It has been one year since a sniper ambushed 12 Dallas law enforcement officers, killing five, at a police brutality protest on July 7, 2016. Then-President Obama declared at the time, “There is no possible justification for these kinds of attacks or any violence against law enforcement.”
Yet violence against law enforcement has become commonplace in recent years. According to the National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial Fund, 66 officers were shot to death in 2016. So far in 2017, 24 more have been shot to death. There were 43 police gunned down in 2015 and 50 in 2014. In each of those years, shootings were the number one cause of death for police officers in the line of duty.
The most recent instance came Wednesday morning, when a New York police officer of 12 years was fatally shot in the head while sitting in a police truck in the Bronx.
One retired St. Louis-area police officer traces all the anti-police animosity back to that violent August 2014 confrontation in Ferguson, Missouri, that ended up costing black teenager Michael Brown his life and spawning a lie The Washington Post would later call one of the biggest “Pinocchios” of 2015 – “Hands up, don’t shoot!”
“The invention of this narrative that Michael Brown was shot while he was innocently trying to surrender with his hands up is what brought on the last three years of violence, particularly anti-police violence,” Jeff Roorda, business manager for the St. Louis Police Officers Association, told WND.
In the days, weeks and months following the Brown shooting, numerous media outlets reported Brown had been shot with his hands held up in surrender, begging Officer Darren Wilson not to shoot him.
However, a Department of Justice investigation into the incident found the “Hands up, don’t shoot” claim was not supported by the evidence. What the DOJ found was the physical and forensic evidence supported Wilson’s account of events: Brown reached into Wilson’s SUV and grabbed and punched the officer, tried to grab Wilson’s gun, and then, in the final moments of his life, charged at Wilson as Wilson shot him.
This DOJ report was released in March 2015. However, some media outlets continued to perpetuate the “Hands up, don’t shoot” line even after the report came out, as the Media Research Center documented. Even as recently as this May, CNN was still treating the “Hands up, don’t shoot” story as if it might be true.
Roorda noted sadly the DOJ report did not defeat the “Hands up, don’t shoot” narrative.
“You still read in every mainstream media account where they refer to Ferguson, they say, ‘Michael Brown, the unarmed black teenager shot by a white police officer,'” he said. “They’re still not telling the whole story. They’re still reframing history even though we know that’s not what happened.”
Roorda believes all the faulty reporting about “Hands up, don’t shoot,” combined with one-sided accounts of many other police encounters, has fueled all the hostility and violence against police that has dominated headlines over the past couple of years.
“People are reacting to the narrative, not the reality. If the reality was what was on people’s minds, they wouldn’t be ambushing cops. Even the deranged assassins in Baton Rouge, Dallas and now twice in New York, I don’t think they would have been driven to such a heinous act if they weren’t compelled by this false narrative.”
For Colin Flaherty, who chronicled nationwide black mob attacks against white people in his book “White Girl Bleed A Lot,” the “Hands up, don’t shoot” lie is the embodiment of fake news and one of the most glaring lies of the 21st century.
“Michael Brown is the most relentless lie of our generation and ‘Hands up, don’t shoot’ is still an idea many people believe that fuels anti-cop resentment,” Flaherty told WND in frustration. “No matter how often every part of his story is exposed as a lie, people just keep repeating it as if it were truth. Last year, the Washington Post labeled the story of Michael Brown as one of the biggest lies of the year and they gave it four ‘Pinocchios.'”
However, Flaherty complained the media, even The Washington Post, still seem to suggest Officer Darren Wilson did something wrong in shooting Brown. An Associated Press article published in The Washington Post’s online edition on June 22, 2017, about the Ferguson Police Department referenced the Brown case and took care to mention Brown “was black and unarmed.” But it did not mention Brown’s attack on Officer Wilson.
“How many cop killings, from the Dallas shooting in July of 2016 or the Baton Rouge shooting of the same timeframe, were fueled by the fake news lie of ‘Hands up, don’t shoot?’” he asked.