The narrative of silence in response to legitimate and obviously credible questions is highly irresponsible and ethically disgusting. Law enforcement initially released a series of inaccurate and highly prejudicial statements immediately following the shooting incident at a Twin Peaks restaurant in Waco on May 17, 2015. The court of public opinion moves quicker than the court of law. Regardless of accuracy, prejudicial statements during the initial phases of national media coverage defined general perception and diverted attention away from law enforcement’s actions during this tragedy. Law enforcement capitalized on the national news media’s focus by sensationalizing the gathering as a gang meeting and even went as far as absurdly claiming that bikers had declared war on law enforcement, green-lighting “anyone in uniform”.
But as this information has been analyzed and refuted, the validity of these statements have come into serious question. Although national focus has waned as the media’s attention has been drawn elsewhere, correcting inaccuracies and prejudicial statements has become more difficult, but no less important. Law enforcement’s silence speaks volumes to a general public already skeptical of an epidemic of law enforcement abuse and criminal activity across the country.
When national media focus was diverted, the strategy changed. Law enforcement transitioned to a narrative of silence, refusing to shed any light on critical questions regarding the incident. This silence only further legitimizes questions and critiques of law enforcement’s actions.
The recently leaked video footage from Don Carlos, a restaurant immediately adjacent to Twin Peaks, is a perfect example of law enforcement’s narrative of silence. The leaked Don Carlos video revealing a small piece of the picture of the tragedy in Waco creates more questions than it answers. These questions demand answers if the criminal justice system in Waco has any hope of restoring any semblance of credibility after what appears to be revelations easily interpreted as corruption. There appears to be a number of elements of the video that range from curious to suspicious, particularly absent any counter-explanation. Law enforcement’s narrative of silence must end…