They don’t call it fake news for nothing.  Earlier this week a story appeared in the Idaho Statesman.  I’m now having trouble finding it online.  Go figure!  The Associated Press is disavowing the piece.  “STORY REMOVED” is part of the AP headline.

Here’s what happened.  The paper reported migrant children were being harassed and threatened.  While being bused to Head Start.  Harassed by angry white people who don’t like little 5-year-old brown kids.  The accusation was too good to ignore by a news media looking to carry forward a narrative.  White people bad.  Latin people victims.

You see, there’s much more to this story but a newspaper decided to fill in the blanks

This story echoed across America.  I’ve checked online and seen it reported by the Washington Post and a TV station in Orlando.  Giving the impression the average Idahoan is a racist.  A stereotype promoted by many coastal elites and now even in homegrown news media.

The AP retraction included a euphemism.  “It was based on a story by The Idaho Statesman, which relied on inaccurate information from the Community Council of Idaho.”  “Inaccurate” means wrong.  A claim was reported as fact this is happening across the state even while only one county was the focus of the piece.

What made me nervous when I saw the initial story was the lack of evidence.  If this was commonplace there would likely by police reports.  The story never even referenced an attempt to speak with the Canyon County Sheriff.  I know the man.  He’s very media friendly.  In other words, someone driving a Head Start bus assumed someone else was being mean.  Maybe another driver was swerving to miss an animal, in a hurry or thought the bus driver was being erratic.  Did the bus driver get flipped off?  Or cussed out?  Maybe another driver was distracted and then quickly stopped.  You see, there’s much more to this story but a newspaper decided to fill in the blanks with what it wanted.  Then the editors and reporters will blame talk radio for harming the paper’s credibility.

This is Idaho’s version of the Covington Catholic students.  News media needs to examine its collective conscience.

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