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The mea culpas didn't come

Sunday, April 27, 2008 by Dave Winer.

At best the MSM got the Wright story wrong, at best it was a mistake.  Permalink to this paragraph

But if it were a mistake, there would have been some mea culpas today, after seeing the Wright interview, someone would have said they got it wrong, maybe even apologized for contributing to the vilification of Rev Wright. Permalink to this paragraph

But the mea culpas didn't come. They rationalize it, generally, by saying it wasn't a real interview. At least they didn't completely ignore it, but they came close. Permalink to this paragraph

A picture named tuckerKing.jpgI was reminded of the aftermath of the Karla Faye Tucker execution in Texas. Because she was a woman, and religious, repentent and reformed, she didn't seem to be a threat to society. She went on Larry King to plead for her life. Tucker made the perfect spokesmodel for advocates of the death penalty. She admitted to a horrible murder, but she was such an attractive murderer. It was a way to show support for the cause even when the subject was a compelling person, someone you might like to know. There was a huge national debate about it. Permalink to this paragraph

On February 3, 1998, she was executed. I wondered why it was so quiet. Why weren't the advocates of the death penalty who said they needed her death to feel closure weren't saying "See I told you so, I feel closure now, don't you?" Permalink to this paragraph

They didn't say that because they didn't feel it. Murder isn't an equation that can be balanced. You can't balance the taking of a life by taking a life. It doesn't work that way. Permalink to this paragraph

I'll never understand why we enjoy a circus like the shaming of Rev Wright, a man who should be proud of his life, not ashamed. I feel empathy for the person in the middle of a threatening circle, don't you? I feel empathy for a murderer being put to death. I feel rage for the innocent people who are put to death by the state, in my name, in the name of justice. Permalink to this paragraph

I think there was silence about the death of Karla Faye because there was so much shame about it. The justice system needed her to shut up. Maybe that's the same reason the press has nothing to say now that Wright has spoken and shows they got the story horribly wrong. Maybe, to preserve their sense of integrity, they need him to shut up. And he's talking. That's a problem for them.  Permalink to this paragraph

Since the press isn't going to cover this, it's up to the people to cover the press. Obama won't talk about it either (makes me wonder about Obama). I think the problem is bigger than getting Obama elected, we need to reform how ideas and information flows in our country.  Permalink to this paragraph

Update: Cross-posted at Huff. Permalink to this paragraph


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A picture named dave.jpgDave Winer, 53, pioneered the development of weblogs, syndication (RSS), podcasting, outlining, and web content management software; former contributing editor at Wired Magazine, research fellow at Harvard Law School, entrepreneur, and investor in web media companies. A native New Yorker, he received a Master's in Computer Science from the University of Wisconsin, a Bachelor's in Mathematics from Tulane University and currently lives in Berkeley, California.

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