The On-Air Arrest of CNN’s Omar Jimenez Shows Racism & Censorship in Real Time
Early Friday morning, Omar Jimenez, a Black Latino reporter with CNN, was arrested in Minneapolis while broadcasting live on the city’s ongoing protests. In the broadcast, you can see Jimenez telling police that he and his team would move to wherever they wanted him to and you can see him clearly presenting his press ID.
So when the Minnesota State Patrol wrote on Twitter that the team was released from custody after they were confirmed as being members of the press, it only raised more questions than they answered.
Omar was holding up his press credential on live TV. https://t.co/lTRXttUppD
— adam harris (@AdamHSays) May 29, 2020
They didn’t just (repeatedly) identify themselves, the reporter was holding a mic and talking into a camera, along with two crew members…
There shouldn’t have been any confusion.
Perhaps a review of their radio transmissions will clarify who issued the order to arrest. https://t.co/TwjCs7tFzt
— Steven Portnoy (@stevenportnoy) May 29, 2020
If this is the statement when everyone can see the truth live on CNN for themselves, what happens when the camera is off? https://t.co/MyWtL8rhT4
— Laura Jarrett (@LauraAJarrett) May 29, 2020
Minnesota’s governor, Tim Waltz, called the arrest “unacceptable,” but also called it “inadvertent.” I don’t know, this looks pretty deliberate to me:
— CNN (@CNN) May 29, 2020
CNN has another journalist on the ground in Minneapolis right now, not far from where Jimenez and his team were. Josh Campbell, who is white, has described how different his experience has been. He says “treated much differently” by law enforcement, telling his colleague John Berman:
I was treated much differently than [CNN correspondent Omar Jimenez] was. I’m sitting here talking to the National Guard, talking to the police. They’re asking politely to move here and there. A couple times I’ve moved closer than they would like. They asked politely to move back. They didn’t pull out the handcuffs. Lot different here than what Omar experienced.
Since Jimenez’s arrest, Derek Chauvin, the police officer who can be seen on video killing George Floyd (or rather, one of them) has been arrested and charged with manslaughter and third-degree murder. At the time, though, four days after Floyd’s murder, the discrepancy was glaring.
A black reporter covering the murder of a black man was arrested before the white man that committed the murder.
— Nabilah Islam for Congress (@NabilahforGA07) May 29, 2020
This black reporter was arrested faster than the cop who murdered a defenseless black man on camera
— Philadelphia Loudface (@mister_loudface) May 29, 2020
As for Jimenez, he’s back out reporting.
And we’re back pic.twitter.com/dkYHYxe0u7
— Omar Jimenez (@OmarJimenez) May 29, 2020
Also, I just noticed on Twitter today that Jimenez has an album out, you know, if you’re looking for ways to support him.
This may come as a shock to some of you but I’m releasing an album and it’s called The A-Block. Here’s a sneak preview 🤫. It’s actually only 6 songs so it’s technically an EP but we don’t need to be technical about this. Stay tuned 👀 #OJTrop pic.twitter.com/Rmhk7QvSur
— Omar Jimenez (@OmarJimenez) September 19, 2019
And while we’re on the subject of supporting things, this is a great list of resources.
we’re supporting a movement constellation of formations
you know what to do
— Minnesota Freedom Fund (@MNFreedomFund) May 27, 2020
I’m especially awed by all the support for Floyd’s memorial fund. The last time I looked at it it had raised about $60K. It’s now over $2 million. And with that coming from about 100,000 donors, it really shows the power of what $5 or $10 or $20 can do.
(via CNN, image: CNN)
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