CNN’s response to this incident:
CNN didn’t edit out the question from Drew Griffin for editorial reasons. Sometimes we edit clips to a certain length because shorter clips tend to do better online. Drew was questioning a CNN correspondent and not a guest. If it were a guest or person who did the study, we would have certainly posted the segment in its entirety. The full segment is now streaming.
This video by RonMattieu is up on YouTube. It’s a TV screencap of a report by Barbara Starr about the survey sent out today by the Pentagon related to implementation of DADT repeal to 200,000 active duty troops and 200,000 reserve troops.
CNN’s Barbara Starr defends polling soldiers if they want to shower with “open” gays. Listen carefully as anchor Drew Griffin challenges her and she becomes quite defensive in justifying the ‘survey’. Truly despicable. The exchange starts around 2:20.
Here is part of the Starr’s report as it appears on the CNN web site, and she repeats almost verbatim in the video.
An administration official confirmed to CNN that the survey is being sent to 200,000 active duty troops and 200,000 reserve troops. The official declined to be identified because the survey has not officially been made public.
The survey, which service members can expect to receive via e-mail, asks about such issues as how unit morale or readiness might be affected if a commander is believed to be gay or lesbian; the need to maintain personal standards of conduct; and how repeal might affect willingness to serve in the military.
The survey also asks a number of questions aimed at identifying problems that could occur when troops live and work in close quarters in overseas war zones. For example, the questionnaire asks military members how they would react if they had to share a room, bathrooms, and open-bay showers in a war zone with other service members believed to be gay or lesbian.
At the end of her report, Drew Griffin seems perturbed at the idea of the whole survey idea, and asks:
Why do they care — these joint chiefs — these guys are paid to make decisions. Why are they sending out this public relations survey asking whoever wants to respond to this and supposedly going to use this to make a decision on this?
Starr is a little taken aback and responds with
“You’re right this is a terrific question because there is a lot of confusion about it because we all know that in the military once the Commander in Chief give an order, salute smartly and carry on. That’s the way life goes in the military, you really don’t get a vote on what orders you want to follow.”
She continues on to talk about the political “delicate nature” of the situation, how the President really wants repeal but well, to paraphrase broadly — they want to make sure these 200,000 active duty troops and 200,000 reserve troops aren’t worried about the soap dropping in the shower.
Now what’s weird is that the video on CNN’s web site (below) obviously edits out that exchange between Griffn and Starr at 2:26 – 4:39 in the above video.
Why? There’s no real reason to do so, as it’s a web clip, so time constraints aren’t relevant. What editorial judgment was made that Griffin’s interest in a logical reason for the survey is not newsworthy to readers of CNN’s web site?