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Capitol Hill Community Post | JONATHAN CHOE’S article about Miller Park

From Eileen Hood

To Whom it May Concern,

I would like to register a formal complaint in regard to the news article reported by Jonathan Choe, which aired on KOMO 4, Friday, January 8, 2021.

I was returning home from work, Friday, January 8th about 1 pm and was approached by Jonathan Choe and a camera person as I entered the gate to my home. Jonathan indicated that he had already spoken to my son and wanted to ask me some questions about the micro grid project at Miller Park and the un-housed population currently living in the park. I explained to him I am a health care worker, I had just received my first COVID vaccine and I am suffering from Post Viral Syndrome due to having COVID in October. I had to hold the gate of my home to steady myself while we talked. I also noted that I suffer with asthma. He persisted in wanting to talk about the City of Seattle’s project and the folks currently living in the park. I live directly across the street from Miller Park and have watched the encampment grow over the course of the pandemic.

He asked me several questions, and it was apparent he was looking for me to agree with him that the City of Seattle has the right to do a mini sweep of the park on January 11th. At one point he said “you can’t use the park, right?” I corrected him, that this was in fact not true, my family does use the park. We have never had an unpleasant interaction with the folks that currently live there. No matter what I said he kept trying to direct me to agree that the folks living in the park should be moved.

When I had a chance to view the piece on KOMO my worst fears were true, Jonathan Choe had edited the piece to make it appear that I am in favor of city sweeps and uprooting our un-housed population. As a consequence, I am embarrassed and devastated. I was taken advantage of by Jonathan Choe. He was clearly looking to interview people that would back up his opinion that the City has the right to move homeless people. His interview with my son did not air, as my son was clearly more quick witted and stated that he does not support sweeps or removal of encampments of any kind.

Sensationalist reporting is the last thing our country needs right now. We need facts and truth. Again, I am humiliated that my name and face are included in this piece that clearly does not represent my views.

Sincerely,
Eileen Hood

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MarciaX
MarciaX
1 month ago

The sleight-of-hand here is obvious. By juxtaposing Durkan’s comment with Hood’s the KOMO editor made it appear she was agreeing with Durkan when she may well have been (and probably was) responding to an entirely different question. The second Hood sound bite is completely decontextualized. This is unethical behavior at best and libelous at worst.

What’s really sad is that a decade ago, KOMO was locally owned and hands-down the best TV news operation in the city. But it has since been bought by an out-of-state corporation (Sinclair) that strives to be even more consistently Trumpian than Fox News, even in urban markets like Seattle where the vast majority don’t share that cynical worldview. In addition to this kind of routinely slanted coverage by their newsroom, they’ve produced two full-length documentaries in the past year claiming that drug use is the sole reason for homelessness, completely ignoring all other factors such as poverty and a nationwide shortage of affordable housing, not to mention the mountains of research showing that drugs are much more a symptom of homelessness and despair than they are a cause. Hood has my deepest sympathies and I trust next time she’s approached by a KOMO reporter, she will just say “no comment.” As should everyone else.

Shrimptank
Shrimptank
1 month ago

I’m sorry this happened to you! I’ve also been held up by a reporter and camera crew before looking for something juicy and I also refused to answer their bait-y questions. I’m no lawyer, but you should demand an on-air retraction from KOMO. And if nothing else, get a legal consultation.

Mike
Mike
1 month ago

Wow. Thank you for this article. I was tempted to go to the KOMO site and read the full article/watch the show they created. Then I thought twice and decided I didn’t want to give that organization another view on their distorted story. I’m saddened that Eileen was used by KOMO and I appreciated her sharing her experience on the CHS blog.

Tammy Jo
Tammy Jo
1 month ago

Thanks Eileen for taking the time to get your story out. Love from our family to yours

The Ghostt Of Capitol Hill
The Ghostt Of Capitol Hill
1 month ago

These are the voices we need!