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March 26, 2012

CNN Analyzes Zimmerman Audio, Can't Hear Word

Racial politics sucks. As David Horowitz says:

"Is anybody else out there as sick and tired as I am of lynch mob racists like Jesse Jackson and Al Sharpton (vide: Tawana Brawley, the Duke Lacrosse kids) who don the mantel of the “civil rights” movement to indict non-blacks in advance of the facts, and incite racial rage against them?"

I'm just sick of this kind of story in general. We're dealing with The Narrative here, and it's frustrating and unproductive. There are people who stand to benefit from racial division, and they're all there on this one. Even Obama thinks there is an up-side for him, whether it's diverting the nation's attention from his record, from some other news item, or whether he thinks division and discord somehow help his reelection prospects. Think about it; he's been pushing division at every opportunity, mostly on class lines. What a nasty brand of politics. And it's important to note that the White House has since clarified Obama's comments on this case. Apparently, things aren't working out exactly the way they wanted.

Anyway, CNN did a wonderful job of cleaning up the audio on the Zimmerman 911 call. It is relevant whether Zimmerman uttered a racial slur for a couple of reasons: A slur might open him up to federal jurisdiction on a civil rights rap, and it possibly sheds some light on his Zimmerman's state of mind--on whether he was defending himself or attacking. But. The only problem is, CNN can't seem to hear what is being said, "f***ing punks." Not "f***ing coons." They don't even consider it. Undoubtedly, a lot of people with an axe to grind will perform the same little mental trick.

It's a case of "I choose to hear this and not that." And before you accuse me of doing the same, note that I know a little about audio myself. He puffs the plosive "p" sound distinctly, and the "attack" on that phoneme/sound (the very first part of the sound wave) is very sharp and loud, since it involves pressuring up on the lips and making a popping sound. The "attack" on a "c" sound is softer and not as loud, since it originates further back in the mouth. In addition, the word "punks" has a volume dip in the middle with a distinctly louder "ks" sound at the end--like the sound of a cymbal. "Coons" has a sustained sound; it doesn't drop off. Below this video, I'm adding another video made by an audio guy. It's a little sloppy, but his reasoning is sound, though incomplete, and you can see what I'm talking about in graphic form.

We have some great audio guys who hang out at the blog. Maybe one or more of them will weigh-in and verify what I'm saying and what the guy says in the second video.

Please note that both of these videos involve explicit language.


The CNN report via Mediaite.

It's interesting to note that CNN doesn't even throw out the word "punks." Come on, guys. You can try to be a little more objective. You could have put some of this political nastiness to rest.

Here is the video from the audio guy on YouTube.

Note that the frozen frame above is a graphic representation of the words "f***ing punks." There are two because his equipment represents the sound in stereo. He is laying the word "coons" over the graphic to show the difference. His reasoning is pretty good, although he misses the point about the "attack" on the "p" sound. Surely someone will do a nicer and more thorough version of this in the future. Again, I welcome input from experts.

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posted by rdbrewer at 11:11 AM

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