In a report today on Sen. Barack Obama's appearance this week at the Veterans of Foreign Wars convention in Kansas City, New York Times reporter Jeff Zeleney took a decidedly wrong turn in referring to one statement.The NYT's mischaracterization of Obama's statement is important because the right-wing media will jump all over it.
Zeleney wrote that Obama "said it was wrong for anti-war activists to protest at military funerals, declaring: ‘It needs to stop'."
The quote at the end was accurate but nowhere did Obama refer to the protesters as "anti-war activists." In fact, the protesters who have caused much outrage have been anti-gay activists.
Obama's exact quote, from a transcript at his campaign Web site, reads: "And our sacred trust does not end when a service-member dies. The graves of our veterans are hallowed ground. When men and women who die in service to this country are laid to rest, there must be no protests near the funerals. It’s wrong and it needs to stop."
Maybe not today, but very soon, the braying asses on talk radio and Fox News will start talking about how "Even Barack Obama is trying to distance himself from the anti-war left." They will then quote or refer to the Times misquote and use it to, once again, portray anti-war activists as hateful and anti-troops.
"Obama is beginning to understand that the anti-war left has gone way too far in their irrational hatred of our men and women in uniform."
Bank on it.