Hillary Clinton Calls For ‘Global Reckoning’ With ‘Disinformation’

Former First Lady Hillary Clinton is advising that social media needs a “global reckoning” with disinformation, and urged the media to “rid themselves of both-sideism.”

In an interview with the Guardian, Clinton made the confusing argument that social media companies are at once too powerful, but also how they also need to tamp down more on certain kinds of views and information. 

She also bashed the mainstream press, saying, “They’ve got to rid themselves of both-sidesism.”

“It is not the same to say something critical of somebody on the other side of the aisle and to instigate an attack on the Capitol and to vote against certifying the election.”

“Those are not comparable, and it goes back to the problem of the press actually coming to grips with how out of bounds and dangerous the new political philosophy on the right happens to be.”

Oddly enough, Clinton never opposed anyone objecting to election certifications when Democrats did it over and over again both in 2017 and 2005.

RELATED: Meghan McCain Calls Trump ‘Cheeto Jesus’ And Defends Liz Cheney

Hillary Clinton Wants Political Opponents Shut Down Over ‘Misinformation’

Can you even recall a time in our nation when Democrats were so open and brazen about their attempts to shut down free speech in America?

Hillary Clinton proceeded to attack Big Tech companies, who have banned President Trump from ever offering his opinion on their platforms, for not doing enough to stop the spread of “misinformation.”

“The technology platforms are so much more powerful than any organ of the so-called mainstream press,” she claimed.

“And I do think that there has to be not just an American reckoning but a global reckoning with the disinformation, with the monopolistic power and control, with the lack of accountability that the platforms currently enjoy,” Clinton continued.

Clinton, who has repeatedly blamed her 2016 presidential election loss on Russian conspiracies, called for world governments to step in and regulate Big Tech.

“So governments are going to have to decide right now that the platforms have to be held to some kind of standard, and it’s tricky,” Clinton said.

Former President Donald Trump was banned from social media for daring to claim the 2020 election was stolen. Here you have Clinton, who claimed that Trump was an “illegitimate” President, saying this isn’t enough.

And Democrats think Republicans are fascists?

RELATED: Hillary Clinton Urges Trump Officials Involved in Impeachment Inquiry to ‘Tell the Truth’

She Needs A Global Reckoning With Herself

Where to even begin with this obvious case of projection on the part of Hillary Clinton? Perhaps the media needs a global reckoning with her own history of lies and misinformation.

Clinton, after all, admitted that her lawyer, Marc Elias, paid for the infamous Steele dossier.

Elias, in a lawsuit filed by former Trump campaign adviser Carter Page, was accused of using “false information, misrepresentations and other misconduct to direct the power of the international intelligence apparatus and the media industry against” him to “further their political agenda.”

The dossier, which the Wall Street Journal has described as uncorroborated “junk,” was the basis for the Russia/Trump conspiracy news that dominated media during the former President’s administration.

Clinton, of course, was also integral in the lie that the Benghazi attacks were the result of an obscure YouTube video.

Former National Security Adviser under Barack Obama, Susan Rice, even claimed in her book that she was pushed to do five Sunday television interviews by the Obama administration to cover for Clinton by insisting on that story.

What other misinformation came from Hillary Clinton? Well, you could write a book.

Dodging sniper fire in Bosnia, claiming she was named after Sir Edmund Hillary, being “dead broke” after leaving the White House, and trying to join the Marines come to mind.

All of these are provable lies, some mundane, some quite serious. All misinformation that, if social media giants had a global reckoning over, would result in her banning as well.

The problem being, the media isn’t interested in ‘both-sideism.’ In essence, Hillary has already been granted her wish to stifle free speech.


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Devin Nunes On Big Tech Parler Ban: ‘There Should Be A Racketeering Investigation’

Republicans Congressman Devin Nunes, the ranking Republican on the House Intelligence Committee, said Sunday that the Justice Department should launch an investigation into tech companies’ efforts to remove Parler from their platforms.

Nunes made his comments on Fox News Channel’s “Sunday Morning Futures.”

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Nunes On Parler Ban: ‘It’s Far Worse Than What I Could Even Imagine’

“Well, Maria, when I wrote that book, I was hoping to warn Americans so that they would vote right and that maybe this wouldn’t happen and this could be prevented,” Nunes told Fox News host Maria Bartiromo.

Nunes said the move by Big Tech violated antitrust laws, civil rights and the Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations Act.

“Unfortunately, it’s far worse than what I could even imagine,” Nunes said. “The effect of this is that there is no longer a free and open social media company or site for any American to get on any longer, because these big companies, Apple, Amazon, Google, they have just destroyed a — what was likely — Parler is likely a billion-dollar company.”

“Poof, it’s gone,” he added.

‘This Is Clearly A Violation Of Antitrust’

Nunes then stressed that conservatives need to have the same social media abilities that non-conservatives enjoys.

“But it’s more than just the financial aspect to that,” Nunes explained. “Republicans have no way to communicate.”

“If — and it doesn’t even matter if you’re a Republican or conservative,” he continued.

“If you don’t want to be regulated by left-wingers that are at Twitter and Facebook and Instagram, where you get shadowbanned, nobody gets to see you — nobody gets to see you, they get to decide what’s violent or not violent, it’s preposterous,” Nunes said.

Nunes then cited the violation of antitrust laws.

“So, I don’t know where the hell the Department of Justice is at right now or the FBI,” Nunes said. “This is clearly a violation of antitrust, civil rights, the RICO statute.”

RELATED: GOP Sen. Ben Sasse Will Consider Impeachment, Ilhan Omar Predicts President Trump WILL Be Removed

Nunes Denounces ‘Attack’ On Parler And Conservatives Being Able To Operate On Social Media

“There should be a racketeering investigation on all the people that coordinated this attack on not only a company but on all of those like us, like me, like you, Maria. I have 3 million followers on Parler,” he added.

“Tonight, I will no longer be able to communicate with those people,” Nunes lamented. “And they’re Americans.”

The post Devin Nunes On Big Tech Parler Ban: ‘There Should Be A Racketeering Investigation’ appeared first on The Political Insider.

This is why Facebook is suddenly emboldened to deplatform Donald Trump

After years of pressure from outside and inside the company, Facebook has (for the time being) deplatformed wannabe fascist Donald Trump. 

We believe the risks of allowing President Trump to continue to use our service during this period are simply too great, so we are extending the block we have placed on his Facebook and Instagram accounts indefinitely and for at least the next two weeks. pic.twitter.com/JkyGOTYB1Z

— Facebook Newsroom (@fbnewsroom) January 7, 2021

This comes after years of frustration with Facebook’s refusal to police Trump’s most incendiary rhetoric. In June of last year, Facebook employees staged a virtual walkout to protest their company’s refusal to label Trump’s lies the way that Twitter had decided to do. “Personally, I have a visceral negative reaction to this kind of divisive and inflammatory rhetoric,” Zuckerberg said in a post to his Facebook page in response. “But I’m responsible for reacting not just in my personal capacity but as the leader of an institution committed to free expression.”

Yet those notions of “free expression” are suddenly moot. What changed? Well, the terrorist siege of the Capitol was clearly a factor, but there was likely an even bigger one: Missouri Sen. Josh Hawley is suddenly on the wrong side of history. 

No one has been more aggressive in attacking “Big Tech” and its supposed “censorship” of conservative voices than Hawley. 

Sen. Josh Hawley, a Missouri Republican, has emerged as a surprising Republican voice on those issues. The youngest working lawmaker in the Senate, Hawley has taken a lead on the ongoing investigations into Facebook, joining with Sens. Ed Markey (D-MA) and Richard Blumenthal (D-CT) in February for a letter probing the company’s teen data collection practices, and penning legislation with Democrats that would extend more rigorous privacy protections for children. He’s also been outspoken in calling for changes to Section 230 of the Communications Decency Act, often seen as the central legal protection for online platforms.

Facebook may not like the scrutiny on its noxious data-collection policies, but that’s a bipartisan concern. The bigger danger was the last sentence above—Hawley’s advocacy for stripping social media companies of their Section 230 protections. 

As you might remember, Section 230 was the real reason that Trump vetoed the Pentagon/national security budget bill, the only veto to be overridden by Congress during his single term in office. It protects online platforms from legal liability of those writing on that platform. It’s literally the reason Daily Kos allows its community to exist and thrive. Without it, Facebook and Daily Kos and every other site with community generated content (including comments!) would be legally liable for everything posted on that site or platform. 

Section 230 is existential to Daily Kos, and it’s extra existential to Facebook. So conservatives have tried to use it as a cudgel to block the big social media companies from monitoring and limiting certain content—like the false bullshit and incendiary stuff that conservatives love to post. 

Now the notion that Facebook is anti-conservative is laughable, as can be seen by the platform’s most shared content on January 5: 

The top-performing link posts by U.S. Facebook pages in the last 24 hours are from: 1. Franklin Graham 2. Dan Bongino 3. Franklin Graham 4. Donald J. Trump 5. Franklin Graham 6. ABC News 7. Ben Shapiro 8. Occupy Democrats 9. The Dodo 10. Fox News

— Facebook's Top 10 (@FacebooksTop10) January 5, 2021

1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 7, and 10 are all conservative voices. And I’m not cherry-picking, this Twitter account lists Facebook’s top 10 links every single day. The list is always dominated by politically conservative voices. In fact, Ben Shapiro’s Daily Wire blatantly breaks Facebook’s rules in promoting his material, yet Facebook has been too afraid to act, lest it give Hawley further ammunition for his anti-Section 230 crusade. 

Last week, Popular Information exposed how The Daily Wire has gained unprecedented distribution on Facebook through its relationship with Mad World News. Five large Facebook pages controlled by Mad World News expanded The Daily Wire's audience by millions through the coordinated posting of dozens of links from The Daily Wire each day.

Facebook previously said it had looked into the matter, found no evidence of a violation, and could not prove a financial relationship. The company now admits the two publishers are working together.

After denying what everyone knew to be obvious, Facebook finally admitted that Daily Wire was breaking its rules. And the response? “We are also warning Daily Wire and will demote them if we see this behavior continue.” Oh no. A warning. Click on that link and see how blatant Shapiro’s conduct has been. But Facebook did nothing. 

And similarly, Facebook refused to act on Trump, while its CEO Mark Zuckerberg regularly dined at the White House. 

Yet here we are today, with Facebook issuing perhaps the most aggressive deplatforming of the major social media outlets, calling the suspension “indefinite.” By all indications, it’ll last through the rest of Trump’s presidency. And if no one can control Trump now, imagine when he’s a private citizen again? He’ll be even worse, completely subsumed by QAnon conspiracy theories with little checks on his ability to vomit that crap on Twitter and Facebook. Without the protections of his office, there’ll be even less hesitation for those platforms to keep him around. Trump’s ability to do damage on Parler will be limited. 

But given Facebook’s fear of riling up conservative critics, wouldn’t deplatforming Trump, even temporarily, be problematic? Well, that’s where Josh Hawley comes into play. 

1. Republicans lost the Senate

Hawley’s ability to call for hearings and use the Senate majority as a platform for his anti-Facebook crusade is obviously degraded. Democrats will want to probe into Facebook for anti-trust and privacy violation issues, but there’s less appetite for an ideological effort to overturn Section 230. And while some Democrats have made noise about Section 230, they have far bigger priorities to deal with, and they will be more amenable to arguments against messing with it (or at least, protecting sites like this one with any changes). 

2. No one can pretend Trump’s Q-flavored rhetoric and supporters aren’t dangerous

Republicans and other Trump defenders claimed that no one took Trump literally, that it was all figurative! Turns out, the deplorables were absolutely taking his rhetoric literally. “Stand back and stand by” was literally a call to be ready for action. 

And people died as our own Capitol was taken over by terrorists, putting Congress and the vice president in grave mortal danger.  

3. And now, Josh Hawley is on the wrong side of history

I’ll have more to say on this in the coming days, but Wednesday’s siege of the Capitol changed everything. 

On Tuesday, Republicans were bought into the Trump wing of the Republican Party, doing their damndest to cater to the crazy deplorables. We saw this in the challenges to the electoral votes of Arizona, and the planned challenges to other states. Rudy Giuliani was even pressuring its allies in the Senate to challenge up to 10 states to gum up the works! Hawley and Cruz and others were tripping over themselves to prove the most Trumpy, looking toward the 2024 presidential election (as if Trump would bless anyone not named “Trump” as his successor). 

Then the siege happened, and everything has changed. Those gallows and zip ties weren’t just for Democrats. In fact, they seemed even more directed at Republicans and Vice President Mike Pence himself, traitors in the eyes of the deplorables. There was real fear in the statements put out by Republicans in the aftermath of the attack, doing little to tamp down on Democratic calls for 25th Amendment or impeachment solutions. In fact, some of them seemed to tacitly approve of them. 

When the dust cleared, Republican appetite for more challenges evaporated, yet there was one a-hole still pushing them—Josh Hawley, the same guy who had cheered on the terrorists moments before their attack began. He’s steadfastly refused to distance himself from the mob. He still sees them as his allies and pals and best path toward the 2024 nomination. He has no plans to give that up. 

Problem is, a big chunk of his party sees the deplorables as a problem—a problem electorally (they will further repel suburban voters and motivate core Democratic constituencies), and a personal safety problem. They created this monster, and it’s clear many Republicans have little appetite to keep feeding it.

So you can see Hawley’s problem, as he refuses to back off. Without even talking about the coming Republican civil war, it’s clear that Hawley’s personal brand is now far less daunting and scary than it was a mere two days ago. It’s as if Reps. Louie Gohmert or Jim Jordan were your chief nemesis. You can laugh them off as ideological cranks, once elevated by Trump, but now pushed back to back-bencher status. 

That’s not to say that Hawley won’t be a real threat moving forward, but he’s now marked as a deplorable at a time that even Republicans want to distance themselves from Trump and his deplorables. He’s lost credibility. And with that loss of credibility, he’s a lot less scary to Facebook. So much so, that it’s easy for them to say “that content is incendiary” and they ban it, not worried that Hawley can muster the political capital to do anything about it.  

CNN: Conservatives Leaving Facebook And Twitter For Parler Is A ‘Threat To Democracy’

In CNN’s analysis of how conservative voters are handling the presidential election results, reporter Pamela Brown said that conservatives leaving social media platforms like Twitter and Facebook over speech suppression was a “threat to democracy.” 

CNN’s Brian Stelter complained about smaller right-leaning news channels, like Newsmax, getting more viewers recently as conservatives hammer Fox News over its election coverage and what they view as anti-Trump bias.

RELATED: Meghan McCain Confronts CNN Host Brian Stelter On His Network’s Many Failings

Stelter: Conservatives Leaving Facebook And Twitter For ‘Safer Space’

Stelter said to Brown, “I think, big picture, Pamela, here is the concerning trend line here. People are going more and more into their own echo chambers, more into their own bubbles, especially Trump voters.”

“There’s this new social media app, called Parler, getting a lot of attention,” Stelter continued. 

He added, “Because conservatives are leaving, saying they’re leaving Twitter and Facebook, going off to Parler because they believe Parler is a safer space for them.”

“What we’re seeing is even more of a bunker mentality in right-wing media,” Stelter said.“Ultimately, that’s not good for the country.”

That’s when Brown associated freedom of speech and choice with undermining democratic values.

“No, it is not good,” Brown responded (emphasis added). “It is a threat to democracy that these people are in echo chambers and they’re getting fed a diet of lies essentially.”

CNN Is An Echo Chamber

That’s rich.

The freedoms enshrined in our Bill of Rights are not threats to democracy.

The freedom of speech. Freedom of the press. Freedom of association. None of these are threats to democracy. 

It’s the exact opposite. Suppression of these freedoms is a threat to democracy. 

And really, is there a bigger echo chamber than CNN?

For years, Americans were constantly bombarded with “new” or “breaking” “information” that all supposedly pointed to Donald Trump allegedly colluding with Russia to throw the 2016 presidential election his way.

Then the Mueller report ended up as a huge nothingburger. Did the media ever apologize for it?

Impeachment was not an issue in this election. If Joe Biden even said it once, most missed it.

RELATED: What The Media’s Not Talking About: Republican Election Victory That Will Affect The Next 10 Years

Fake News Is A Threat To Democracy

But fake claims about collusion is what animated the Democratic Party for most of Trump’s presidency.

When an entire major political party defines itself by a fantasy of their own making, that’s a bubble.

And save for (sometimes) Fox News and alternative news outlets, the mainstream media protected that bubble.

We all live in our own bubbles to some extent. CNN tries to present its bubble as truth.

Some might call that a threat to democracy.

The post CNN: Conservatives Leaving Facebook And Twitter For Parler Is A ‘Threat To Democracy’ appeared first on The Political Insider.

Hundreds of thousands joined group aiming to overturn election results before Facebook cracked down

Facebook apparently took down a “Stop the Steal” group accusing Democrats of trying to “nullify Republican votes” and steal the election—but not until the group had gotten hundreds of thousands of members, directing them to an outside page to maintain strength when Facebook did shut it down.

What’s more, the takedown didn’t come until after there were multiple thinly veiled calls to violence and after Mother Jones reported the group’s ties to Republican operatives, making it look a whole lot like an astroturf operation.

That outside website that “Stop the Steal” used Facebook to funnel people to was registered by a conservative digital consulting firm, Liberty Lab. Stop the Steal’s website and Facebook page also suggest links to the group “Women for America First,” which is led by the former chief executive of the Tea Party Express. Women for America First was started to protest Trump’s impeachment.

Facebook’s policy on post-election claims would seem to bar Stop the Steal on multiple grounds, and apparently the company did conclude that it couldn’t host that. Just not until the group had hundreds of thousands of members. In moments like these, it’s always worth remembering that Joel Kaplan, Facebook's vice president of global public policy, was a key participant in the 2000 Brooks Brothers riot.

As we near November’s election, Facebook, Instagram to let users turn off political ads in the U.S.

Facebook and Instagram will allow users in the United States to turn off political ads paid for by a politician or political entity, like a political action committee (PAC), as reported by CNN. The ads may be about political and social issues and display a “paid for by” tag. The onus is then on the users to block ads they don’t want to see. The bigger matter, of course, is that Facebook continues to stick by its allowance of misinformation from politicians in paid ads on its platform.

Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg shared the news in an op-ed published on Tuesday. "For those of you who've already made up your minds and just want the election to be over, we hear you,” he wrote. But when it comes to transparency, accountability, and making sure users get a fair shot at receiving accurate information, being heard remains to be seen.

Twitter recently began using labels to fact-check tweets. Of course some of Trump’s tweets were flagged, including as “glorifying violence.” And on that subject, Zuckerberg argued that Facebook shouldn’t be the “arbiter of truth” for what people say online. If anything reinforces that sentiment, it’s probably the incident from last October in which Facebook refused to pull a Trump ad filled with lies about Joe Biden and Ukraine, even though the information was blatantly false. In terms of Trump posts, he spread misinformation about voting by mail on the platform in early June. 

You might remember last October, for example, when Sen. Elizabeth Warren played by Facebook’s rules and bought a Facebook ad claiming that Zuckerberg endorsed Trump for president. This move hit especially heavily as we know that the Trump campaign historically spends a load of money on Facebook advertising. Overall, Warren wanted more accountability and transparency and used this loophole in Facebook’s regulations to make her point.

You also may remember that in February, when then-presidential hopeful Mike Bloomberg was still in the race, the Bloomberg campaign “contracted” influencers to post wry memes about the Democrat to Instagram. These sorts of posts used to be banned from Facebook and Instagram as a rule, but the platform changed its policy to allow “branded content” from politicians as long as it’s explicitly marked as such. Posts will appear with the tag “Paid Partnership with” as a disclosure. 

Former vice president and presumptive Democratic nominee for president Joe Biden launched a campaign asking Facebook to implement a two-week period prior to the election in which all political ads could be fact-checked before appearing on the site. The campaign also asks Facebook to add rules that ban lies about voting.

As a response to Biden’s open letter, Facebook wrote that it would “protect political speech, even when we strongly disagree with it.”

Mike Pence Says ‘We’re Just Not Going To Tolerate’ Censoring Conservatives On Social Media

Breitbart News reported Monday that Vice President Mike Pence told the outlet that the Trump administration is “not going to tolerate” big tech companies that try to silence conservatives on social media, particularly during the 2020 election.

Pence: ‘We’re just not going to tolerate’ censoring conservatives

Pence said that when it comes to Google, Facebook, Twitter and other major internet platforms,  President Donald Trump has “made it very clear” this censorship of Republican-favorable views won’t be unacceptable.

“Well, the president has made it very clear that we are not going to tolerate censorship on the Internet and social media against conservatives,” Pence told Breitbart News during an interview on SiriusXM.

RELATED: Cop Faces Termination For Upholding U.S. Constitution Against Infringement


President Trump Considering a Review Panel

Over the weekend, the Wall Street Journal reported that Trump was thinking of forming a panel to review bias against conservatives by big tech.

“President Trump is considering establishing a panel to review complaints of anticonservative bias on social media, according to people familiar with the matter, in a move that would likely draw pushback from technology companies and others,” the Wall Street Journal reported. “The plans are still under discussion but could include the establishment of a White House-created commission that would examine allegations of online bias and censorship, these people said.”

Outspoken Hollywood conservative James Woods was suspended by Twitter earlier this month.

Pence Praises Conservative Media

Pence told Breitbart News that conservatives weighing in will be crucial to informing the public with  accurate information during the election.

“The great news is there are—in addition to Breitbart—there are great and consistent voices bringing the facts to the American people,” Pence said. “While many in the mainstream media have been after this president, after this administration, since before our inauguration, it’s been that chorus of voices on the Internet that have brought forth the truth and the facts to the American people.”


The Vice President continued, “Whether it be the whole Mueller investigation or the Russia hoax or whether it be the impeachment that was brought forward and rejected by the Senate, it’s been those voices that’s made a difference for America, and we have every confidence going forward that we’re going to make sure the First Amendment rights of people who cherish freedom and cherish what this president has been able to do for this country are preserved, and I have every confidence that with that great army of conservative thinkers on the Internet we’re going to drive toward a great victory come November.”

RELATED: Michael Moore Trashes Joe Biden: He Lacks ‘Necessary Enthusiasm’ To Beat President Trump

Pence later said, “Look, I couldn’t be more proud to be vice president to President Donald Trump. In our first three years, this is a president who rebuilt our military, who appointed more principled conservatives to our courts than any president in history. This is a president who revived the American economy after the slowest post-cession recovery in history under the Obama administration. Millions of jobs created through tax cuts, regulatory relief, unleashing American energy, free and fair trade.”

“And this is a president who has led our nation through one of the greatest challenges in the last century that has saved lives,” Pence said, referring to Trump’s response to the coronavirus crisis.

The post Mike Pence Says ‘We’re Just Not Going To Tolerate’ Censoring Conservatives On Social Media appeared first on The Political Insider.

Oklahoma Cop Charged With Murder After Killing Active Shooter Who Was Shooting Up The Town

By Steve Pomper | February 6, 2020

At this moment, there is a decorated police officer in Blackwell, Oklahoma who, despite wide and passionate support, is likely feeling pretty damned alone right now. His wife and children, other family members, friends, colleagues, and supporters can commiserate and sympathize, but when you’re the one indicted for murder—for doing your job—no one feels it like you do. Your hell is a special one.

And this hell is made even worse because of the unique circumstances. This hero police officer was indicted after he’d protected his community by risking his life to stop an active shooter before she could kill anyone.

On May 20th, 2019, an armed 34-year-old woman, Michael Ann Godsey (pronounced Michelle), drove her pickup truck through Blackwell, firing a gun out the window at cars, people, and cops. And this was after she’d already shot at her mother.

Blackwell Police Department Lieutenant John Mitchell set his wellbeing aside and ended the danger that threatened the people he is sworn to protect, and he did it in a uniquely heroic way. While driving, he managed to deploy his rifle and fire through his patrol car’s windshield at the active shooter’s car, thereby stopping the rampage.

RELATED: CNN Ratings Continue to Struggle, Fox News Gets a Huge Boost From Impeachment Trial

By all accounts, from people who know him, Lt. Mitchell is a well-respected professional law enforcement officer and devoted family man who is both dedicated to his job and active in the Blackwell community. But with motives that defy rationality, a district attorney named Jason Hicks has, for mysterious reasons, after a seven-month delay and after having been cleared by an independent investigation, targeted the lieutenant.

During the incident, Lt. Mitchell fired some 60 rounds from his rifle attempting to stop the shooter. He also fired shots with his pistol before the suspect was no longer a threat. The D.A. did not indict another officer who’d only fired his service handgun.

It seems Hicks is hung up on the number of rounds Lt. Mitchell fired. Well, as I wrote in my first article on this story, “It was the number necessary to stop the shooter.” Is firing that many rounds a danger to the community? Sure. Firing one round at a suspect is dangerous. But who made so many rounds necessary? The suspect did by not surrendering and continuing to be a threat.

Should Lt. Mitchell have imposed on himself a bullet quota? How about 7, 13, or 23 bullets? But it didn’t take 7, 13, or 23 rounds to stop the threat; it took over 60. That’s how it went, and no one was killed or even seriously injured. Would people have been killed or wounded if Lt. Mitchell had stopped firing at 7, 13, or some other arbitrary number of rounds and allowed the suspect to continue driving and shooting?

I’d ask D.A. Hicks: aside from disengaging the suspect, what other options did Lt. Mitchell have? Maybe Hicks feels the officer should have, oh, I don’t know, rammed the suspect. But doesn’t that mean the officer would have had to get even closer to a suspect who is shooting at him? No tactical advantage in doing that.

Are there other ways this could have ended without innocent deaths or injuries? Probably. In a unique incident like this, individual officers will come up with different (not necessarily better or worse) tactics to stop the threat. But, for all of them, the mission will be the same: stop the threat.

Disengaging from an active shooter is not a viable option. That’s not what “active shooter” training teaches cops. In backing off, you’re betting that the suspect will deescalate if the you stop pursuing him or her. But remember what the Blackwell cops were chasing her for? She was already shooting! Bot her gun and her car were weapons. Lt. Mitchell did the only thing that was going to “deescalate” the situation: shoot back.

Consider how difficult it is for an officer to stop a shooter who is mobile and shooting at him or her. How can one get so bogged down with the number of rounds fired in such an unusual circumstance? How does Lt. Mitchell not deserve the benefit of the doubt? We can’t list the names of the victims who would have, without the cop’s actions, been injured or killed, to justify Lt. Mitchell’s actions. We can’t because, thanks to that brave officer, there were no victims injured or killed.

It’s not like Lt. Mitchell had a mental Rolodex of similar incidents to scroll through. Officers in these life and death situations have to make it up as they go along using their best judgement over the course of multiple split-second decisions. Considering the dynamic, life-threatening circumstances of this incident, the lack of the benefit of the doubt given to this officer by D.A. Hicks is confounding.

But, rather than D.A. Hicks hailing Lt. Mitchell for his heroics, after a bizarre, inexplicable seven-month delay, and well after the cop had been cleared following an investigation by the Oklahoma State Bureau of Investigation (OSBI), D.A. Hicks, reportedly using only evidence heavily weighted against Lt. Mitchell, got a grand jury to indict the veteran lawman, charging him with second degree murder.

And how is Lt. Mitchell to move forward from here after the charges are dropped or he is acquitted (as should happen)? Will he second-guess and hesitate if he’s involved in a similar situation? It would be unnatural not to under these circumstances.

In police work, hesitation can mean injury and death. And this is just a part of the damage D.A. Hicks has done to this community. Other cops in his jurisdiction will have to watch their backs too… not for criminals but for this county D.A.

Several years ago, I was a witness officer in a case where an officer, the victim of an assault at a stolen car collision scene, was charged federally for violating the suspects’ civil rights. I wrote about the incident in my book, De-Policing America. That officer did nothing wrong. In fact, the suspects had resisted arrest and assaulted him and other officers.

Long story short, they should have been charged with felonies for assaulting police officers, but they were only charged for misdemeanor assault in municipal court. A jury acquitted them, later saying they felt the defendants had “suffered enough” because one of them had been pepper-sprayed during the melee.

This acquittal encouraged their lawyers to pursue the federal charge mentioned above. That officer is probably the toughest cop I ever knew. During the course of the lengthy trial, he lost at least 20 pounds he couldn’t afford to lose, had trouble sleeping, and he was never again the proactive cop he’d always been. And this wasn’t a murder charge.

Now, people who say cops shouldn’t worry if they’ve done nothing wrong have their heads up their… umm, in the sand, these days. No less than the Obama/Holder DOJ found that Ferguson police officer Darren Wilson did nothing wrong during the Michael Brown incident. Yet, Wilson will likely never work as a police officer again. And that’s without being charged with any crime.

Ironically, during this legal hell, his community and professional associations have honored Lt. John Mitchell for his service as a police officer. In July 2019, he received a prestigious award for his work in rural drug enforcement. Most recently, in January 2020, John was selected by the readers of the Blackwell Journal-Tribune as the 2019 Best Law Enforcement Officer.

The important thing is for as many people as possible learn about what a county D.A. is doing to this stellar public servant. And then, hopefully, those people will let John know how they feel about his service and let him know they support him (information about how you can do that is provided at the end of this article).

John is supported not only by his community but also by the Oklahoma Fraternal Order of Police (OFOP), and by cops and civilians all over America. Under what must be the intense pressure of commonsense niggling at Hick’s conscience, the man continues this mockery of the American justice system and his attack on all law enforcers.

It isn’t known exactly what evidence Hicks included or omitted for the grand jury or how many mistakes were made, but consider this. One mistake was issuing a flawed subpoena intended for the Blackwell Police Chief Dewayne Wood. Instead, the subpoena went to a (likely bewildered) Duane Wood, who, dutifully, appeared before the grand jury instead.

The other thing to consider is after what you’ve read about the incident in just these brief descriptions, you’ve likely concluded what other lucid people have. That John acted bravely under the most harrowing of circumstances and prevented injuries and deaths.

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Now, just think about what evidence the D.A. had to exclude for the grand jury to arrive at the conclusion that “Mitchell’s actions were ‘imminently dangerous’ and were ‘without justifiable cause or excuse.” Especially, that last one. Sorry, shooting at someone who is shooting at you and other people seems a justifiable cause or excuse to put all the rounds on your target that you can until the target stops shooting.

As Jason Smith, president of the OFOP noted, “A grand jury indicted a Blackwell police lieutenant for murder for killing an active shooter, and the state’s police union is questioning why the district attorney held back evidence from the indictment.” He added, “I’ve yet to see in American history when an active shooter was taken out by a police officer or civilian who was then charged with murder—murder isn’t defined by that in America.”

There’s a more to this story, but it’s my intention just to keep his plight in the minds of John’s growing list of supporters, and to inform people who haven’t heard about this sham, as the preliminary hearing approaches. The hearing will be held at the Noble County Courthouse, Perry, Oklahoma on Feb. 18th, 2020.

If you’re interested in other aspects of the case, which are as curious as they are fascinating, I wrote a more in depth article last December and a brief follow up in January about John’s ordeal.

One bright note is the outpouring of affection and support for John from across the nation. Thousands of people have joined a Facebook page established to support John. Anyone interested in showing their support can go to the Facebook page: We Stand By John Mitchell. There you can post notes of encouragement for John and his family. You can also purchase t-shirts and stickers to demonstrate your support.

This piece originally appeared in LifeZette and is used by permission.

Read more at LifeZette:
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