December 18, 2012

Press Gives Bloomberg a Pass for ‘Only Happens in America’ Remark on ‘Meet the Press’

In his Sunday appearance on “Meet the Press” (HT The Blaze), New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg answered host David Gregory’s first question relating to the Sandy Hook massacre by saying that “It’s so unbelievable, and it only happens in America.” That statement is so obviously false that I would have expected even a Bloomberg- and gun control-sympathetic press to point out who wrong that statement is. Nope: A search on Bloomberg’s name at the Associated Press at 1:45 p.m. returned four relevant articles containing Bloomberg’s name; none reports that statement, let alone its erroneous nature.

Further, a Google News search on [Bloomberg "only happens in America"] (typed exactly as indicated between brackets; sorted by date, with duplicates) returned 42 items, most of which were versions of a short, unbylined AP Sunday report containing the incorrect Bloomberg assertion. The AP clearly made it disappear in subsequent national site dispatches without identifying the statement’s falsehood. To its credit, AP did issue a correction to an earlier “worst in U.S. history” statement in a different report:

CORRECTION: CT SCHOOL SHOOTING-GUN CONTROL STORY

In a story Dec. 16 about the Newtown, Conn., school massacre, The Associated Press reported erroneously that the attack was the bloodiest against youngsters in the nation’s history. The bombing of a school in Bath, Mich., on May 18, 1927, killed 38 children. The bomber, a disgruntled school district official and farmer, also killed seven adults that day, including his wife and himself. The attack in Newtown left 20 schoolchildren and eight adults dead, including the shooter and his mother.

It has been left to center-right blogs and publications to correct Bloomberg’s “only in America” assertion, which has two untrue aspects. First, school shootings have happened and continue to happen frequently in other parts of the world. Second, the horrific Newtown massacre is not the deadliest in history. That highest death toll in a massacre targeting schoolchildren happened just 17 months ago, as Gregory Gwyn-Williams, Jr. of CNS News pointed out on Sunday (internal link in original):

I’m not sure what Mayor Michael Bloomberg was doing on July 22, 2011, or what type of memory he has, but I certainly remember a man named Anders Behring Breivik taking the lives of 77 individuals at a summer camp in Norway.

And, the last time I checked, Norway wasn’t part of the United States.

Gwyn-Williams Jr.’s link is to a recent AP item in which Breivik (not kidding) complains about prision conditions.

Norway also has among the strictest gun control laws in the world, which obviously did not prevent Breivik from carrying out his murderous spree.

It’s hard to imagine that an NRA spokeperson could get away with stating an obvious falsehood without called on it by a chorus of establishment press reporters and commentators.

To be cross-posted at NewsBusters.org.

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