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Mainstream Media Scream: NBC's Andrea Mitchell injects race in Ferguson crisis

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Paul Bedard,Washington Secrets,NBC,Mainstream Media Scream,Race and Diversity,Racism,Ferguson

This week’s Mainstream Media Scream features NBC’s Andrea Mitchell injecting race into her coverage of the turmoil in Ferguson, Mo. over the police shooting of unarmed African American Michael Brown.

On Sunday’s “Meet the Press,” Mitchell declared that Rev. Al Sharpton was in Ferguson “on a peace mission” days after she tweeted “Detained for reporting while black?” about police in Ferguson arresting Washington Post reporter Wesley Lowery.

Her full tweet: “@washingtonpost demanding why @WesleyLowery taken in prevented from taking video by #Ferguson police. Detained for reporting while black?”

Actually, Lowery was arrested with a white reporter for the Huffington Post, Ryan J. Reilly, and wrote about their situation in the Washington Post.

Then there is her Sunday exchange with Wall Street Journal’s Jason Riley:

ANDREA MITCHELL: Before we go, I want to ask you about Ferguson because you have written a whole book, Please Stop Helping Us: How Liberals Make it Harder for Blacks to Succeed. What we have seen in Ferguson certainly shows the disengagement between a local police force and the community.

JASON RILEY: You could say that. I don't want to litigate this in the press. If the officer used excessive force I think he should be prosecuted. But at the same time, let's not pretend that our morgues and cemeteries are full of young black men because cops are shooting them. The reality is that it’s because other black people are shooting them. And we need to talk about black criminality. Blacks are only 13 percent of the population. But they’re 50 percent of homicide victims in this country and 90 percent of those victims are killed by other black people. We need to talk about that.

MITCHELL: We certainly saw that the blacks were the victims of the looting, as well.

RILEY: The same time, at the same time, the same weekend that this went down in Ferguson, we had 26 shootings in Chicago. But Al Sharpton didn’t head to Chicago. He headed to St. Louis because he has an entirely different agenda, which is to continue to blame whites.

MITCHELL: Just to say — well, that is actually not his agenda — because he’s actually there on a peace mission today.

Media Research Center Vice President of Research Brent Baker explains our pick: “It takes chutzpah to say on the air, with a straight face, that long-time race hustler Al Sharpton is ever ‘on a peace mission,’ but given the eagerness Mitchell’s tweet shows to instantly blame racism, it sadly shows how she puts race-baiting ahead of facts.”

Rating: Five out of five screams.

Paul Bedard, the Washington Examiner's "Washington Secrets" columnist, can be contacted at pbedard@washingtonexaminer.com.