Today Jacob Blake conceded he was armed with a knife when he was shot by police.

A lot of people insisted this wasn’t the case in order to fit their narrative. That’s bad. And we’ve gotta talk about these things - I try to explain why below.
First and foremost, this situation is awful. A man was paralyzed. His children surely traumatized.

But as I’ll go into more depth on later, it’s also important that media and others report these sorts of situations accurately.

It’s clear that @cnnbrk didn’t.
The actual reporting on this was actually better than I think a lot of conservatives realize - lots of outlets couched their coverage by saying that it had been reported that Blake was unarmed.

@Reuters didn’t.
We saw something similar from @politico. Many outlets have made corrections or updated their headlines, too, as they should when they’ve reported something that proves not to be accurate.
There were plenty of individual actors in media who also used their platforms to say something that simply wasn’t true. That includes @AprilDRyan. Reporters should know better than to rush to judgement on these kinds of things.
A lot of the commentary around Blake and other Black men who are shot and killed by the police is terrible & often deliberately tries to obfuscate the culpability of cops.

But what @WajahatAli does here is just the inverse of that for his own narrative. That’s really bad, too.
But the worst offenders here were the elected officials who ran with unconfirmed reports or speculation because it fit with their narrative.

That includes @RepSwalwell.
That’s particularly important when you’re going to make sweeping claims about the police based on an incident you don’t understand, something @IlhanMN does. Her city, Minneapolis, has paid a high price for the riots (and policies) this narrative helped fuel.
All of our prayers should be with Jacob Blake and his family. But @tedlieu’s contention about what the police did is simply not true, even if it may advance his particular political narrative.
One politician who did this that really stuck with me was @chicagosmayor, whose city has its own host of problems related to crime and policing.

The last thing any of those problems need is an inaccurate accelerant to be added to the situation.
There are, unfortunately, a lot of other examples of this from elected officials. Here’s @SenatorDurbin, @MondaireJones and @ReverendWarnock doing the same thing as many others.
I’ll pause here to repeat that conservatives - particularly Christians - need a lot more charity and empathy when it comes to issues of race and policing. This situation was and remains a tragedy. We should - must - be concerned about those impacted.
And none of this should be read as an excuse or a rationalization for what happened to Jacob Blake, or to say that people of color in this country don’t have a right to be mad about their shared experience in America’s past and present.
But the truth has to count for something in all this.

We can’t hope to improve concerns among people of color - particularly Black men - related to the police if we’re building a narrative on things that simply aren’t true.
Anyway. It wasn’t just politicians and the media, of course. Surely anyone and everyone remembers the way that @espn framed this issue.
A lot of activists used this as a moment to push a narrative. I wish they would realize that, more than anything, playing fast & loose w/ the facts detracts from the work they’re doing for racial & police justice. Here’s @MsPackyetti, someone whom I really respect, for @MSNBC.
This, from @marwilliamson, is a perfect encapsulation of the mentality that motivates some people within and beyond politics when it comes to talking about these issues.

I think whoever had said that “we don’t have all the facts yet” was wise.
I won’t pretend that I think all of those who pushed this talking point were necessarily doing it in good faith.

In particular, I think that @DrIbram tends to operate in bad faith, in this case and more broadly.
This is equally true from a lot of people on Twitter who tend to run with stories for likes and clicks, accuracy be damned.

Here we’ve got @ananavarro, @cmclymer and @MaryLTrump.

There were plenty of others.
There’s no joy in this situation. And we desperately need a robust conversation about policing in this country.

But it doesn’t help when those with platforms push falsehoods to fit their perspectives. That seems like what happened here. It only pulls us further from a solution.
These are difficult, heavy subjects to discuss. The last thing we need is for people to dump gasoline on a combustible situation. You’ll remember the damage - including 2 deaths - the riots following Blake’s shooting led to. There are real world consequences for these things.
And again none of this is to say that the cops did the right thing (I have no idea if they did) or that Black men are treated fairly by the police in this country.

But if we’re going to make progress on these issues, I think that starts with telling the truth.
We can either face our shared problems in this country for what they are or what we wish they would be.

I think we should start doing a lot more of the former.

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More from @DrewHolden360

15 Jan
In case you need a thread about all the people who called conservatives evil for saying lockdowns might be a bad idea, I’ve got one from June👇
May be time for a new one huh
Here’s the latest on lockdowns not working. washingtonexaminer.com/news/strict-co…
Read 5 tweets
14 Jan
Earnest question: is there any evidence that the people who stormed the Capitol were white supremacists, as they’re so often described?

They were many things - unpatriotic jackasses most of all - but I haven’t seen anything to indicate white supremacy motivated this thing.
That “white supremacist” has become just an amorphous descriptor of people the left doesn’t like is a really, really bad thing. Especially when censorship and cancel culture are en vogue.
Also - to be clear - I’m confident there were white supremacists who were involved. But we can’t define groups by a particular subset of their actors just because it’s convenient.
Read 6 tweets
11 Jan
There are maybe 30 separate reasons this is funny
“The architect of the fraudulent Iraq War, who has supported Democratic candidates for years, has formally broken with the GOP. Take that, Republicans!!”
Read 5 tweets
10 Jan
I’m worried the hyperbole is getting a bit out of control with all this.
Twitter as a medium is also very, very shitty at conveying nuance (obviously) but the real problem here strikes me as about our collective inability to talk about bad things without comparing them to much, much worse things.
While I certainly think the storming of the Capitol is awful - as I’ve said repeatedly - on the scale of worst things to ever happen to America it seems a little bit less bad than 9/11 to my simplistic worldview.
Read 6 tweets
7 Jan
I’m open I let my emotions get the better of me yesterday. I don’t have a column or anything like that, so I figured I would lay out my thinking about what happened at the Capitol where I lay out most things - a not-so-quick 🧵.
First, what we saw yesterday with the storming of the US Capitol was vile, barbaric, and unamerican. There is no excuse that exists for a mob to break into a federal building, particularly one that was housing the entire US government. It was despicable.
It’s important we start here because every other piece of commentary - esp on media hypocrisy - is secondary.

Sure, we need to be able to walk & chew gum and talk about issues in parallel. But that requires defining what issues must take priority over others. This one is tops.
Read 17 tweets
6 Jan
I don’t care how much you don’t like the press.

It is absolutely, patently absurd to pretend that the riots that shook DC and other cities by BLM and antifa could hold a candle to the threatening insurrectionist activity we saw today. (1/6)
Today’s riot and assault on the US Capitol isn’t some symbolic issue.

The national guard is actively being deployed to the US Capitol in response to seditious threats against the US Congress, cheered on by a president who had rallied these rioters to DC beforehand. (2/6)
I’ve seen a lot of you on here spend your time today criticizing the media and the left for being concerned about today’s events but not the riots we saw here, in Minneapolis, in NYC and beyond last summer.

You are wrong to do so. (3/6)
Read 6 tweets

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