Brian Stelter of CNN got slapped down on Twitter on the 20th anniversary of 9/11 when he quoted an article from the Associated Press that suggested journalists were the ones to lead America through the news of the terror attacks because top federal officials were “hiding in bunkers” during and afterward.
Network TV anchors were “the closest thing that America had to national leaders on 9/11,” the AP’s David Bauder claims in the piece.
“Most Americans were guided through the unimaginable by one of three anchors: Tom Brokaw of NBC News, Peter Jennings of ABC and Dan Rather of CBS,” Bauder adds.
According to Fox News, Stelter retweeted the nonsense story, adding his own two cents that “political leaders were in bunkers or otherwise out of sight” during and after the attacks.
“Out of sight”
Despite the pushback, Stelter’s tweet has not been deleted and is still up on Twitter as of Sunday.
Network TV anchors were “the closest thing that America had to national leaders on 9/11. They were the moral authority for the country on that first day,” especially with political leaders in bunkers or otherwise out of sight… https://t.co/j12NRPr2BM
— Brian Stelter (@brianstelter) September 11, 2021
According to Fox, former The View star Meghan McCain responded that the tweet was meant “to be incendiary on a dark anniversary” and pointed out that first responders were quick to rush into danger and that then-New York City Mayor Rudy Giuliani, Sen. Hillary Clinton (D-NY), Gov. George Pataki (R), President George W. Bush, and Sen. Chuck Schumer (D-NY) were all “real” leaders who gave early and immediate responses to the attacks.
Other commenters pointed out that some of the networks weren’t even broadcasting in New York on 9/11 after the attacks because their antennae had been on top of the collapsed Tower One of the Trade Center, and added that the AP journalist and Stelter were inappropriately making the events of 9/11 about themselves.
Not backing down
According to Fox, Stelter later tried to back off from his tweet, saying that he was only sharing someone else’s words, but that did not go over any better than the original tweet.
Several users pointed out that Stelter added his own comments to the tweet that suggested he agreed with it. And why would he have shared it in the first place, without disagreeing, if it didn’t resonate with him?
Far from being a hero, Stelter’s tweet and subsequent waffling show just exactly how heroic journalists still are not when it comes to anything that requires courage, including standing by your opinions and being able to admit when you were wrong — neither of which the CNN host did.
Those in the mainstream media have gotten so far away from reporting actual news in most cases that it’s difficult to see what they are useful for anymore, or why anyone should even tune in to hear their biased take on the day’s events at this point.