as mean, sexist, and inaccurate.

First some background: The AJC was front and center in the smearing of Richard Jewell, the security guard falsely accused by the media, the FBI, and the Late Night comics of planting a deadly bomb at the 1996 Olympics.

The truth is that Jewell was a hero, the man who used his training to spot the bomb, the man who risked his own life to evacuate the area, the selfless security guard who saved countless lives.

But because Jewell is everything the left despise: white, male, overweight, working-class, unsophisticated, southern… He was relentlessly smeared for nearly 90 days, a smear campaign that began with the AJC doing stenography for the FBI.

The Richard Jewell case is an early incubator of the Russia Collusion Hoax, where the media write what the Feds tell them to write, where innocent lives are ruined based on bigotry, partisanship, laziness, and a craven, damn-the-facts desire to be first.

On Monday, AJC’s editor-in-chief Kevin Riley released an email hoping to get ahead of Eastwood’s movie, which hits theaters December 13. And as is always the case with the thin-skinned, crybaby, eternally dishonest media, the email is filled with deception and countless lies of omission.

Let’s start with the fact Riley has not seen the movie.

“Although I’ve yet to see this movie, a colleague of mine has seen a preview,” Riley writes.

Wow, more superb reporting from the media right there. Yes, this is all based on a single anonymous source who has seen a preview.

Welcome to today’s media, where a man like Eastwood is attacked based on a single, anonymous source.

The media in this country is shit.

Sorry, that just needed to be said.

“Based on my [single, anonymous source] I wanted to clarify the accuracy of several critical moments at that time versus the way they are inaccurately portrayed in the film. This is essential because the underlying theme of the movie is that the FBI and press are not to be trusted, ” Riley continues.

Newsflash, y’all, movies that dramatize things will sometimes dramatize things.

Who knew? I mean, besides everyone.

This crybaby is crybabying because a movie — a freakin’ movie — might not be 100 percent accurate.

Who wants to tell him that we do not expect movies to be accurate, but we do expect newspapers to be accurate?

Anyway, how does it feel, pal? How does it feel to live with the knowledge that something inaccurate might be told about you?

And it is not as though the AJC has learned its lesson about smearing innocent people from the Jewell fiasco.  This fake news outlet was one of the first to smear the Covington Catholic High School boys with this headline: “Teen wearing red MAGA hat taunts drum-beating Native American during Indigenous Peoples March.”

I suppose when someone makes a movie about the media falsely accusing a group of innocent boys — who were in fact menaced by this Indian activist — as Klansmen-in-training, the AJC editors will claim it wasn’t their fault; they were just reporting what Twitter told them to report.

Riley claims that his single, anonymous source told him “the film portrays our reporter, Kathy Scruggs, as trading sex with an FBI agent in exchange for a tip on the story.” He adds that there is “no evidence” this actually happened.

Let me remind everyone once again that we are talking about a MOVIE here, but the letter does raise an interesting question…

When did “no evidence” ever stop the media?

There was never any evidence Trump colluded with Russia. There was never any evidence connecting Richard Jewell to the bombing. In fact, all the evidence said he was innocent.

Are we only holding Clint Eastwood to this new “no evidence” standard?

Hey, maybe like the AJC got its “evidence” about Jewell from the FBI, Eastwood got his “evidence” about the reporter from the FBI?

And that would make it okay, right? Because those are your goddamned rules, right?

Or maybe Eastwood got his “evidence” from a single, anonymous source. I’m told that’s okay now, too.

You won’t believe this next one: [emphasis added throughout]

“I worry about Eastwood’s version of Kathy. It would be so easy to play Kathy as a love interest, as something less than the competent reporter she was. Movies often reduce complex people to types. This leaves little space for nuance,” writes Riley.

Look who’s suddenly opposed to reducing “complex people to types.”

This must be a new rule at the AJC, because some of us haven’t forgotten this, haven’t forgotten the second paragraph of the AJC Extra! edition — via a must-read 1996 Atlantic story:

“Richard Jewell, 33, a former law enforcement officer, fits the profile of the lone bomber,” wrote Kathy Scruggs and Ron Martz in the second paragraph of a story in an “Extra” edition of The Atlanta Journal on July 30, 1996. “This profile generally includes a frustrated white man who is a former police officer, member of the military or police ‘wanna-be’ who seeks to become a hero.

But as the New York Times reported in 1999, “No source is cited for the assertion that Mr. Jewell fit the profile of the lone bomber.”

And then, along came these headlines about Jewell from AJC …  FIVE in ONE day:

”Security Guard Had Reputation as Zealot”

“Motive? Could Be Sociopath, Attention Seeker,”

”Crimes Committed by Guards Plague Security Industry”

”Change of Fortune”

”Security Woes Hit AT&T Site”

And then, as reported by the Atlantic, the AJC compared Richard Jewell to Wayne Williams —  the infamous Atlanta child murderer:

AJC columnist Dave Kindred, in his second column on Jewell in two days, compared the scene to the time law enforcement officers sought evidence against Wayne Williams, the man convicted of two murders in Atlanta’s missing children case when “federal agents came to this town to deal with another suspect who lived with his mother. Like this one, that suspect was drawn to the blue lights and sirens of police work. Like this one, he became famous in the aftermath of murder.”

Here’s the closing line: ”Richard Jewell sits in the shadows today. Wayne Williams sits in prison forever.”

And because those five headlines were not enough, the AJC went with this:

In an Aug. 1 story in The Atlanta Journal Constitution headlined A BAD MAN TO CROSS ON HIS BEAT, students were also quoted as saying that Jewell went to extremes.

“He was very macho, and he could get very belligerent,” Piedmont College junior Nikki Lane said. “I’ve seen him go from calm to angry, back to calm and back to angry in a matter of seconds.”

As far as lies of omission, Riley fails to reveal the doubts some inside his own newspaper were having at the time. From a 1999 New York Times story:

On July 31, 1996, Anita Harkins, a copy editor at The Atlanta Journal-Constitution, was reading a column destined for the next day’s newspaper when a colleague heard her exclaim, ”They can’t do it this way.”

The column, by Dave Kindred, said: ”Like this one, he became famous in the aftermath of murder. His name was Wayne Williams. This one is Richard Jewell.”

Ms. Harkins went to the editor in charge to raise doubts about the article. The response, Ms. Harkins said in a sworn statement, was ”something along the lines of, ‘Well, it is a Dave Kindred column[.]’ ”

And now we  arrive at the most reprehensible part of Riley’s crybabying, the part where Richard Jewell is again falsely accused by the AJC, this time for bringing about the premature death of Kathy Scruggs.

“After the Olympics, I didn’t see much of Kathy. In 1999, I moved to England as the newspaper’s European correspondent,” Riley writes. “Kathy was plagued by illness, but stayed on the job. Some of her friends believe she was never the same after the Olympic ordeal. She died alone in 2001, just a few weeks from her 43rd birthday.”

Scruggs died of Crohn’s disease, and this is not the first time the AJC has shamelessly and shamefully  implied her untimely death was the fault of Richard Jewell.

“Unrelenting stress from litigation brought by Jewell’s legal team exacerbated her medical woes,” the AJC claimed just last week.

And here is the lie in the letter:

“Jewell was 44 when he died in 2007. He lived his dream of becoming a police officer, and at his death was a deputy sheriff in Meriwether County,” Riley writes, as though Jewell went on to enjoy a happy ending.

“The federal government apologized, and he was officially declared a hero by the state of Georgia. He made an appearance on Saturday Night Live and put in a couple of cameos. He lived the life of a hero,” Riley adds.

No, he didn’t live the life of a hero. He deserved that life, but fake news and disgusting Late Night comics and the FBI ruined his life forever, made him the fat, overzealous, mama’s boy, cop-wannabe forever.

And finally, Riley claims that “the worst offense of the script is a scene that has Kathy suggesting to Jewell’s lawyer that she had made a mistake. Kathy never doubted that she got the story right.”

Only to our garbage media would the “worst offense” be a reporter admitting to a mistake … a mistake that not only ruined a man’s life, but an innocent man’s life, a hero’s life.

Follow John Nolte on Twitter @NolteNC. Follow his Facebook Page here.


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