U.S. Congresswoman and “Squad” member Cori Bush (D-MO) earned an embarrassing community fact-checking note on X (formerly Twitter) on Wednesday after claiming that “the institutions of racism and white supremacy” led to the killing of a young man who robbed a convenience store and then attempted to take an officer’s gun during the ensuing struggle.
Rep. Bush, who has elected to Congress in 2020 following the Black Lives Matter movement and the death of George Floyd, has carved out a niche by injecting allegations of racism into community policing matters like the one involving Michael Brown of Ferguson, Missouri. Following Brown’s death in 2014, the Obama Justice Department launched a comprehensive review of the circumstances and concluded that Captain Darren Johnson should not be charged for the fatal shooting.
On Wednesday, Rep. Bush posted a photo of Brown, saying, “We will continue to fight for justice and accountability.” Shortly after, X slapped the post with a community note, which is added to posts that contain misleading information and need context.
“Brown robbed a convenience store, attacked officer Wilson, reached into his patrol vehicle and struggled over the police firearm and was discharged, then charged the officer at gunpoint resisting arrest. Investigations including Obama’s DOJ ruled race was not a factor,” read the note, linking to the DOJ’s investigation.
Today is the 9th anniversary of Mike Brown’s killing.
He would be alive today if the institutions of racism and white supremacy were eradicated.
He should be alive today.
We will never forget.
We will continue to fight for justice and accountability. pic.twitter.com/7E2svmNMOb
— Cori Bush (@CoriBush) August 9, 2023
X owner Elon Musk has been unapologetic about applying the community note feature to politicians who stray from the facts of an issue. In May, fellow Squad member Rep. Rashida Tlaib (D-MI) got fact-checked online after claiming that Israel is an “apartheid state.” Last year Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-NY) faced a similar fate after claiming that Republicans killed legislation to raise the federal minimum wage. The proposal was actually defeated due to seven Democratic senators who prevented its passage in the chamber.
Online allegations of racism, especially in the political sphere, are not uncommon. During a recent interview, Musk swatted down allegations that issues of racism have become worse on X since he took ownership last year. That hasn’t stopped Democratic politicians like Rep. Bush from using the platform to tie race to policing issues, a toxic combination that critics say inflames an already divisive issue around the role of police officers in communities of color.