By Gary Hunt, Outpost of Freedom
During the siege in Waco, an attorney contacted me. His name was Rick Morris, with Melvin Belli’s office. He had found out about the Power of Attorney that I had obtained from David Koresh.
Rick spent almost a week in Waco, but could find nothing that would help to utilize the Power of Attorney to bring things to a peaceful solution. By then, the government had decided, after having rejected him initially, the Dick Degurien could represent Koresh.
One evening, Rick Morris called and said that we were having dinner with a producer from CBS. Dick knew him and had arranged the dinner meeting to see if that would help with our attempt to get access to Mt. Carmel.
At diner, I was introduced to Charles, the producer out of Miami, Florida, and one of his reporters, also from Miami. As they explained it, they were on their ‘tour of duty’ in Waco. It seems that the networks were rotating people in and out because the length of the siege had exceeded their original expectations.
During dinner, I asked Charles why they weren’t telling the truth about what was happening in Waco. Charles did not attempt to claim that they were telling the truth, I believe he figured I knew what was really happening. Instead, he replied, “Gary, I have a wife and two sons.” He went on the explain that his job, as a producer, was to assure that program met the criteria of his bosses. He explained that there were no ‘written policies’, however, at cocktail parties, dinners and other social functions the higher ups would always make sure that the lower downs understood what the ‘policy’ of the network was(policy would include what stories to cover, what perspective to put on stories, what stories not to cover, etc.). He said that as these ‘policies’ worked their way down from owners, through the different tiers, each tier would add a little comfort to what he understood to be desirable. By the time it got to him, it might be far more restrictive than what the owners wanted, but, well, it is important to keep your job so that you can support your family.
He told me about a young video-journalism student that had graduated from Miami-Dade Community College. He had excellent grades, and his portfolio was very well done., so, they hired him. The young journalist was given several assignments, his first week. He did a ‘bang up’ job on the stories, including the 5 Ws (Who, what, why, where, when of journalism), however, the content and presentation was not exactly what the ‘policy’ wanted. None of the stories were aired, and that first week was also the last week of his journalism career with CBS.
Every morning the FBI held a press conference. It began with an update, from the FBI perspective, and then went to eruption and answer format.
An aside: while in Waco, I met the press from various countries. In particular, I got to know reporters from Australia, England and France who were as critical of the American press as I was. They mocked the American press for dutifully going to the press conferences, writing their stories, and then attending the local ‘discussion groups’ at one of the hotel lounges, very seldom venturing out to seek other newsworthy information about what was happening a few miles down the road.
These foreign journalists were constantly looking for local people, especially Davidians, or friends of the Davidians, who could add to the story of what really was happening. Of course, their reports were not published in this country, though a few that I did read were very critical of the great American “Free Press”.
If we look at the ramifications of what the press did in Waco, we can come to some pretty frightening conclusions.
The Freedom of the Press, as defined in the Anti-Federalist Papers, is:
“The FREEDOM OF THE PRESS hath, in consequence thereof, been esteemed one of its safeguards. That freedom gives the right, at all times, to every citizen to lay his sentiments, in a decent manner, before the people, If he will take that trouble upon himself, whether they are on point or not, his countrymen are obliged to him for so doing; for, at least, they lead to an examination of the subject upon which he writes.”
“John DeWitt,” Essay III, Nov. 5, 1787
It has always been considered the bulwark of liberty, since it could be relied upon to expose the misdeeds of government. But, that was back when each paper was owned by different people, and the opinions expressed were as varied as the ownership of the press.
Today, three syndicates own over 99% of the printed newspapers. This leaves the control of the opinions (and the content) to three people, probably close friends, who have nearly absolute control over what is presented to the public as “truth”.
What effect did this monopolistic control of the press have on Waco?
As has been explained, what went out to mainstream America was what the government ‘created’ to excuse actions committed by the government. It was also the means by which the Davidians were made out as evil, child molesting, people. It if carried the message that implied that child molestation was something that the government (federal) had an obligation to deal with. The real reason behind the raid in Waco was lost to the contrived stories that were presented to millions of people.
The final result was that through demonization and distortion of truth, America was almost cheerful when the FBI promulgated fire swept through a wooden church, resulting in the death of many dozens of men, women and children — with nearly no expression of regret.
There can be little doubt that the press, as it was in Waco, is complicate in the murder of innocent people by their refusal to take an objective look at events in which the government is involved.
A question that we must ask ourselves is, does that make the press an accessory to murder?