The Rush To Declare That Ma’Khia Bryant Was Unarmed Proves That Narrative Matters More Than Truth

NEW YORK, NY - NOVEMBER 26: Benjamin Crump, lawyer for Michael Brown Jr's family, speaks at a press conference on the eve of Thanksgiving to pray and address the events of the last few days regarding the grand jury verdict of police officer Darren Wilson on November 26, 2014 in New York City. Wilson shot and killed Michael Brown Jr in Ferguson, MO, on August 9, 2014.
Andrew Burton/Getty Images

Our society has a problem.

It’s a problem which involves complete impatience and irreverence when it comes to evidence.

Specifically, evidence in cases involving police shootings.

In the aftermath of any police shooting, it has now become routine for various influential figures to fall over themselves to create a narrative of unquestionable systemic racism. If that requires a complete disregard for the truth, so be it.

The goal is not to first uncover the truth and act accordingly, but to present the necessary scenario required to further justify their own existence as “activists.”

We have seen this on multiple occasions, with perhaps the most famous example being the widely debunked “Hands Up, Don’t Shoot” narrative regarding the police shooting of Michael Brown in 2014.

On Tuesday evening, social media was set ablaze in response to reports of a police shooting in Columbus, Ohio. According to Ben Crump, a lawyer who can frequently be found at the forefront of police shooting cases, rushed to declare that 16-year-old Ma’Khia Bryant was “unarmed” when she was shot by police.

“As we breathed a collective sigh of relief today, a community in Columbus felt the sting of another police shooting as [Columbus Police] killed an unarmed 15yo Black girl named Makiyah Bryant. Another child lost! Another hashtag,” Crump tweeted.

Protests immediately broke out in Columbus, while hashtags like “SayHerName” instantly trended.

The problem? Crump’s claim is completely untrue. According to video footage released soon after the incident, Ma’Khia Bryant was not unarmed. She appeared to be holding a knife and was about to stab another young black girl.

Still images from the video footage appear to show Ma’Khia Bryant holding a knife in an offensive stance, poised to strike the potential victim.

Based on this evidence, the shooting appears to be completely justified. However, beyond this debate of whether such use of force was justified, the facts being presented by supposedly responsible parties are simply untrue.

Crump — yet again — promoted a falsehood. Whether this is intentional or not (the tweet, after all, is still up), it is the intellectual responsibility of those who claim to advocate for any cause to present accurate information in the pursuit of their goals.

Luckily for figures like Crump, the falsehoods enabled by their rush to reach a given conclusion are rapidly ignored by the legacy media, who share their same desire to promote a narrative. As The Washington Examiner noted, for example, The New York Times omitted Crump’s allegation that Bryant was unarmed in their reporting — arguably the key variable in determining whether police use of force was justified or not.

When it becomes obvious that facts don’t matter, this only begs one question. What does matter?

Ian Haworth is an Editor and Writer for The Daily Wire. Follow him on Twitter at @ighaworth.

The views expressed in this piece are the author’s own and do not necessarily represent those of The Daily Wire.

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