Washington — After Lenny Posner’s six-year-old son Noah died in Sandy Hook, he briefly thought of showing the world the damage that an AR-15-style rifle had done to his child.
His first thought was, “It will move some people and change some minds.”
His second: “Not my child.”
The sadness and anger of two horrific mass shootings in Texas and New York every 10 days has sparked old controversy. Will disseminating graphic images of the consequences of gun violence put the country’s predicaed leaders into action?
From the abolition movement to the Black Lives Matter, from the Holocaust to the Vietnam War to Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, photography and film have exposed the human suffering of racism, authoritarianism, and catastrophic foreign policy. They encourage public protests and sometimes make a difference. However, the possibility of using these images to end the official inertia after a mass shooting presents new and disastrous considerations for the victim’s family. Many victims categorically reject such ideas.
Bruce Shapiro, executive director of the Dirt Center for Journalism and Trauma at Columbia University, quotes the photographer as saying, “It’s true that shocking photographs of suffering sometimes leave traces.” Nick Ut’s famous photo A photo of a naked Vietnamese girl who escaped from the napalm attack in 1972.
“It’s challenging this ethical call, if you’re a photo editor, which photos look like exploitative, and which images touch people’s consciences and put a needle in the debate. You really don’t know if you want to move it. “
Mainstream media may display disturbing images of the deceased to explain the horror of the event. Photo by Lindsey Adario Of a mother, two children, and a family friend who were killed in March in Irpin, Ukraine Image of a 3-year-old Syrian Kurdish boy Its body was washed ashore in Turkey in 2015. However, they rarely show human bloodshed.
“We always balance the news value of an image with the service to our readers, whether the image is dignified to the victim or compassionate to the family and loved ones in the picture. “We strive to take the picture,” said director Megan Laurum. Photo shoot at the New York Times. “I don’t want to withhold images that help people understand what happened in these scenarios, but I don’t publish provocative images either.”
In the case of the Uvalde shooting, photojournalist was not allowed on the school grounds and law enforcement agencies did not release images from the crime scene. Press photographers could only capture what was visible outside the school, including images created by Pete Luna of Uvalde Leader News, who witnessed children fleeing the classroom after climbing through the window. The decision to publish a graphic image from this situation is controversial, as the media did not have access to the images in the aftermath of the shoot.
Noah Posner was one of the first children to shoot at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Connecticut since December 14, 2012, killing 20 first graders and 6 educators. Noah hid in the bathroom of the classroom with 15 classmates. More than 80 bullets were fired from the Bushmaster semi-automatic rifle into this space, killing all but one child.
The bullet tore Noah’s back, arms, hands, and face, destroying most of his chin. Posner and Noah’s mother, Véronique de la Rosa, had a private viewing in the casket before the funeral attended by then-Governor of Connecticut, Dannel Malloy. When Mr. Malloy arrived, Mr. De La Rosa picked him up and met his son lying in a mahogany casket in the room behind the funeral hall in Fairfield, Connecticut.
“I’m thinking of myself.” I’m going to faint.She will show me an open wound and I’m not going to handle it well, “Malloy said in an interview with my book. “Sandy Hook: The Battle of America’s Tragedy and Truth.”
The wound on Noah’s mouth was hidden by a white cloth square, so Mr. Malloy couldn’t show the raw wound. “I wouldn’t have brought it to that level,” De La Rosa said. But the governor “still saw a dead child,” she said. “The child, who was running around like a small locomotive virtually the day before, was full of energy.”
After Sandy Hook, Connecticut passed some of the strictest gun safety measures in the country.
But at the same time, filmmaker Michael Moore had different results when he proposed to publish photos of crime scenes by relatives of Sandy Hook’s victims as a way to spur political action. The Sandy Hook family wrote, produced, and directed the 2002 documentary Bowling for Columbine about shooting at a high school in Colorado in 1999. I mistakenly thought that I was trying to find a photo. They worked with the Connecticut state government for strict legislation banning access to materials related to victims. Photos of Sandy Hook’s victims are now accessible only to families.
Emily Bernard, author and professor of English at the University of Vermont, said:
“But those who have access to those pictures and tend to spread them need to ask themselves who will benefit. Will this enlighten us or provide a solution? Or is it just terrible? “
At the 2020 Seminar at Columbia University’s Dirt Center for Journalism and Trauma “Drawing the death of a black man” Professor Bernard discussed photographs of a formerly enslaved man during the civil war, called Gordon in some historical references and Peter in others. The image of a shirtless man, disseminated by abolitionists, was severely hurt by the beatings, and his back was “essential to the development of a campaign against slavery,” she said.
1955, Mamie Till Mobley Invited Jet Magazine photographer David JacksonTwo white men were swiftly arrested to photograph the brutal body of their 14-year-old son Emmett Till, who was severely beaten on the Tallahatchie River in Mississippi. The images and the open casket of Emmett Till at the funeral in Chicago helped ignite the civil rights movement.
In 2020, a video of a Minneapolis police officer kneeling on George Floyd’s neck, shot by teenage witness Darnella Brager, caused worldwide anger, Some of the biggest protests In American history. However, this recording also sparked a fierce debate about the ubiquity of the image of violence against blacks and the portrayal of a relatively small number of white victims.
“For all the political usefulness of these videos and images, all of the motivational usefulness in taking people to the streets or revealing exactly what’s going on, I think it’s I’m not entirely sure if it’s ethical or the right to display, “these images look like this,” said New Yorker writer Geranikov. Next Dean He said at a Colombian seminar at the Faculty of Journalism, University of Columbia.
“For horrific crimes, we tend not to see white Americans appearing the same. You’ll probably meet whites abroad,” Cobb said. ((((Photograph of Charles Porter IV Pulitzer Prize-winning firefighter, Chris Fields, with the exception of hugging a baby who was fatally injured after the 1995 bombing of Oklahoma City. )
Some journalists, scholars and survivors have suggested publishing photos. scene A potentially powerful but less invasive approach is to use violence on behalf of the victim. In 2014, after a Taliban fighter attacked a school in Peshawar, Pakistan, killing at least 134 school children, the news agency released images of the school’s bloody classrooms.
Documentary photographer, filmmaker Nina Berman of Colombia said: Professor of journalism.
Sandy Hook School Massacre
“Destroyed windows, destroyed desks, complete destruction of rooms with this weapon designed solely to annihilate humans. That’s the place of political conversation now. Why are we armed with AR-15? Why do our parliamentarians think this is what the Constitution has considered so far? “
But American journalists “can’t even try to make these pictures,” Berman said. Crime scenes are rapidly blocked and photographers are banned. Police may restrict access to photos of crime scenes for months or years after the investigation is completed. As a result, the most vibrant scenes are often shot outdoors, such as the massacre after the Boston Marathon bombings in 2013 and the shootings in Las Vegas in 2017.
“Because of a violent culture, we spend a lot of time making sure that no one can actually see the violence,” Berman said. “Something else is happening here. I don’t know if we’re just trying to be sensitive.”
After the death of his son, Mr. Posner Dedicated his life to the fight against conspiracy theorists The Sandyhook mass shootings spread the false claim that it was a government prank aimed at facilitating gun control efforts. He is not convinced that publishing Noah’s photos has changed a lot.
“Everything is just amplified,” he said. “Hoaxes are more often denied, absolutists are more likely to say, and those traumatized by mass shootings are more traumatized.”