NBC Marks 1 Year Since Waukesha Attack, Omits Racist Motive

News & Politics

On Sunday’s edition of NBC Nightly News, anchor Kate Snow and reporter Maura Barrett marked the first anniversary of the attack on a Christmas parade in Waukesha, Wisconsin when Darrell Brooks Jr. plowed through the marchers with his SUV killing six and injuring many more. While the resilience of the community was inspiring, NBC refused to mention the racist motives behind the attack.

“In Waukesha, Wisconsin, the town just finished marching in its annual Christmas parade,” Snow announced at the top of the segment. “Of course, it was one year ago that a man drove a car into that crowd killing six. Tonight, residents returned celebrating the lives lost and the town`s determination to keep the tradition going.”

“Waukesha`s Christmas parade is back, bigger and stronger than ever. The community turning up in force one year after tragedy struck, when a man drove an SUV through parade killing six people and injuring dozens more,” Barrett added.

In the year since the attack, Brooks had been tried on 76 counts, found guilty on all of them, and was sentenced to six life sentences. And yet, NBC has kept the story of those proceedings out of their morning and evening newscasts until their conclusion on October 26, 2022, and yet they still didn’t mention the fact that Brooks is a staunch racist.

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As a NewsBusters study from 2021 showed, the broadcast network coverage of the attack evaporated after it was revealed that Brooks hated white people and held anti-Semitic views, even posting “Hitler was right” online. ABC, CBS, and NBC all stopped mentioning his name on November 24, 2021.

A large part of what they refused to cover were his repeated calls for violence against white people, compiled by the New York Post:

They included numerous posts attacking cops, comparing them to Ku Klux Klan members and calling them “violent street gangs” — as well as calling for violence toward white people, according to screenshots.

“LEARNED ND TAUGHT BEHAVIOR!!” he wrote on June 9 last year amid the violent upheaval over George Floyd’s murder by a Minnesota cop, according to a screenshot shared by the Daily Mail.

“So when we start bakk knokkin white people TF out ion wanna hear it…the old white ppl 2, KNOKK DEM TF OUT!! PERIOD,” he wrote under his rap name, MathBoi Fly, along with a middle-finger emoji.

“That joy palpable amid today`s record turnout. This year`s theme, Peace on Earth, is felt at every turn,” Barrett concluded her report.

NBC’s omission of the racist motive was made possible because of lucrative sponsorships from Humana and Progressive. Their contact information is linked.

The transcript is below, click “expand” to read:

NBC Nightly News
December 4, 2022
6:39:58 p.m. Eastern

KATE SNOW: In Waukesha, Wisconsin, the town just finished marching in its annual Christmas parade.

Of course, it was one year ago that a man drove a car into that crowd killing six. Tonight, residents returned celebrating the lives lost and the town`s determination to keep the tradition going.

Maura Barrett is there.

[Cuts to video]

MAURA BARRETT: Tonight, Waukesha`s Christmas parade is back, bigger and stronger than ever. The community turning up in force one year after tragedy struck, when a man drove an SUV through parade killing six people and injuring dozens more.

Today, 80 floats line the streets led by six snow flake cutouts in honor of the lives lost. The Dancing Grannies, who lost some of their own, are back too.

What does it mean to you that you`re back here dancing again after being injured?

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: It means that I have lots of angels surrounding me.

BARRETT: First responders serving as the grand marshals, as new additions honor the heroes and the victims, their families forever bonded together.

AARON SPARKS (father): We all support each other and we all have a connection.

BARRETT: Sheri and Aaron Sparks lost their eight-year-old son, Jackson, who was marching in the parade with his brother and baseball team.

SHERI SPARKS (mother): The boys loved Christmas. But then there`s that weight and that — you know, that you`re fighting through.

BARRETT: Do you think the parade coming back will help with that?

S. SPARKS: I think for a lot of people, it`s going to be healing.

BARRETT: They`re not comfortable going back this year but credit the community support for those who do want to attend.

To ensure safety, the city quadrupled police officer presence and altered the parade route from past years, along with an $800,000 investment in new vehicle barriers.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: The most important thing is the community feels safe and that`s something we can`t put a price tag on.

BARRETT: But tonight, the town`s resilience on full display.

A. SPARKS: Remember what a Christmas parade is. It`s bringing everyone together in the joy of Christmas. You know, you kind of think about how terrible it is that, you know, there`s been a stain on that, and it shouldn`t be.

[Cuts back to live]

BARRETT: That joy palpable amid today`s record turnout. This year`s theme, Peace on Earth, is felt at every turn. Kate?

SNOW: All right. Maura, thank you.

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