On Wednesday morning Vester Lee Flanagan, who went by Bryce Williams, walked up on Roanoke, Virginia TV station WDBJ reporter Alison Parker and her cameraman Adam Ward as they were doing a live interview with a woman from the local chamber of commerce and shot them in cold blood killing Parker and Ward and wounding the other woman. Flanagan was a former reporter with the station.
By the afternoon Flanagan was dead of a self inflicted gunshot wound after having been confronted by police who had launched a statewide manhunt for the brutal assassin.
Vester Lee Flanagan
During the manhunt Flanagan faxed a lengthy manifesto to ABC news claiming that he murdered his two former co-workers in a fit of racist anger steaming from the Charleston, South Carolina church shooting. In the manifesto Flanagan shows a kinship and affinity towards the Columbine and Virginia Tech school shooters. Flanagan railed about an apparent parnoid perception that everyone else around him was racist towards him because he was black and gay.
Within hours of the shooting Flanagan posted briefly on social media a video taken by him as he walked up on Parker and Ward and shows him taking aim at Parker and firing the first shots at her.
All day it has been infuriating to see blogs, news sites, and more big and small tripping over themselves to show that video.
It is a snuff film.
And the glee, the urgency so many have shown, to air every bit of that video, again taken by the killer, is revolting.
When 89 WLS’ Jonathon Brandmeier, who for some unknown reason has his crappy show syndicated, aired at the end of his show Wednesday that snuff video in its entirety I wanted to throw up.
That is classless, it is tasteless, it is unprofessional and unethical. It is offensive to the families of the victims, it is beneath decent people, and there is no reasoning or justification for that despicable kind of behavior.
I’ve sent the messages to Brandmeier and WLS that he should be fired over this and I encourage others to do the same.
But he wasn’t the only one to do it, the list is long but websites and people you know, and many more you don’t all did the exact same thing. They put out for the world to see, one racist nuts act of homicidal rage, and they were ecstatic, happy, glad, more than willing to oblige in doing something that should have made them recoil in horror at the mere notion of, and that is showing that bastards snuff video.
Every last one of you who have done so needs to be ashamed of yourselves. You should know better than to have done something so patently and obviously wrong.
One still frame from the video, is all that should have ever seen the publics eye from that video.
Those of you on the blogosphere, on radio like Brandmeier, on TV, on the web, air port radar, wherever, start repenting.