WKRC-TV, the CBS affiliate in Cincinnati, reports that in March one of their reporters was forced to leave a so-called "tea party" protest after a small portion of the mostly peaceful crowd began intimidating her and other members of the media:
The so-called tea parties are part of what Fox is calling a ‘national movement’ to protest the Obama Administration. The Cincinnati event was the largest one held so far. Organizers claim a crowd of 5,000, but aerial photographs suggest a smaller crowd of perhaps 1,500.
Even though the thuggish elements of these right-wing crowds remains small, the fact that they exist at all should serve as a warning sign to those organizing the events that they have a responsibility to not only keep their crowds in check, but also to avoid fueling the paranoia that can turn reasonable people into goons.
The fact that reporters are already being bullied and intimidated by these crowds should remind mainstream media that they can no longer afford to ignore the escalating rhetoric within the right-wing campaign against the Obama presidency.