Tony Samuel: Watching two different countries on cable news
Sunday, March 12, 2017 12:32 PM
INDIANAPOLIS – We really are living in two different countries, if you watch the cable television shows every night. The good thing is most people have better things to do. When I got home Wednesday night, Fox News showed the headline, “FBI on Hunt for CIA Mole after Secrets Are Leaked.” At the same time, CNN’s headline read, “Pence Dodges Questions on Trump’s Wiretapping Claims.” The contrast in stories tells the story right there.
A few minutes later, Fox ran a report of an illegal immigrant who had been deported five times with over 20 arrests since 1990, who was intoxicated and smashed the car in which he was fleeing another accident. He also crashed into the car driven by Sandra Duran, a California woman who was a mother, daughter and sister, killing her instantly. This five-minute story could never paint the true tragedy so many family and friends must now live with forever.
Flip the channel and you would have found CNN covering the “A Day Without a Woman” event, like there is now a national holiday to bash the president. I couldn’t even bring myself to switch over to MSNBC. By the way, when is the “A Day Without Men” and can I pick the theme and events please? I can guarantee you we won’t be marching anywhere except to the best bars with the biggest big screens.
If you’re paying attention to most of the national media’s focus on tearing down the president, and all of the Russian talk amid all of the leaks, and now the bickering over the new health care plan, your mind is pretty boggled and you’re only getting a sliver of real news.
I did, however, catch a couple of interesting stories in the last week that actually made some sense of what we are witnessing. The Indianapolis Star reported on the arrest of an Avon man, “Authorities say Avon man was a drug kingpin.” This was real news. Rafael Rojas-Reyes of Avon was one of the leaders of a ring that shipped drugs through Indiana to several states, according to the U.S. attorney’s office.
Sixteen members of this operation were arrested for delivering drugs to Indianapolis from Mexico and then to Lufkin, Texas; Reading, Pennsylvania; Queens, New York; New Brunswick, New Jersey; Columbus, Ohio; and Omaha, Nebraska; at times traveling with more than $1 million, up to 50 kilograms of cocaine and up to 32 pounds of meth. They acquired the meth and cocaine from Mexico and arranged for it to be smuggled over the border, according to the indictment.
Federal and local law enforcement, including the Indianapolis Metropolitan Police Department, the Carmel Police Department and the Indianapolis Metropolitan Drug Task Force worked together to bust the gang, which also had deadly violent encounters with a rival cartel.
So this was Indiana in the middle of a story of drugs being shipped over the border and distributed to small and big towns alike throughout our country, causing death and ruining lives. This report really hit home. This is the kind of story that doesn’t get the attention it deserves but it is about real life that affects us all – our friends, our neighbors, our children – and it is happening everywhere.
This is why President Trump recently signed executive orders to hire 5,000 additional border agents and 10,000 additional ICE agents, empowered state and local law enforcement to support federal enforcement of immigration law, and ended “catch and release” among other steps to secure our borders and stop the flow of drugs, gangs and violence. We’re hearing so much noise about the illegal immigration debate, but this story made it all make sense because this was in our back yard, straight from the border and with national implications. I for one appreciate that we now have a president who wants to take this issue head on and support law enforcement, and they appreciate that support.
The other story made sense to me because it supported what I’ve been saying and writing. The other morning, I watched a report on Morning Express where they interviewed four guys at a baseball bat factory in Plain City, Ohio, on how President Trump was doing. They all had voted for him. The comments from the first guy were, “He’s making a lot of progress. He’s fulfilling a lot of his campaign promises so I’m encouraged that he’s following through when most politicians don’t.”
The next guy said, “I feel like the Republicans in Congress aren’t real happy because now they have to do something. They’ve got a president from their own party that’s pretty driven to get his agenda and you know, they’ve been making excuses for years that they couldn’t do it and couldn’t do it and I think they’re gonna have to put up now.” They all supported his efforts.
This renewed my faith that most of real America – and how much more real America can you get than guys making baseball bats in a factory in a small town in Ohio – don’t pay attention to the Oscars or the actors or the national media. Most Americans are watching the results and not the commentary. Those results are what matter for the families of victims like Sandra Duran and to Hoosiers and all Americans fighting to stop the scourge of illegal drugs in our communities.
Samuel is president of Samuel Solutions and was vice chairman of the Trump Indiana campaign.