Why Doesn’t the Media Care About a Mayor Compiling a List of Enemies for Law Enforcement?

AP Photo/Charles Krupa

Here’s yet another one of those stories that would be national news if the villain was a Republican. In this instance, a local politician compiled a list of critics and handed it over to the police.

There is absolutely no way this could go wrong, right?

Here’s what happened: Boston Mayor Michelle Wu’s office provided the local police with a list of individuals they considered a threat due to their opposition to her policies. The list included anti-vaccine activists, local restaurant owners, and a City Council candidate who had been vocal critics of Wu.

The list was created in response to protesters who gathered outside Mayor Wu’s residence during a parade, harassing her and her family for almost 90 minutes. Wu’s office claimed that the list was compiled at the request of the Boston Police Department, citing concerns for the mayor’s safety:

In yet another case of “It’s (D)different,” a Freedom Of Information Act request has exposed email correspondence where Wu’s office sent local police officials a list of those she deems to be her most dangerous critics and political opponents, supplying this list to the Boston Police Department out of alleged concern for her safety.

This list is said to have sprung out of an incident that played out last month, where a parade had been staged in town, and some participants used the event to station themselves outside of Wu’s residence to protest, making loud calls of outrage against the mayor. As a result, the mayor’s office drew up a list of 15 people that was submitted to the police, including anti-vaccine activists, local restaurant owners, and a candidate for the City Council. What their connection to the parade protest had been is not clear, but all were said to be vocal opponents of Wu’s policies in the recent past.

It is not difficult to see why this is problematic, is it? When a government official, regardless of political affiliation, compiles a list of individuals who oppose their policies and shares it with law enforcement, it should be a matter of great concern. Such an action could lead to politically-motivated government abuse. Yet, in the case of Michelle Wu, this story has been largely ignored by mainstream media outlets. This glaring omission raises questions about media bias and the erosion of public trust in the Fourth Estate.

The most troubling aspect of this story is the deafening symphony of silence from establishment media outlets. Imagine if a Republican mayor had compiled such a list targeting their political opponents and handed it over to the police. It is almost certain that the press would have covered it extensively, with wall-to-wall coverage and calls for investigations. They would run hit pieces referring to the official as authoritarian and probably try to figure out a way to blame it on former President Donald Trump. However, when a Democrat mayor is involved, the media’s response is conspicuously different. And when I say “different,” I mean “as silent as a shy kid in a library.”

This apparent double standard reinforces the perception that media outlets are not objective purveyors of news but rather partisan actors. Americans have grown increasingly skeptical of the Fourth Estate, and incidents like these only exacerbate this erosion of trust. It is essential for media organizations to maintain impartiality and hold all public officials accountable, regardless of party affiliation.

The selective reporting on Mayor Wu’s actions undermines the principles of a free society. If government officials can compile lists of individuals who oppose their policies without facing public scrutiny, it sets a dangerous precedent. It erodes the democratic ideals of free speech, dissent, and the right to hold elected officials accountable.

Moreover, the lack of coverage perpetuates the growing distrust many Americans feel toward mainstream media outlets. The media’s role is to be a watchdog for the people, providing unbiased information and holding those in power accountable. When they fail to do so consistently, citizens lose faith in the institution meant to keep them informed. Unfortunately, the press has become little more than a propaganda arm for the ruling class elites who continue expanding their power. Because of this, folks like Wu can engage in corruption willy-nilly without having to worry about being held accountable.


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