(HOT AIR) Since two reporters were detained by a heavy-handed Ferguson police last week, the media has been a part of the story of frustration, violence, and racial tension in Missouri. Most journalists and media professionals were, however, able to craft and observe moiety between themselves and the protesters they were covering. The distinction between reporter and subject has begun to blur.

This is a complex subject. The media has both a right and a responsibility to report from the ground in Ferguson.

The press is correct to challenge authority, to broadcast images that the local police do not want seen, and to serve as a check on the power of law enforcement and the military. The media’s presence may have already acted as a fail-safe and prevented acts of excessive policing which would have only exacerbated an already tense situation and cast the entire crowd control effort in a negative light.

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