On MSNBC's Morning Joe Monday, co-host Joe Scarborough responded passionately to the execution-style shooting of a Texas deputy, blaming cable news—including his own station—for inflaming the anti-cop sentiment that has lead "to people wearing uniforms being a lot less safe today than they were before Ferguson."
After playing a clip of Harris County Sheriff Ron Hickman suggesting that anti-cop sentiment was behind the murder of Deputy Darren Goforth, adding "cops' lives matter, too," Scarborough launched into his condemnation of news media for helping "start a war on cops" by irresponsibly presenting false anti-law enforcement narratives in the ever-"churning" 24-hour news. He also specifically chided the media for effectively "glorifying in a perverse way" the criminals perpetrating the crimes.
SCARBOROUGH: And my argument, must have been a year ago is, if you go around and the countervailing attitude on cable news shows 24 hours a day are that there are white cops driving around black neighborhoods looking to shoot teenagers with their hands up in the air while they’re surrendering, then you are going to start a war on cops, that you are spreading a lie that is going to have serious fallout . . . The focus on cops and sort of this 24/7 rush to just basically paint all cops with the same brush has led to this sort of anger. And yeah, I do blame it on cable news. I do blame it on the churning of the past year. Nonstop churning. That leads to people wearing uniforms being a lot less safe today than they were before Ferguson . . .
I was really shocked last week to see that in the Roanoke shooting, they were actually glorifying in a perverse way the shooter. This is what the shooter’s tweet said. This is — this is where his car was. This is —
MIKA BRZEZINSKI: His Facebook.
JOE: That this was his Facebook. No. No. That’s exactly what this guy wanted.
AMY HOLMES: There is research actually to back that up. That the shooters are looking to make headlines. Are looking to become famous and are competing with previous mass shooters to —
JOE: So the cable news network that did that, and actually there were a couple that did that, they are promoting the next Roanoke-style shooting. And you can talk to experts and they will tell you that. Why this network felt the need, they were so desperate for a few rating points which really didn’t come around anyway, but were so desperate for a few ratings points that they actually gave the murderer what he wanted —
MIKA: Right, no.
JOE: — is absolutely sick.
Transcript via Newsbusters. Video via MSNBC.