The Self-Immolation of the Fourth Estate Continues as the National Press Club Awards Ben Collins

Townhall Media

NBC News punchline Ben Collins was given a Cronkite Award this weekend for his “honesty” and reporting, a true sign journalism is dying.

If you ever want to see the sad state of journalism in the country these days you need only to look over the spate of journalism awards handed out and the recipients of these honors. There is consistency and uniformity in the process as anyone even close to the center — to say nothing of a crossover to conservative coverage — is rarely if ever honored. But this weekend, we saw something that cemented the sad state of this industry.

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On Saturday, the National Press Club handed out its Walter Cronkite Awards for Excellence in Television Political Journalism. The running theme throughout the proceedings was the battle against disinformation, with advance copy from the ceremony declaring they would honor some of the best journalists on TV who are imperturbably digging for truth, combating deception and defending democracy. 

It is with this theme in mind that one particular honoree is a curious selection. Or a puzzling selection. Or, most accurately, an utterly hilarious and completely invalidating selection. Amid the assembly line of journalists who took the podium was Ben Collins of NBC News, and this was all that was needed to see what a sheer farce this ceremony has become. Honoring Collins for any recognition in the business is questionable, but to hold up this serial fabulist as anything resembling a shining example of truth-based journalism is undiluted comedy.

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Where to begin? Well, one of the prevailing reasons that Collins was cited exposes both him, as well as the vacancy of the journalism standards of this group. Specifically mentioned was his work surrounding the shooting that took place in Colorado Springs.

Judges praised the NBC News senior reporter’s “brilliant, brave work.” “It’s inspiring to watch Collins” cover stories like the racist manifesto of the Buffalo shooter or the anti-trans campaigns in the lead-up to the Club Q shooting, “bearing witness to the extremism on the dark web” and “holding it accountable.” 

Collins spent quite a bit of energy explaining how the Q-Club shooter had to have been the result of anti-LGBT𝜋 sentiment (something the Cronkite board highlighted). He laid out a number of examples as “proof” of his theory that right-wing media was responsible, and was all over the news explaining his position. Then it was all blown apart when it was discovered the shooter was declared to be non-binary. Even dismissing it as a gambit to evade punishment was washed out when it was learned this was declared years earlier.

Ben Collins shifted his stance on a dime with this revelation.

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How the NPC still alludes to this event in this way is more amazing, as these journalists know the facts of this story months after the event. Yet they still cling to an original narrative. What you have to absorb is that Collins spent days blaming conservatives for the shooting, then, the moment he learned the shooter’s self-identification, his stance was wholly renovated, and then he dropped the story entirely.

And this was not an isolated example. He did the same thing with Bobby Crimo, the Highland Park shooter. Collins insisted Crimo was a Trump supporter who became radicalized by the online MAGA hordes and conservative media. Yet he made all these claims absent anything approaching solid evidence.

Of course, it was later revealed that the shooter was an anti-Trump leftist who described himself as a communist. Any shots of him in Trump attire were done in a mocking fashion, and he even attended a Trump rally dressed as Waldo, a supposedly cutting insult of the former President. Why is Ben not blaming Jimmy Kimmel for the shooting, as he was the one to push that line of thought out onto the public?!

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These are deeply disqualifying episodes that should lead to Collins not even being considered for praise, but they are hardly isolated instances. NBC’s professional prevaricator had a number of other cases of him displaying an aversion to the facts and the truth, the very thing the NPC is supposed to be celebrating. For instance, Collins: 

  • Called the Libs of TikTok “anti-LGBT” for merely retweeting already tweeted posts.
  • Claimed that Elon Musk Taking over Twitter would endanger the election and our democracy.
  • Stated that Elon Musk was apathetic towards curbing voices and it could lead to post-election violence. (None occurred, of course.)
  • Steadfastly refused to look into revelations from the Twitter Files, while draping himself as an online guru concerning misinformation.

But there is one other glaring example of how ridiculous it is for this cabal of journalists to award Ben Collins for excellence in his reporting. The man’s hysterical wrongness in his reporting was what led to him being suspended by his own network! Just before Christmas, NBC News placed Collins on leave following his unhinged coverage of Elon Musk being injected with too much personal animus. 

But today, he is heralded by his peers over his supreme quality, high-grade adherence to the truth and journalism ethics. Just…ignore his track record of being wrong and refusing to correct the record when it transpires. 

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