The New York Times was widely criticized over the weekend for a report that claimed “misinformation” and “conspiracy theories” resulted in voters believing that Black Lives Matter protests caused widespread violence.
In a Times story headlined, “A Vexing Question for Democrats: What Drives Latino Men to Republicans?,” national politics reporter Jennifer Medina noted that many Latino men vote Republican.
Deep into the lengthy story is a paragraph about sometimes-violent Black Lives Matter protests that was noticed by critics.
“Some of the frustrations voiced by Hispanic Republican men are stoked by misinformation, including conspiracy theories claiming that the ‘deep state’ took over during the Trump administration and a belief that Black Lives Matter protests caused widespread violence,” Medina wrote.
Journalist Michal Tracey wrote, “Evidently it’s the lived experience of the NYT that the permanent national security bureaucracy did nothing to undermine Trump, and the Summer 2020 protests caused no ‘widespread violence’ — beliefs to that effect must be the result of ‘misinformation.'”
Tracey continued: “That NYT could include a throwaway paragraph in this article dismissing as “misinformation” perceptions of “widespread violence” caused by the 2020 riots stems from the collective media decision last year to NOT cover those events accurately and thus distort the historical record.”
Others slammed the Times for the odd claim, too:
2020 was plagued by sometimes violent protests stemming from racially charged demonstrations often championed by the Black Lives Matter movement.
Protests and riots ravaged parts of the nation in the days, weeks and months following the May 2020 death of George Floyd in Minneapolis. News of Floyd’s death sent shockwaves throughout the city and prompted demonstrations that, although peaceful by some, grew destructive in some cases.
Fires erupted throughout parts of the city, including at a local Auto Zone, a Japanese restaurant, a Wells Fargo bank and an Office Depot. Looters ransacked an area Target store, among other shops.
At one point, rioters cheered as people set a Minneapolis police precinct headquarters on fire after the department was forced to abandon it. The staff had evacuated the 3rd Precinct station, the focus of many of the protests, “in the interest of the safety of our personnel,” a police spokesperson said at the time.
With tensions already heightened following the Floyd shooting, hundreds, if not thousands of people descended on downtown Chicago in August following a police shooting on the city’s South Side. Vandals smashed the windows of a dozen businesses and made off with merchandise, cash machines and virtually anything else they could carry, police said.
Police Superintendent David Brown told reporters that the shooting of the man who had opened fire on officers apparently prompted a social media post that urged people to form a car caravan and converge on the business and shopping district.
Videos of the vandalism showed huge crowds of people smashing their way into businesses and streaming out of the broken windows and doors with clothes and other merchandise. They loaded up vehicles, some moving slowly and deliberately, apparently not worried about being caught by police or being recorded by scores of cellphone cameras.
Weeks earlier in July, a downtown Chicago protest over a statue of Christopher Columbus devolved into a chaotic scene of police swinging batons and demonstrators hurling frozen water bottles, fireworks and other projectiles at officers.
New York City also saw peaceful protests that grew violent or destructive in the days and nights following Floyd’s death. From the end of May into the beginning of June, businesses boarded up as some people took out their anger on storefronts – or took advantage of the opportunity to loot.
The spurts of smash-and-grab sprees and sporadic unrest led New York City officials to impose a citywide curfew for several days, which led to clashes between protesters and police officers attempting to clear the streets.
More protests erupted in August following the police shooting of Jacob Blake, a Black man shot multiple times in Kenosha while three of his children looked on. The shooting sparked protests over racial injustice in several cities, which devolved into unrest and full-on riots.
Crowds destroyed dozens of buildings and set more than 30 fires in downtown Kenosha. In one instance, a Kenosha car dealership reportedly sustained $1.5 million in damage during one night of riots.
Demonstrators took to the streets of Philadelphia following the October officer-involved shooting of Walter Wallace Jr., an armed Black man reportedly with a mental health history. More than a thousand people took to the streets following the shooting, ransacking big-name stores, such as Walmart and Foot Locker, as well as smaller businesses. Hundreds were arrested, and dozens of police and law enforcement vehicles were damaged during the riots, officials said at the time.
Just last month, a Black Lives Matter march through Midtown Manhattan turned violent Friday night, with 11 protesters arrested. The NYPD reported that two at least officers suffered injuries during the protest, which was attended by about 100 marchers.
Fox News’ Stephanie Pagones contributed to this report.