Palestinian-American activist Bassem Masri confronted CNN host Michael Smerconish about his recent arrest for spitting on a police officer in Ferguson, Mo.
Masri denied spitting, saying he only made a spitting sound, as is common in Arab custom. The activist said he believes the case will be thrown out of court based on his cultural background.
Smerconish asked Masri if he thinks he’s helping the unrest in Ferguson by confronting police while protesting a police officer’s shooting of unarmed black teenager Michael Brown.
“I don’t think we should be looking at citizens about how they react towards their public servants,” Masri said. “It should be the other way around.”
Smerconish played a video of Brown’s father calling for peace, then pointed out that President Obama and Attorney General Eric Holder also issued a public plea for calm.
“There’s blood on the street, and you’re worried about words,” Masri said. “That’s what journalists are missing right now. Why don’t you go investigate something real?”
Smerconish suggested protesters wait to see what the grand jury does.
“And then, when all of the evidence that was evaluated by the grand jurors get put online and we can review hundreds, thousands of pages of factual evidence, then we catch our breath, evaluate what it says and plan what our next moves will be,” Smerconish said.
The grand jury’s opinion doesn’t seem to matter to Masri, though.
“I don’t care what any of them got to say,” he said. “I know what happened.”
When agitators like Masri have their minds made up, violence seems almost inevitable.
EXTRA – CNN host Erin Burnett asks the dumbest question ever to Daniel Isom, Director of the Missouri Department of Public Safety.
“Is there any situation now, after the indictment, under which officers would use their guns?”
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