New York Times columnist David Brooks supported journalist Katie Couric’s decision to edit out the late Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg’s criticism of athletes who kneel to protest the national anthem — according to Couric herself.
As Breitbart News noted on Wednesday:
In her new memoir, Going There, journalist Katie Couric admitted that she edited comments from the now-deceased Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg for her 2016 interview with Yahoo! News to protect her from severe public backlash. The Justice’s crime? Criticizing the national anthem kneelers.
Though the original interview quoted Ginsburg calling the anthem protests “dumb and disrespectful,” Couric omitted parts she deemed more problematic, such as when Ginsburg reportedly said that the protesters were showing “contempt for a government that has made it possible for their parents and grandparents to live a decent life.”
Ginsburg added, “Which they probably could not have lived in the places they came from…as they became older they realize that this was youthful folly. And that’s why education is important.”
The UK Daily Mail noted that Couric described going to Brooks for advice: “Couric called a friend, David Brooks, a New York Times journalist, who advised her that Ginsburg probably didn’t understand the question, even though she was still serving on the Supreme Court at the time.”
That provoked the ire of liberal constitutional law scholar Jonathan Turley, who wrote that Brooks’s role in Couric’s censorship was “troubling.”
He added: “Notably, in rationalizing a decision to bury a major news item, Brooks allegedly maintained that Ginsburg probably did not understand the question. It is a remarkably [sic] spin since, if she did not understand that question, how did she understand the other questions?”
Turley concluded: “Couric chose the narrative over the news. In doing so, she did a disservice to both journalism and the law. This was not “youthful folly” by Couric. It was advocacy masquerading as journalism.”
Couric was celebrated for her interview during the 2008 presidential campaign with then-Republican vice presidential nominee Gov. Sarah Palin, whom she attempted to embarrass by asking her what newspapers she read. For her efforts, Couric received a 2009 Walter Cronkite award for “Special Achievement for National Impact on the 2008 Campaign.”
Brooks, a Never Trump writer who appears frequently on Beltway panel discussions and Sunday morning news shows, too, trashed Palin, calling her a “fatal cancer” for Republicans. He has yet to explain his involvement in the Ginsburg story.
Joel B. Pollak is Senior Editor-at-Large at Breitbart News and the host of Breitbart News Sunday on Sirius XM Patriot on Sunday evenings from 7 p.m. to 10 p.m. ET (4 p.m. to 7 p.m. PT). He is the author of the recent e-book, Neither Free nor Fair: The 2020 U.S. Presidential Election. His recent book, RED NOVEMBER, tells the story of the 2020 Democratic presidential primary from a conservative perspective. He is a winner of the 2018 Robert Novak Journalism Alumni Fellowship. Follow him on Twitter at @joelpollak.