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'SHAME ON YOU': Whoopi Goldberg slams Austin American-Statesman for 'indefensible' Uvalde video leak

Austin American-Statesman leaked over an hour of disturbing footage from inside the school during the shooting
'I find it indefensible,' Whoopi Goldberg said about the leak (Dave Kotinsky/Getty Images)
'I find it indefensible,' Whoopi Goldberg said about the leak (Dave Kotinsky/Getty Images)

Whoopi Goldberg criticized a Texas newspaper for running a video from the Robb Elementary school shooting on May 24, which left 19 students and two teachers dead. Austin American-Statesman leaked over an hour of disturbing footage from inside the school during the shooting, which showed the gunman entering the building and the subsequent, heavily criticized response from local law enforcement. 

Goldberg noted on Wednesday's episode of 'The View' that the outlet's decision caused outrage amongst victims' families, as the committee investigating the shooting reportedly planned to show the video to Uvalde community members over the weekend. She said, “I find it indefensible. I'm sorry, you forgot that attached to all those sounds are people's children, and you didn't have to do this. They were going to see this video on Sunday, you did not have to release this and leak it. I think it's appalling and you should be ashamed of yourselves for doing that, for being thoughtless about the parents who have to relive this every day because it's on television every time you turn around.” 


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"I don't know if you guys over at that newspaper have kids, but, shame on you. I know it doesn't mean anything coming from me, but shame on you,” Goldberg added. Sunny Hostin, Goldberg's co-host, described the leak as a ‘difficult balancing act’ between journalistic ethics. She said, “It's so important that we be able to, as the public... videos, in my view, lead to just results, increased training, awareness, it can really change the public narrative.” Goldberg added that, though the footage confirmed to her that police officers didn't act swiftly enough to combat the shooter, ‘to leak this without telling the parents, without giving them the opportunity to re-steel themselves,’ was problematic. "For them not to have given them a heads up... these are real people, these are real children that died," she added. 


Meanwhile, the American-Statesman Ethics & Standards Editor Manny Garcia wrote in response to criticism over the publication of the footage, "Our goal is to continue to bring to light what happened at Robb Elementary, which the families and friends of the Uvalde victims have long been asking for.” He also noted that they decided to remove audio, which included the children's screams when the gunman entered their classroom, but proceed with releasing the footage after long and thoughtful consideration.


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"We have to bear witness to history, and transparency and unrelenting reporting is a way to bring change. This story is part of a much larger public records and legal battle from our journalists, aligned with reporters in Uvalde, around Texas, and the United States, to obtain all videos of the tragedy, body-camera footage, communications, 911 calls, and more. We are all aligned for the truth,” Garcia added.