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Media Makes Boy Who Is Aspiring LEO Seem Violent

Media Makes Boy Who Is Aspiring LEO Seem Violent

Video Screen Capture

Media ITE via YellowBrix

August 01, 2011

CHICAGO – Chicago CBS affiliate WBBM has issued an apology after taking the comments of a four-year-old child out of context in relation to a shooting in the area. The child tells a reporter that the shootings don’t scare him and that, when he grows up, “I’m going to have me a gun.” This makes the child seem to aspire to commit shootings himself, but it was taken out of context– the boy expected to have a gun because he wants to be a police officer.

The story in question involved a drive-by shooting in the area, and several locals were on about whether they were fearful of future attacks. The four-year-old in question responded “I’m not scared of nothing,” and when asked if he would stay away from guns, retorted “I’m going to have me a gun!” And that’s where the original broadcast ends. The next line that was conveniently omitted? “I’m going to be police!”

The Maynard Institute rounded up the outrage in the academic community about portraying a four-year-old black boy as a “gangbanger in waiting”– and the NAACP reacted to the piece with disgust. NAACP President Ben Jealous noted in a recorded statement that his first reaction to the video was wondering where the child’s parents were, but later called the inclusion of that clip without context “disturbing,” both as an NAACP president and as a former journalist.

It didn’t take long for the WBBM to respond, and immediately apologize for the gaffe. Gawker has the apology from the station:

“We accept responsibility for the mistakes that were made, both in the reporting and editing of the story. The video of the child should not have aired. As soon as news management identified the problem, they took immediate steps to ensure that the video would not air in subsequent newscasts. In addition, we have followed up with our employees to make sure that we all have learned from the mistakes that were made.”

It’s entirely unclear whether the “follow up with our employees” included pink slips, but as far as media spin goes, it doesn’t get much worse than making a four-year-old look bloodthirsty.

The video below is divided into three segments: The original WBBM report as it aired, the full footage of the child saying he wanted to be a police officer, and the statement from NAACP President Ben Jealous:

  • Socrates_max50


    5 months ago


    Wow leave it to the media! Of course the Conspericy Theorist in me wonders would they have appologized and retracted if the boy had been caucasian? Would they're have been any outrage from any groups? Oh that's right we don't have any National Association for the Advancement of Poor Caucasians.

  • Photo_user_blank_big


    10 months ago


    with all the kill and problems in that city Why not help this kid see he can get to his dream of being a Police officer. If more kids felt this way there would be a lot less crime in our streets. I hope Chicago PD will look this kid up take him on on ride along take up in the Helicopter that could change his life. Why encourage this kid. Let him know its okay to be the Police. Shame on the Media they should really be ashamed of themselves.

  • Photo_user_blank_big


    12 months ago


    Can one even imagine what this little guy has already witnessed in his young life?

  • 0125101535_max50


    over 1 year ago


    LMAO JImroc's comment.

  • shadow_officer

    over 1 year ago


    media always leaves out important items

  • 100_0630_max600_max50


    over 1 year ago


    It sounds like it was intentional to me...

  • 580266338686131_max50


    over 1 year ago


    What a bunch of dam idiots. Media should have the story straight before releasing anything to the public. uuuugggg

  • Photo_user_blank_big


    over 1 year ago


    Sometimes I don't understand how a mistake link this can happen, but it did. So boo for that. But, the news station is claiming fault and stated that they won't let this happen again. So yay for that. I just hope that they do their best to make sure something like this happens again.

  • Photo_user_blank_big


    over 1 year ago


    That's the media for you. Most of them lean so far to the left if you put them all on an airplane it would crash.
    On the upside it is good to see that little boy aspiring to be one of us.

  • Newpatch_sq90_max50


    over 1 year ago


    Bet it was CNN.

  • Silver_warrior_max50


    over 1 year ago


    Nothing more than an agenda and it is so easy for the media to "accidentally" leave out important pieces of information. . . . information that changes the entire meaning of the story all because the media has an agenda.

  • 370661_1333031136_1181209358_n_max50


    over 1 year ago


    Flat out the media sucks! There are so many youth in Chicago who are inspired to become a LEO. Media makes it seem as if every kid outside of the most affluent neighborhoods only want to become a thug, this is sad. We can also thank the media for escalating the small portion of racism that still exist. The media seems to report only the negative actions within Law Enforcement, escalating the fact that leaves the impression that its not a desirable job for a child and even an adult to have and hope for.

  • Photo_user_blank_big


    almost 2 years ago


    I think that the fact this youngster wants to serve on the right side of the law is fantastic.It is good to see kids like him have dreams and goals in life. The trick to this however, Does this boy have a father figure to look up to and teach him the ways which are above reproach. Furthermore, lets hope his mother is also in this kids life and not always dropping him off at the local mall to hang out with his friends. I know this sounds crazy and obsurd however, peer pressure is strong. The fact that this kid wants a gun when he grows up, the way I see it if he grows up and stays out of trouble that is his right as an american( I understand Chicago is anti-gun). Now for the media....PATHETIC, I am surprised his parents don't sue the pants off WBBM. The media can be pigs at times. This story was a BAD DECISION to broadcast on television. Best o luck to you little dude

  • Photo_user_blank_big


    about 2 years ago


    i agree with kaalima 100%

  • Fantasy_warrior-200310-sm_max50


    about 2 years ago


    Way to go there Librial Media

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