Yep, Katie Couric's Still A Dishonest Hack

(Photo by Jordan Strauss/Invision/AP, File)

Many Second Amendment supporters remember Katie Couric getting sued by the Virginia Citizens Defense League and several of its members over deceptive editing in her “documentary” Under the Gun. In a roundtable Q & A session, Couric quizzed the Virginia gun owners about background checks, wondering “how do you prevent felons or terrorists from purchasing a gun” without them.

The “documentary” then cut to nine seconds of VCDL members staring at their feet or off into space, apparently unwilling or unable to answer the question. The problem for Couric is that those members actually had plenty to say.

An audiotaped recording taken by one of the participants shows otherwise — they spoke extemporaneously for several minutes.

“That was not a tough question,” Philip Van Cleave, president of the Virginia Citizens’ Defense League, told NPR. He said he observed the interview in person as it occurred. “That was not a question that our members would not know the answer to. It’s kind of like sins of omission.”

While the Fourth Circuit ultimately ruled against the VCDL and its members in their defamation lawsuit, there was no doubt that Couric’s editing falsely portrayed gun owners in a negative light. Frankly, that should have been the end of Couric’s career, but instead the so-called journalist continued her work with Yahoo News until she left on her own accord in 2017.

In an upcoming memoir, Couric reveals another incident of journalistic malpractice she conducted while at Yahoo; this one involving then-Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsberg.

In new memoir, Going There, Couric writes that she edited out a part where Ginsburg said that those who kneel during the national anthem are showing ‘contempt for a government that has made it possible for their parents and grandparents to live a decent life.’

The published story, which Couric wrote for Yahoo! News in 2016, did include quotes from Ginsburg saying refusing to stand for the anthem was ‘dumb and disrespectful’, but omitted more problematic remarks.

In her new memoir, Katie Couric admits to editing out Ruth Bader Ginsburg’s controversial comments from their 2016 interview (pictured) to ‘protect’ the late Supreme Court Justice

But Couric writes in her memoir that she thought the justice, who was 83 at the time, was ‘elderly and probably didn’t fully understand the question.’

But she faced a ‘conundrum’ when Ginsburg made comments about Colin Kaepernick, the former NFL player who became the controversial figurehead behind the national anthem protest against racial injustice.

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.

According to Couric, she ‘wanted to protect’ Ginsburg and felt that the issue of racial justice was a ‘blind spot’ for her. They are pictured together in an earlier interview for Yahoo! News in 2014

But what was left out was arguably more inflammatory.

Ginsburg went on to say that such protests show a ‘contempt for a government that has made it possible for their parents and grandparents to live a decent life.’

She said: ‘Which they probably could not have lived in the places they came from…as they became older they realize that this was youthful folly. And that’s why education is important.’

Couric claims that that she still “wrestles” with the decision she made to “protect” Ginsburg from her own opinion, but this really isn’t a difficult ethical quandry. Couric presents herself as a journalist, when in actuality she’s just a partisan hack with a platform.

Journalists report what people say. Couric, on the other hand, takes away the words of her interview subjects when it suits her agenda. In the case of Ruth Bader Ginsburg, it was to make her look better and spare her grief from her progressive fan base. In the case of the members of the Virginia Citizens Defense League, it was to make them look worse and to cause them grief from both gun owners and gun control activists alike.

Will Couric suffer any reputational damage after admitting to covering up what Ginsburg had to say? Maybe among consumers of news, but not from her colleagues in the media. She should face a grilling from her fellow interviewers when she hits the talk show circuit to promote her new memoir, but we all know she’ll be lobbed softball questions instead. If the news media was truly about reporting information, Couric would be a pariah in the industry. Instead, she’s a star, which tells you everything you need to know about how little most mainstream media outlets are invested in honest and fair reporting.