News About John Ziegler

5/18/2005

JZ Releases Statement on TV Coverage of His Trial/"This is Hilarious" Incident

John Ziegler released the following statement regarding the media coverage of his civil trial today.

"While I had no doubt the media coverage of me and my trial would be biased against my side (despite the interest one might expect media outlets may have in protecting free speech rights), even I am stunned by the massive unfairness and rank incompetence that is pervading the vast majority of the extensive media coverage of my trial.

As a media pro I am more than willing to accept such bias to a certain degree, but much of what I have seen so far, especially on television, has been an embarrassment to what is left of journalism and has gone way past simple and subtle bias. While there have been numerous examples of this reality, there is one that sticks out far more than any other.

Yesterday, while the lawyers were conferring with the judge during a break, I turned to my friend and former TV cohost John Yarmuth and mouthed the words "This is hilarious." At least two TV stations (including the plaintiffs former employer whose GM testifed against me) ran the clip with a voice over explaining, without any context or explanation, that I had mouthed the words "This is hilarious" to a spectator. Not ONE reporter bothered to ask me what I thought was hilarious. Running the video in such a matter was an absolute joke.

Perhaps even more incredibly, today when I was asked about the episode in court I delivered an answer so compelling that the plaintiff's counsel immediately stopped any further questioning. In a voice cracking with emotion I explained that what I had found to be 'hilarious' was that the plaintiffs were attempting to get my former co-worker/friend Terry Meiners to comment on an e-mail he sent the plaintiff in which he claimed an unnamed 'former love interest' told him, that I told her, that my dead mother, told me that I should not get married because I would mistreat my wife and that I had told this to the love interest who had told this to Terry who e-mailed it to the plaintiff after I was fired. I found the idea that this 'evidence' would be presented by the plaintiffs to be HILARIOUS (especially since I had spoken to the only former 'love interests' that had ever met Terry and they denied ever having such a conversation) and I mouthed those words to a friend during a break in testimony.

However, at least two TV 'news' organizations that addressed the issue as it occurred in court today, did so without playing the most important or interesting part of my testimony. One TV website even revealed its cluelessness by having a headline on its website 'Prosecutor Scolds Ziegler,' when there is no PROSECUTOR in a civil trial! Another TV station posted a photo on their website of me mouthing the words that made me look like some sort of rabid snake.

Also completely ignored (incredibly) was the startling revelation that the number one talk station in the state had its GM tell its most outspoken talk show host NOT to criticize Democrat Ben Chandler during the 2003 race to be the Governor of Kentucky!!!! Instead of revealing that extraordinary news, one station chose to 'break' the story that I had once quit a job over a boss' reaction to something I said on the air which did not even happen during the actual trial today, but rather in testimony outside the presence of the jury that the judge ruled inadmissible!!

I respectfully request that some remote level of journalistic standards be restored to this fiasco. Even a radio talk show host should be more objective and credible than most of the coverage this trial has brought so far."

Below is a link to the only fair headline JZ could find, though the article is less than solid.

http://www.wave3.com

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