As the controversy over the treatment of Haitian migrants at the border continues to swirl, some voices in the media are refusing to let go of debunked claims. White House correspondent April Ryan has doubled down on allegations that Customs and Border Patrol agents “whipped” migrants with horse reins. When confronted with the fact that a federal investigation had found no evidence of such abuse, Ryan claimed that the photos and videos seen by many Americans had been “fixed” to obscure the truth. This kind of baseless speculation does a disservice to both the truth and to the crucial work done by law enforcement officials securing the border.
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White House correspondent for The Grio, April Ryan, has refused to let go of debunked claims that Customs and Border Patrol agents whipped Haitian migrants at the U.S.-Mexico border. Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas himself informed her that this was not the case, yet Ryan persisted in her claims that something resembling a whip had been used to control the migrants.
This is not the first time that Ryan has been caught pushing a false narrative. When the now-infamous photo first surfaced, she was one of the many who mistook the free rein for a whip and alleged that agents had whipped migrants at the border. Even the photographer who captured the image stated publicly that he had never seen agents whip anyone, but still the narrative persisted and former President Joe Biden publicly criticized the agents — and he even called for a federal investigation into their behavior. That investigation determined that the Border Patrol agents had simply done their jobs and that no one had been whipped.
Despite these facts, Ryan brought up the debunked claims during a Thursday press conference with Secretary Mayorkas. When he corrected her, she refused to accept it, claiming that the footage or images of the alleged whipping may have been somehow “fixed”.
Ryan’s refusal to accept the facts and her insistence on pushing a false narrative is concerning. It is important that reporters adhere to the principles of journalistic integrity and report the facts accurately, instead of pushing their own agendas and spreading misinformation.
In addition, Ryan’s claims that the border crisis affects only Mexicans are blatantly false. Secretary Mayorkas correctly noted that the southern border also affects Haitians and Africans, yet Ryan overlooked that fact in order to push her false narrative of supposed “whippings”.
It is imperative that reporters like Ryan are held accountable for their false claims and are made to report the news with accuracy and integrity. The American people deserve nothing less than accurate and truthful reporting.
In spite of clear evidence to the contrary, Ryan’s insistence on a debunked narrative surrounding the treatment of Haitian migrants at the border is reckless and unwarranted. While an already-tense situation at the southern border demands careful attention and measured responses, Ryan’s insistence on perpetuating a misleading storyline does nothing to advance the conversation. As Americans work to find solutions to the ongoing migration crisis, it’s important to remember that facts and reality should be the basis for any meaningful discussion.
Let’s continue this conversation, in the comments below.