Commentary

Capitol Hill Riot Highlights More Media Blind Spots

As shocking as the riot on Capitol Hill was, there had been signs on social media that the mob violence was premeditated. I only know this because technology columnist Kara Swishersaid as much in a podcast after the incident.

"On my other podcast yesterday, I said that I expected violence at the Capitol after I spent time on a variety of social-media sites, where you could see it coming," she said.

I don't mean to scold Swisher for not sharing her predictions earlier, and with more tangible examples. However, I wish the news media had taken a closer look at what's happening on social networks and report on potential threats.
President Trump's erratic behavior, especially in the weeks since the election, received plenty of press scrutiny. Much of the coverage focused on his futile efforts to overturn the results of the U.S. election, and how he undermined Republican senators in the runoff elections in Georgia.

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There hadn't been enough coverage of the potentially deadly outcomes of that pursuit.

Reporters are now asking those questions, and whether Trump needs to be removed from office immediately, before he does more damage. They're also demanding to know why the Capitol wasn't better protected from a possible incursion.
Videos from the scene showed how easily Trump supporters were able to overwhelm security forces and enter chambers typically reserved for nonviolent debate. The intelligence services of hostile countries and terrorist groups are likely taking notes. Let's hope the press also learned some lessons.
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