2021-10-14 10:17:08 UTC
Journalism as we once knew it is dead and gone. Now it's just activists
pretending to be reporters.
'Big RBG fan' Couric worried Supreme Court justice's criticism of Colin
Kaepernick would undermine her reputation as liberal icon
Journalist Katie Couric selectively edited her 2016 interview with Supreme
Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg by omitting negative comments the justice
made about those who kneel during the national anthem, she admitted in her
Their 2016 chat came in the midst of the furor of former NFL quarterback
Colin Kaepernick's decision to take a knee during the playing of the
national anthem to protest police brutality. Several other professional
athletes began to take his lead and kneel instead of standing during the
anthem. Ginsburg told Couric she was opposed to the action, saying those
who kneel during the anthem were showing "contempt for a government that
has made it possible for their parents and grandparents to live a decent
Couric said she was "conflicted" about including the justice's comment
because she was a "big RBG fan" and admitted to seeking advice from some
fellow journalists about what to do. Ultimately, the story she wrote for
Yahoo! News did include quotes from Ginsburg saying kneelers were "dumb and
disrespectful," but left out the above remarks.
Couric wrote she wanted to "protect" Ginsburg, who died last year, and also
suggested Ginsburg's office had some influence on the final product,
according to the Mail. She called herself a "big RBG fan".
"Couric felt that when Ginsburg said that people like Kaepernick were 'dumb
and disrespectful' they were comments that were 'unworthy of a crusader for
equality' like the liberal Supreme Court justice."
The day after their sit-down, the head of public affairs for the Supreme
Court emailed Couric to say the late justice had "misspoken" and asked that
it be removed from the story.
Infuriated readers and reporters hit Couric for having acted more like an
activist than a journalist.
"The Reload" founder Stephen Gutowski quipped, "I, for one, am shocked to
hear Katie Couric would do something like this."
Gutowski, reporting for the Washington Free Beacon at the time, broke the
story in 2016 that a Couric documentary edited her interview with pro-gun
activists to make them look dumbfounded by one of her questions. The
documentary showed them sitting in silence after she asked them about how
to prevent terrorists and felons from purchasing guns without background
checks, but in reality they immediately answered according to their own
audio of the interview.
Couric and director Stephanie Soechtig defended the decision, but they were
widely criticized for what appeared to be a deliberate effort to falsely
make the gun rights supporters look foolish.
The RBG revelation was one of a few bombshells from Couric's memoir. Other
excerpts from the book show Couric taking hits at fellow female
journalists. Couric accused ABC's Diane Sawyer of exploiting the late
Whitney Houston in their infamous interview in 2002. Couric, who always
competed with Sawyer for interviews, also wondered what the ABC journalist
did to score some of her high-profile interviews.