Sean Bergin’s report, which aired Sunday, featured the widow of a black man accused of shooting a rookie Jersey City police officer to death last week. Responding officers killed the suspect. In response, widow Angelique Campbell told Bergin that her late husband Lawrence Campbell should have killed more officers, though she later apologized.
For all intents and purposes, Campbell’s initial statement is inappropriate and cruel. Taking the lives of others is simply wrong. But that elementary concept aside, understanding why Campbell may have felt that way is worth exploring, if we are to discuss this supposed anti-cop rhetoric.
Something Bergin, who attributed the “anti-police mentality” among young black men to fatherless households, did not consider at all.
“It’s important to shine a light on this anti-cop mentality that has so contaminated America’s inner cities,” Bergin said after airing the widow’s comments and showing a memorial for her husband. “The underlying cause of all of this, of course, young black men growing up without fathers.”
He continued, telling the audience that the issue of fatherless homes was one most news outlets don’t have the courage to report. (Well, that, the number of black individuals killed by police, and the absolute number of those officers who walk free).
His generalized comments, obviously, did not sit well with viewers or News 12.
“It is News 12’s policy that reporters must be objective and not state personal opinions on-air,” the station said in a statement Tuesday.
But Bergin, who said he added his commentary just before going on air, isn’t apologetic.
“If I had it to do over again, I would do the exact same thing,” Bergin said. “I broke the rules. I knew I was breaking the rules. But sometimes you have to break the rules to do the right thing.”
The right thing? We think it’s safe to assume Bergin doesn’t have plans to brush up on the policing of black neighborhoods and the storied past/present between these two communities. You know, if just to get another world view.
We’re also sure he’s not here for numbers on how many fatherless children grow up to be law-abiding, non-violent citizens. Numbers that make his opinion, seen through his experience with positive policing, unfair and irrelevant to the actual issue of absentee fathers in the black community.
You can watch a portion of Bergin’s report above.
SOURCE: AP | VIDEO SOURCE: News 12/YouTube