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Narratives are stubborn. Despite the evidence to the contrary in Portland & beyond - officers injured, Molotov cocktails & ammo seized, etc. - many insist the protests are “peaceful.”

Are you going to believe the coverage, or your lying eyes?

@ABC might have the most creative descriptions of active decisions by protestors.

Here we see that peaceful protests “intensified” and “morphed” seemingly all on their own.
Also @ABC with more (admittedly more normal) use of passive voice here with “turned.”

Could the reason the police decided to “declare riots” have anything to do with...the riots?
@Reuters selected a pretty incredible image to describe “peaceful protests”
But @NewsHour is right on their heels with a similar take.

These were well after all the well-documented violence.
According to @USATODAY Trump is considering sending officers “despite mostly peaceful protests.”

It’s like describing a burning building as “mostly not on fire” - it may, very literally, be true, but it really, really misses the point.
This might be my favorite

@USATODAY notes that “some of the pillaging” was tied to “otherwise peaceful marches.”

“The Viking landings in England were mostly peaceful but for some of the pillaginging” USA Today, 900 AD or so.
Apparently showing scenes from what’s happening in Portland amounts to a “dark and exaggerated portrayal” of what’s going on, per @nytimes.
Also credit to @nytimes, I don’t think I’ve ever heard “a complicated mix of emotions and grievances” used as a euphemism for violence.
A clever tactic from @washingtonpost to split up the protestors into good and bad camps. It allows them to report both that “protests have been largely peaceful” and pointing out 12 officers were (peacefully?) injured along with mass property damage.
You had to be able to guess that @CNN was going to chime in to the “mostly peaceful” dialogue.
The most significant light protestors are “shining” are the lasers blinding law enforcement, @CNN.
@CBSNews got into the action. Apparently these “peaceful protests” just happened to turn deadly.
And then the peaceful protests were “upended by violence” per @CBSThisMorning
I’m sorry I saw this so you all do too. (@FastCompany)
And some elected officials didn’t exactly cover themselves in glory. Leading the way was @RepJerryNadler, who called the crown “peaceful protestors” and said the idea that there were riots was “a myth”
It’s been tough on @tedwheeler
Your reminder that the @UN is a joke who spends infinitely more time virtue signaling than addressing real crises, like a genocide in China, and your tax dollars support it.
And the usual Big Brains of the internet chimed in. Here’s @davidaxelrod with a full-blown conspiracy theory.
Never change, @SethAbramson
Interesting hill to die on @EdwardTHardy
And some just have their eyes wide shut. Here’s @themaxburns, @Amy_Siskind and very normal @marwilliamson
I like to call this the “other than that, Mrs. Lincoln, how did you enjoy the mostly peaceful play” school of journalism.

Yes, while the violence in question may not have dominated the time of the engagement, it still clearly defines it.

Pretending otherwise is gaslighting.
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