At 10 p.m. Monday, President Obama addressed the nation, urging calm and peace in Ferguson in the wake of a St. Louis County grand jury's decision not to indict police officer Darren Wilson in the fatal shooting of an unarmed teenager, Michael Brown. Obama was quiet and composed as he called for the protests to remain peaceful.
“There will inevitably be some negative reaction,” he said, “and it will make for good TV.”
Even as he was uttering those words, smoke was rising from the Ferguson streets as police tried to disperse the outraged crowd. Rather than choose between his speech and the chaotic scene unfolding in Missouri, many news channels went to a split screen, showing one alongside the other. The result was, as many on Twitter pointed out, a surreal juxtaposition.
Here is what the nation saw as Obama delivered his remarks.
Three news networks right now. That Obama/Ferguson split screen is so surreal pic.twitter.com/QiaRgG0jo1— Amanda Wills (@AmandaWills) November 25, 2014
obama calling for peace while police deploy tear gas on protesters. pic.twitter.com/pyEAJIAwfz— Fidel Martinez (@fidmart85) November 25, 2014
This is some Orwellian shit. pic.twitter.com/IBpP2K1lZb— JeffSharlet (@JeffSharlet) November 25, 2014
These split screens. These juxtapositions. pic.twitter.com/eccvs7OHKL— Dave Itzkoff (@ditzkoff) November 25, 2014
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