Today marked a major shift in the way the U.S. Department of Justice is starting to handle the writing and issuance of official reports on police use of violence in the United States. The change was prompted by calls from graphics artists and politicians likely to lose an upcoming election.
In an official press conference held at the White House, President Obama announced this morning that he has ordered the creation of a new committee that is being charged with investigating how the recently issued DOJ report on the use of police use of force in Ferguson was created using the wrong Microsoft Word Template.
While the report was issued weeks ago, the mistake went largely unnoticed until San Francisco based human rights activist, feminist and vegan George Geankoplis noticed the mistake.
Breaking the story in an explosive blog entry on VeganFeministMen Dot Com, Geankoplis used advanced graphics analysis tools to expose the Department of Justice’s use of the default MS Word “Miscellaneous Stationery Template” instead of the standard “Another Black Guy Killed By Cops Template” which was custom created by the DOJ decades ago in an effort to stem police violence against blacks.
Geankoplis claims that this was no mistake and it was done intentionally by a DOJ insider as part of a coverup, but declined to speculate on the ultimate reasons behind the actions or provide evidence to support the charges. He claims that the use of the wrong template caused substantive changes in the way the report was read by the general public, distracting from the fact that the Serif font is using small decorative flourishes on the ends of some of the strokes that make up the letters of the report and promoting the use of Arial fonts over others. This, according to him, is a clear projection of the continuing inequality of gender roles in the vegan community.
The blog post quickly became viral, leading to serious backlash from the American public according to Geankoplis, who “otherwise did not give a shit about my gloves or the content of the report.”
President Obama’s statements today seem to reinforce Geankoplis’ opinions. Obama used a projector and MS Word to demonstrate to journalists how entire passages were left out of the report. “When you click on File, and New from Template, it’s easy to see how this would be a simple mistake, but the correct template includes lengthy passages and convoluted legal explanations aimed at allowing cops to avoid legal prosecution,” said Obama. “Using the wrong Word template is inexcusable,” he said. After that, he stood silent at the podium for about 25 more minutes and was unable to continue speaking after the computer running his teleprompter froze up.
The White House also handed out a written statement outlining the scope and goals of the newly created committee, indicating that no expense will be spared in the quest to ensure that this mistake will not happen again, that the correct fonts, headers, footers and legal passages will be used to exonerate whatever police department the report is pretending to discuss.
FOIA requests from the Department of Justice were answered with heavily redacted copies of the Microsoft MS Word Manual for Version 7.4.