CNN Roasted Over Smollett Verdict Headline: Network Plays Down Conviction with This 3-Word Phrase
At least they didn’t call it a “fiery but mostly peaceful verdict.”
Alas, as CNN goes, its coverage of the guilty verdict in the Jussie Smollett case was pretty much par for the course.
Its hosts began by believing Smollett uncritically. Then they covered the controversy for a while, forgetting about it until the trial.
After the verdict Thursday, in true CNN fashion, they insisted the former “Empire” actor being found guilty on five out of six felony charges relating to a January 2019 hate crime hoax was no big thing.
(This is the kind of record CNN — and the rest of the mainstream media — want to sweep under the carpet. At The Western Journal, we’re not going to let them forget about their own journalistic malpractice — and you can help us by subscribing.)
Theoretically, Smollett could face 15 years in prison for his crimes. Realistically, he won’t face anywhere near that as a first-time offender — although the fact he took the stand in his own defense and potentially perjured himself could also mean it’s no longer a near-certainty he will get off without jail time.
This is pretty serious stuff, in other words — and it was hardly a mixed verdict.
Don’t tell this to CNN, however. The outlet went with the headline “Jussie Smollett guilty on some charges.”
I honestly thought this headline was a prank when someone posted. It is real pic.twitter.com/KZE62OhHkz
— Logan Dobson (@LoganDobson) December 10, 2021
Yes, guilty “on some charges.” As in, five of six. The one charge of which he was acquitted involved an alleged false statement made to a Chicago police officer weeks after the attack. Other than that, it was a clean sweep. Or a mixed bag, if you’re following the newly Cuomo-less CNN.
But then, this is CNN.
In the midst of the Kenosha, Wisconsin, riots in August 2020, the network ran the iconic-for-all-the-wrong-reasons chyron “Fiery but mostly peaceful protests after police shooting.”
NEVER FORGET: “Fiery but mostly peaceful protests.”
?Kenosha, WI pic.twitter.com/vzgmBn72Mp
— Katie Daviscourt?? (@KatieDaviscourt) November 15, 2021
Then as now, the network went viral for all the wrong reasons.
CNN is fake news.
5 of 6 charges is not “some” charges.
This is why people don’t trust you, nor should they, @brianstelter. pic.twitter.com/NS3VWs7V0b
— Reagan Battalion (@ReaganBattalion) December 10, 2021
CNN offers its distinctive take, which is that the jury found Jussie partly guilty and partly innocent. It was kind of a tie! #JussieSmollett pic.twitter.com/pxhCpXCKOI
— Dinesh D’Souza (@DineshDSouza) December 10, 2021
Did Don Lemon write this headline? https://t.co/NuM8iRvWlE
— Chuck Ross (@ChuckRossDC) December 10, 2021
That last tweet references yet another CNN conflict-of-interest problem: The revelation that host Don Lemon texted Smollett before the hate crime hoax was burst wide open, letting him know that police didn’t buy his story.
CNN urged to fire Don Lemon over claim he tipped off Jussie Smollett: Anchor remains mum about whether he texted former Empire star that cops doubted hate-crime talehttps://t.co/peDa1x3l83
— MAGA Country Poso (@JackPosobiec) December 8, 2021
This comes less than a week after CNN let go Lemon’s pal Chris Cuomo after revelations he was far more stuck in with his brother’s PR response to sexual misconduct charges than he originally let on. That brother, of course, being disgraced former New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo.
That was already enough of a disaster for the network coming on top of Cuomo’s firing last Saturday. To top it all off, the outlet told its readers Smollett was “guilty on some charges.”
Just another fiery — if not mostly peaceful — week at state TV over at CNN.
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