NYT: ‘It’s just been hell’ for Ray Epps thanks to right-wing media figures. We have some questions!

The New York Times is under fire for running a “woe is me” piece about the infamous Ray Epps, the Jan. 6th rioter who suspiciously hasn’t been charged with anything despite being filmed encouraging “Stop the Steal” protesters to “go into the Capitol.”

Because of all the video footage of Epps, there’s been a going theory on the right that perhaps he’s a federal agent who’d purposefully helped instigate the riot. But to hear the Times’ tell it, this theory has ruined the man’s life.

“Ray Epps has suffered enormously in the past 10 months as right-wing media figures and Republican politicians have baselessly described him as a covert government agent who helped to instigate the attack on the Capitol last year,” the piece reads.

“Strangers have assailed him as a coward and a traitor and have menacingly cautioned him to sleep with one eye open. He was forced to sell his business and his home in Arizona. Fearing for his safety and uncertain of his future, he and his wife moved into a mobile home in the foothills of the Rockies, with all of their belongings crammed into shipping containers in a high-desert meadow, a mile or two away.”

“And for what — lies? All of this, it’s just been hell,” Epps said to the Times.

But critics have pushed back with fury.

One, they’ve argued that life has been far more hellish for the numerous Jan. 6th rioters who were arrested and charged for essentially doing his bidding and entering the Capitol.


Two, they’ve pushed back with evidence of Epp’s culpability, including video footage of him encouraging “Stop the Steal” protesters to “go into the Capitol.”


And three, they’ve drawn attention to the FBI’s refusal to disown Epps.

Testifying before the Senate back in January, top FBI official Jill Sanborn was asked point-blank by Sen. Ted Cruz whether Epp’s a “fed.”

In response, Sanborn refused to say “no.” Instead, she said that she “cannot answer.”


Sanborn was also asked whether any undercover FBI agents had actively participated in the riot. Again she refused to just say “no.”

Fox News host Tucker Carlson responded to her testimony at the time by saying, “That tells you a lot.”


Of Epps’ own culpability, the Times portrays his actions as mere mistakes that he now regrets.

“Mr. Epps also said he regretted sending a text to his nephew, well after the violence had erupted, in which he discussed how he helped to orchestrate the movements of people who were leaving Mr. Trump’s speech near the White House by pointing them in the direction of the Capitol,” the piece reads.

“Mr. Epps further acknowledged that while he moved past barricades into a restricted area of the Capitol grounds, he did not go into the building itself. The vast majority of those who did not enter the building or commit additional crimes have not been charged. By the time the violence started spreading, Mr. Epps had already left the Capitol, having helped to get a sick protester to safety.”

Critics aren’t buying this narrative either:


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Vivek Saxena


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