Pointergate outrage continues, protests outside Augsburg College

Jessie Bekker

Activists against KSTP’s “pointergate” story gathered at Augsburg College on West Bank near the University of Minnesota yesterday to protest the heated story that aired last week, the Star Tribune reported.

Stanley Hubbard, Hubbard Broadcasting chairman – the company that owns KSTP’s – spoke in defense of KSTP, and refused to apologize on behalf of the news station, saying such notion would be “ridiculous,” according to MPR News.

The story, which accuses Mayor Betsy Hodges of flashing a gang sign beside Navell Gordon in a published photograph, has caught the eye of social media, trending as “#pointergate” over Twitter, the Minnesota Daily reported.

Over 100 protesters braved the cold to hear Hubbard’s speech, MPR reported, about 30 of which, according to the Tribune, waved “large red foam fingers typical at sporting events.” Critics are referring to the case as an example of racial bias in the media, the Tribune said.

Hubbard’s company owns broadcasting stations spanning Minnesota, Wisconsin, New York, and Mexico, according to the Tribune, and contended KSTP reporters had reported thoroughly prior to release of the report.

But police are still concerned that Hodge’s gesture could put officers at risk, MPR reported.

Police union chief John Delmonico told the Tribune that Hodges must make a choice between supporting city gangs or the police.

Ryan Kennedy, executive director of the Minnesota Public Interest Research Group, the organization responsible for putting on the protest, recognized Gordon as “collateral damage” in the article, the Tribune reported.

“We’re not saying that all media are complicit in this,” Kennedy told the Tribune, “but there’s no place for it from any station.”