NPR’s Driesbach and Mak Lie about Capitol Protest Violence
- NPR blames Trump supporters for a pipe bomb the day before the January 6 protest when there’s no evidence to connect the two
- NPR blames death of Officer Sicknick to pro-Trump protesters, which was later thoroughly debunked
- NPR blames other deaths from natural causes on pro-Trump protesters with no evidence
OUR RATING: Trash Journalism, aka the Daily Beast.
In the first five sentences of this article, in a mere three paragraphs, two NPR reporters manage to write out at least five major lies. It’s a pretty remarkable feat, even for National Public Radio.
The lies told about the January 6th Capitol protest have resulted in horrible conditions of imprisonment and human rights abuses for dozens of participants, so the real-world consequence for these lies are very real and used to keep people imprisoned and oppressed. 
- Lying Headline
- Bad Sources
- No Evidence to Support
- Creating False Connections
- Guilty Grouping
In the article, NPR spins these separate and discrete lies in just three paragraphs:
- That “Rioters” were all “Armed”
- The pipe bombs placed a day prior are from the same group as the Capitol Protest
- That weapons caused the chaos and violence at the protest
- The pro-Trump protesters killed Officer Brian Sicknick with an ‘unknown chemical substance’
- Four other people died in the crowd as a result of the ‘violence’
Here’s how NPR crams in that many lies:
In the wake of the Jan. 6 insurrection at the U.S. Capitol, a popular narrative has emerged: that because rioters did not fire guns that day, they were not really “armed.”
But a review of the federal charges against the alleged rioters shows that they did come armed, and with a variety of weapons: stun guns, pepper spray, baseball bats and flagpoles wielded as clubs. An additional suspect also allegedly planted pipe bombs by the headquarters of the Democratic and Republican parties the night before the riot and remains at large.
Those weapons brought violence and chaos to the Capitol. Capitol Police officer Brian Sicknick died one day after two rioters allegedly sprayed him and other officers with what prosecutors describe as an “unknown chemical substance.” Four other people in the crowd died in the insurrection, and more than 100 police officers suffered injuries, including cracked ribs, gouged eyes and shattered spinal disks.
Let’s dissect these lies one-by-one:
1. That “Rioters” were all “Armed”
The word choice by NPR of ‘riot’ is a way of smearing the entire crowd. It’s a way of saying the entire event was a violent public event.  The pro-Trump protesters weren’t all armed, and this is just a statement without evidence. The presence of defensive weapons also seems reasonable given the very real violence perpetrated by left-wing Antifa types, posing as counter-protesters at pro-Trump events and almost never prosecuted by left-wing police departments and district attorneys.
A review of charges filed against some protest participants is also not proof of anything, as there is no penalty for prosecutors overzealously overcharging individuals in these cases. Filing charges is supposed to be backed by evidence and testimony, but recent history has shown that not every prosecutor decides to operate that way, and so it’s an assumption without evidence. A prosecutor’s indictment, which is just a written allegation, is not evidence of a crime.
You can see how they seek to broadly apply the weapons allegation to the entire assembled group in their word choice:
…a popular narrative has emerged: that because rioters did not fire guns that day, they were not really “armed.”
Note that they group all rioters together, they make no distinguishing between armed and unarmed protesters, and that they were all armed with something. This is smearing the entire group of pro-Trump protesters.
2. The pipe bombs placed a day prior are related to the Capitol Protest
An additional suspect also allegedly planted pipe bombs by the headquarters of the Democratic and Republican parties the night before the riot and remains at large.
This is a matter of creating false connections since there is absolutely no evidence of who planted these bombs, even six months after the event. The presence of so many bad-faith FBI informants, undercover agents, and instigators also makes one wonder if the protection of these would-be bombers is due to their status as an informant or confidential source since it seems hard to believe that with all the video surveillance and monitoring in Washington that this political bomber could not be identified.
It’s also very possible that this was some sort of event meant to smear protesters. Bombs are a powerful political statement, and rarely does the violence they cause seem to be the real motive in recent years. The motive for modern political bombers seems to often be blaming their perceived political opponents. A Jewish teen was convicted of making over 2,000 bomb threats against Jewish centers, while trying to extort and blame his political opponents.  Clearly there’s a strong incentive to use the power of a political bomb threat to smear and malign political opponents.
The connection in the story of disconnected events is meant to again smear the protest participants, even though there is no evidence whatsoever that they are connected to the protesters. It is a major misrepresentation to say so, and making this connection is a lie to readers.
3. The weapons caused the chaos and violence at the protest
There’s no evidence that the weapons caused the chaos, this is all mere speculation. The incidents and physical back-and-forth with officers look to be the result of understaffed Capitol Police, and also escalation tactics from the police as well, including repeated soft pellet and rubber bullets to otherwise peaceful protesters. It’s notable that the media never mentions the excessive force used against the protesters prior to any entrance by the crowd at the Capitol complex. To say that a weapon caused ‘chaos and violence’ would be to say that a firearm discharge caused a panic. But the FBI has said that there was no weapon discharge, and no weapons were recovered from the protest. So the list of primarily defensive devices does not, by itself, mean much of anything.
The media logic is: a) we say there was violence, b) there were things we call weapons, so c) they were an armed violent mob! But if you can define anything as a ‘weapon’ including a flagpole, then does that mean they were an armed mob?
It also means that every protest is an ‘armed mob’ if they carry a flagpole? Is the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day parade a semi-militant display of weaponry?
4. The protesters killed Brian Sicknick with an ‘unknown chemical substance’
We now know that Brian Sicknick did not die from protesters but rather from a pre-existing medical condition.  Many knew even at the time that the Sicknick death story was bogus.  His family urged caution at the time about using his death for left-wing political purposes, which was completely ignored.
It’s amazing that this misrepresentation has persisted for months, uncritically, from a media that wanted it to be true.  There was no autopsy, no photograph, no on-the-record witness, who ever corroborated the media’s insane Brian Sicknick fantasy. 
Yet just as recent as the Capitol Protest hearings this week, the Sicknick lie was repeated once again by Harry Dunn. 
5. Four other people died in the crowd
This is another left-wing lie: the other fatalities were tied that day, other than Ashli Babbit’s execution, to the protest. The three people who died perished from drug overdoses and natural causes.
The deaths referenced, four civilians,  were:
Ashli Babbitt: who was unarmed and was executed by Capitol Police as she attempted to gain entry to a hallway.
Kevin Greeson: who died of natural causes
Benjamin Phillips: who died of natural causes
Roseanne Boyland: who died of a drug overdose
Again, to recap how they lied about this, here’s how NPR wrote about these deaths:
Four other people in the crowd died in the insurrection, and more than 100 police officers suffered injuries, including cracked ribs, gouged eyes and shattered spinal disks.
They were leaving no room for doubt: the protest killed these four people. One point of contrast from recent memory was the shooting death of Captain David Dorn during the Black Lives Matter protests in St. Louis.  There, the death of a retired police officer was from random ‘looters’ and the CNN story doesn’t even mention Black Lives Matter. The crime is completely separated from the politics when the perpetrators are perceptively left-wing.
Here, the natural deaths of two people, and the drug overdose of another, are blamed on those people’s political expressions! It’s really the height of media arrogance to blame people for their own deaths, and then try and indict the movement they supported for causing their own deaths.
NPR has told repeated lies about the Trump protest at the Capitol on January 6th. This article is replete with lies and purposeful falsehoods.
OUR RATING: Trash Journalism, aka the Daily Beast.
Join the conversation
We have no tolerance for comments containing violence, racism, profanity, vulgarity, doxing, or discourteous behavior. Thank you for partnering with us to maintain fruitful conversation.