Helen Thomas probes White House on torture; online community sends flowers
Friday, April 25, 2008
"Where is everybody?" asked Thomas, apparently frustrated with lack of attention her colleagues had given the issue. The community at the social news siteanswered "Here we are"; a message they plan to deliver along with several thousand dollars in flowers and other gifts.
Thomas's questions became front-page news on reddit this morning, via a Think Progress blog post that includes a2 video clip of Thomas during yesterday's press briefing. Noting the president's repeated assertion that the U.S. does not torture, Thomas characterized the authorized interrogation techniques as torture.
"Now he has admitted that he did sign off on torture, he did know about it," said Thomas, "so how do you reconcile this credibility gap?"
Perino reiterated that the "United States has not, is not torturing any detainees in the global war on terror."
|That's not my question. My question is, why did he say publicly 'we do not torture', when he really did know that we do?|
Whether waterboarding, among other techniques, should be categorized as torture has been a subject of political contention in recent months. Thomas was unequivocal, responding to Perino: "That's not my question. My question is, why did he say publicly 'we do not torture', when he really did know that we do?"
In appreciation of the reporter asking "A REAL QUESTION" (as the headline put it), reddit users (known as "redditors") have collected over $3,000 for the purchase of flowers, edible arrangements and other gifts. Several 'redditors' also claimed to have ordered flowers for Thomas independently.
The bulk of the money was collected through Chipin.com, on a donation page created Micah Fitch, a musician and graphic designer in Minnesota. As of publication, the site registered 400 contributors for a total of $3,125. Fitch also created a wiki, FlowersWiki, for organizing the gift purchases and selecting messages to go with them. A large delivery to the offices of Thomas's employer Hearst Newspapers is being scheduled for Friday morning.,
One redditor claims that a friend who works foris pitching the story to the show's staff.
This is not the first time Thomas has received a high-volume flower gift. In 2006, an e-mail campaign that began on the political websitecollected over $2000 and resulted in delivery of 108 dozen roses.
- "Main Page" — , April 25, 2008
- "Breaking: Reporter Actually ... OMG .... Asks A REAL QUESTION at the White House!" — , April 24, 2008
- "Let's send Helen Thomas flowers for being the only reporter with the guts to ask tough questions at the White House." — , April 24, 2008
- "ChipIn for Flowers for Helen Thomas" — , April 24, 2008
- "comment by halcyonw regarding The Daily Show" — , April 24, 2008
- "Helen Thomas deserves some flowers." — , April 24, 2008
- Michael Calderone. "More Flowers for Helen" — , April 24, 2008
- "Press Briefing by Dana Perino" — , April 23, 2008 (12:45 p.m. )
- "Helen Thomas roundhouses Perino on torture" — , April 23, 2008
- Ben. "Thomas Breaks Press’s 14 Day Silence On Bush’s Torture Approval, Chides Colleagues: ‘Where Is Everybody?’" — , April 23, 2008 (Blog)
- egalia. "Helen Thomas Gets Flowers from the Left" — , April 6, 2006