If Witness Changed His Story, What about the Media?

There are so many implications to consider if the witness changed his story. Is this accurate… or more diabolical nonsense?

Dorian Johnson

Via the Epoch Times: “Dorian Johnson, Witness in Michael Brown Shooting, Allegedly Changed His Initial Story; Radio Station Backs Off Claims.”

Johnson’s claims came under additional scrutiny after a medical examiner’s report said that the six bullets that hit Brown all hit him from the front, as opposed to the back.

100.7 The Viper reported on August 20 that “a very connected national media source” told it that Ferguson police officer Darren Wilson will be cleared in the shooting of Brown.

“The key: Dorian Johnson has now admitted that Michael Brown attacked Officer Wilson and attempted to take his gun. OFFICER WILSON WILL NOT BE CHARGED!” it said. “This is scary. When this news is made official, we all have reason to be concerned about the reaction.”

But the station has edited its Facebook post to now state the following: “It has been reported on social media that there is a likelihood that Ferguson officer Darren Wilson will not be charged in the shooting of Michael Brown. A key witness has now admitted that Michael Brown attacked Officer Wilson and attempted to take his gun. This is scary…. IF this news is made official, we all have reason to be concerned about the reaction.”

My most serious thought, if this report is true, is to ponder the responsibility of news organizations to eschew the “gotta be first” mentality in favor of “gotta be right.”

IF (please see the stress there)… IF… it turns out that the officer’s reported story is largely true… then a nation went into an uproar, and a town experience mayhem, looting, burning, further assaults and gunfire based on lies and unsubstantiated rumors, fueled and disseminated by media.

Is it irresponsible to put mics and cameras in the face of people on the street—when we have NO IDEA of that person’s character or motives in being willing to speak out in public? Are reporters culpable for feeding us such information, knowing that the audio and video beamed to us inescapably portray that person as if he or she is somehow a totally credible source?

Yep, we need to seriously ask ourselves whether truth matters more than being the first one with a tale to tell. We also–as a people–need to reexamine the prevailing myth of higher education that there is no such thing as truth, but only politics–using words to achieve a desired, ideological end.