As we reported earlier, the media-driven narrative over the fake “border patrol agents on horseback seen whipping Haitian migrants” story has completely collapsed, with the latest example coming from the New York Times who over the weekend quietly issued a correction to one of their stories on the issue, noting they had “not seen conclusive evidence that migrants were struck with the reins.”
But in a rather revealing admission during today’s White House press briefing, press secretary Jen Psaki all but literally confirmed facts don’t matter when asked whether or not new information on the story has changed the Biden administration’s mind regarding their prior statements basically accusing Customs and Border Protection agents of being no better than slave owners.
Here’s how the exchange between the reporter who asked the question and Psaki went down:
Reporter: “And then you touched on this, but I’m wondering, you know, the El Paso Times has walked back their claim that border agents were using whips to deter Haitian migrants. This is kind of a controversy; some people are weighing what is a whip versus what is a rein. And the El Paso Times put out a clarification saying, ‘It was not an actual whip.’ Does that change anything for the administration, in light of the statements that were made last week?”
Psaki: “I don’t think anyone could look at those photos and think that was appropriate action or behavior or something that should be accepted within our administration. There’s an investigation. That’s ongoing. We’ll let that play out. But our reaction to the photos has not changed.”
.@PressSec says that the distinction between whipping immigrants and using horse reins does not change the circumstances regarding the investigation and disciplining of border patrol agents.
“Our reaction to the photos has not changed.” pic.twitter.com/a6eAHF7N24
— Townhall.com (@townhallcom) September 27, 2021
Not only is this insane, but it’s also extremely dangerous.
Psaki – and via extension, this administration – is trying to have it both ways here. On one hand, they are trying to virtue signal to the wokesters to who they are beholden by saying what was seen in the photos was in no way acceptable, but immediately after she says an investigation is “ongoing,” as though that means the CBP agents at the center of this controversy are getting a fair shake as this all plays out.
It’s nonsense. And, again, dangerous.
If these border agents “will pay” according to what President Biden said last week, and if they are no better than plantation overseers, as other Democrats suggested or insinuated including Vice President Kamala Harris, then why is an investigation even needed? They’ve drawn their own conclusions and have declared the CBP agents guilty even as new information was coming in that contradicted media narratives on this nontroversy.
Since the White House isn’t interested in talking about the updated developments in this story, let me list off some of the highlights:
The photographs, which were taken Sunday, appear to show agents on horses with a whip in hand. The photos caused outrage because from certain angles, it appears to show Border Patrol whipping migrants, but photographer Paul Ratje said he and his colleagues never saw agents whipping anyone.
“Some of the Haitian men started running, trying to go around the horses,” Ratje said.
“I’ve never seen them whip anyone,” Ratje said. “He was swinging it, but it can be misconstrued when you’re looking at the picture.”
There was also this alternative clip released Friday, which showed no whipping taking place at the moment the controversial photos were taken. At the beginning, we see one agent doing the “twirling” thing the CBP agents sometimes do with his horse reins in close proximity to a migrant and just a few seconds later the same agent grabs a migrant’s shirt to try to get him to move:
Sorting through my footage from the border. I was in the river during the viral incident between a Haitian migrant and mounted CBP agent. It’s shaky – but here’s what I captured. pic.twitter.com/fnvxSU83tO
— Sarah Blake Morgan (@StorytellerSBM) September 24, 2021
We also had the New York Times and Axios corrections, where they admitted they could no longer confirm Haitian migrants were whipped based on updated information. This at the very least confirms that even some in the media now believe conclusions can’t yet be drawn based on all available evidence (even though they can).
Then there are the contrasting images that were taken at roughly the same time:
— ☆ Kelly Fest ☆ (@kellyfest) September 24, 2021
The CBP, too, has gone on record and said they aren’t even authorized to use whips on migrants and don’t carry them. The horse reins, they say, are twirled to get migrants back from the horses so no one gets hurt.
This story was fake news from start to finish and yet both the media and White House ran with it anyway, presumably to distract people from the Biden administration’s utter incompetence in dealing with the border crisis in its totality.
That the Biden White House has just admitted that the updated information will not deter them from continuing their “investigation” into this matter should scare everyone regardless of political affiliation, because the next person they “investigate” over something that didn’t happen could be you.