It has been a busy week in North America, with law enforcement arresting and detaining journalists like we are living in occupied Hong Kong.
The reactions to two of these incidents have been starkly different – and I am trying to understand why. This week, I was detained by the RCMP and physically manhandled after reporting in Ottawa. A couple days later, a CNN reporter was arrested in Minneapolis.
Now what I find interesting is the difference in outrage that we are seeing here. When the CNN journalist was arrested it was called “an affront to the First Amendment” – and even Canadian news stations were having emergency wall to wall coverage about it. Tweets, stories, live coverage, it was trending. All of the normal suspects were positively outraged over it.
That is why I found it so strange that just a few days earlier it was nothing but crickets from the liberal mainstream media. In some cases they were laughing and even cheering the abuse on.
The story of the RCMP unreasonably detaining me at a prime ministerial press conference spread like wildfire. Organically. Canadians didn’t need Rosemary Barton to tell them to be mad – they saw the affront to my journalistic and personal freedom and took it personally. It was an affront to their freedoms as well.