Third Party & Independents Archives

What Couric and Soechtig Didn't Want You to See

It’s all narrative, right? It’s all a construction, according to the progressive view. The news, our views of right and wrong, gender, and as well, a documentary dealing with gun ownership. So there’s absolutely no need for Katie Couric, literally the narrator, and Stephanie Soechtig, the director (maybe she should be called the site manager), to apologize for a brazen manipulation of an interview they did with the Virginia Citizens Defense League. Especially the question on background checks for gun owners.

What is a long, uncomfortable pause in the documentary after Couric asks the question about background checks that might catch terrorists and felons, was in fact a lively debate. How do we know this? The Virginia Citizens Defence League took care of their positions by keeping a raw audio of the interview.

There is no pause in that raw audio. And the debate that follows raises fascinating points: the issue of the right to bear arms and the presumption of innocence. But especially interesting was an argument put forth by one of the VCDL's members on prior restraint. At what point does locking down society in a welter of regulations and restraints - in order to prevent possible future crimes from occuring - become an infringment of the rights of that society's citizens?

There is no correct answer to that last question. Each democratic society may have a different shade of answer and vote in representatives to pass laws that hopefully reflect a consensus on the rights and duties of their citizens.

That's not the issue. It's not that one should necessarily agree with the VCDL's arguments. It's that when they make those arguments in response to a question, a documentary has a responsibility to document that response. And not blatantly manipulate the footage to make them look absolutely unable to answer the question.

But Stepahnie Soechtig wanted "to provide a pause for the viewer to have a moment to consider this important question ..." Not to ridicule people with opposing views. Of course not.

But it's more than that. They must have realized, editing the raw footage, that the members of VCDL held forth admirably on the subject, and a viewer of a more faithfully edited version of that interview, might have come away with a different perspective on the question of background checks. They might just have been persuaded, or nudged a little, by the VCDL's arguments.

In other words, the Viriginia Citizens Defence League threw a monkey wrench into Couric and Soechtig's narrative. By using argument and reason. And so Couric and Soechtig dealt with it in true progressive fashion. They made them shut up. They silenced them and flaunted that silence triumphantly.

The footage that they used for this purpose was most likely obtained when the documentary crew was getting the lighting right: that moment where they ask you to sit still while they play with the camera to get things in focus and looking reasonable. And they used that silence in a deceitful context. A perfectly nasty little rhetorical edit. But it's their narrative that matters. So do not expect a real apology from either the narrator or the director.

Posted by AllardK at May 28, 2016 6:22 PM
Comment #404973

Not only is controlling the narrative and silencing facts standard operating procedure for progressives, so is deflection and shifting blame.

Posted by: kctim at June 1, 2016 10:58 AM
Comment #405022

I won’t defend what Soechtig & Couric did. However, I will definitely dispute that this is an attribute unique to the Left. Instead, the use of cuts and filler to control a narrative is universal in all propagandist’s toolboxes.

Soechtig & Couric got in hot water with the right-wing press over a single abusive editing decision. On the other hand, videos released by CMP guilty of far worse were embraced as gospel truth by the same media as well as numerous Republican Presidential candidates. In contrast, I do not think we’ll be seeing HRC or any other prominent candidates citing this particular scene from Under the Gun in any defense of gun control.

Posted by: Warren Porter at June 1, 2016 5:43 PM
Comment #405057

I’m happy to see you admit it’s propaganda, Warren Porter!

Posted by: Weary Willie at June 2, 2016 2:41 PM
Post a comment