Phoenix ABC affiliate KNXV is getting called out by viewers and the local media over where it chose to look for reaction to this weekend’s George Zimmerman verdict.
The night the verdict was announced, KNXV reporter Sara Goldenberg went to Lo-Lo’s Chicken & Waffles restaurant in downtown Phoenix to ask patrons for their thoughts on the verdict.
Shortly after the piece aired, Phoenix Business Journal editor Ilana Lowery tweeted, “As a journalist, I’m appalled
@abc15phx went to Lolo’s in Phoenix to get reaction to #ZimmermanVerdict. Why a chicken and waffle restaurant?”
Alt Weekly, Phoenix New Times wrote an article on the story asking if the local basketball courts weren’t good enough, then drove the point home by writing, “If this is flying right over your head, allow us to explain — the belief that African-Americans like fried chicken and waffles (or are good at playing basketball) is what’s called a stereotype.”
The station’s facebook page has been relatively quiet. One viewer wrote, “Really, ABC15? You look like a bunch of ignorant racists right now.” While Lowery told TVSpy not much else has come of the complaints other than retweets and a mention in New Times.
>UPDATE: Pat Costello, news director at KNXV told TVSpy he wasn’t happy with the choice of interview venue. “We want to be balanced in how we report the news and we fell far below our bar in this case.” He said the station was still gathering facts about what happened.