If they are, I don’t have a problem with it. One reporter isn’t happy, though, that biker groups are allegedly working with the Uvalde Police Department to protect the privacy of grieving families as they hold the funerals of their children and the two teachers.

A Houston Chronicle health reporter (why did Houston’s liberal newspaper send a health reporter?) and a CNN reporter both have tweets about being denied access to cover Uvalde stories as they would like to do. Julian Gill, the Houston Chronicle reporter has video of a bit of physical contact with a biker. The biker is explaining why Gill is being prevented from getting too close to the funeral site and taking photos of the scene. You can see police cars from Lubbock Police and Pearland Police (Houston area) and uniformed police along the route they are taking.

Three groups of bikers are helping keep the perimeters secure around the funerals as reporters try to get families to comment for their stories. We know how hyper-politicized the story has become, as has the Buffalo story before it. Can’t the families lay to rest their children without having a reporter pepper them with questions and photograph the scene? Just a little privacy for a few hours, is that too much to ask? Some of the families are willingly speaking to the press and telling their stories. Reporters aren’t entitled to have access to the families if they wish to have some privacy. The police had sectioned off the reporters and the bikers were there to help make sure the boundaries were respected, according to reports.

Gill’s tweet reads as though he felt intimidated by the bikers. Maybe he was but the one biker who was talking to him in the video sounded calm and only when he stepped toward the cemetery did Gill and the biker have brief physical contact. The biker appears to block Gill from moving in that direction.

Gill’s article in the Chronicle that day noted the heavy police presence. The three biker groups listed as helping the police don’t exactly sound like Hell’s Angels. The biker in Gill’s video says he’s an EMT.

Thursday’s grief was private, the ceremonies quiet and heavily guarded by police. A somber mood had seeped into every facet of the small south Texas community.

Journalists were not allowed access to the funeral ceremonies. Many locals declined to speak to the press after a days-long barrage of media attention. Emotions were still fresh.

Fire trucks and a fleet of police officers from Uvalde and cities across Texas, including Allen, Pearland, Conroe and Lubbock, created blockades and threatened to arrest reporters for stepping near the property.

They were assisted by dozens of bikers who were members of at least three clubs — Guardians of the Children, Thin Blue Line LEMC and Marines MC. The bikers physically obstructed cameras within designated media areas, followed reporters and harassed them as they walked closer toward the ceremonies. One member of Guardians of the Children, who declined to give her name, said the group was “working with the police.”

Outside the funeral for Torres, another unidentified biker club member said, “We just want to give the families a safe and peaceful space.”

A CNN reporter was stopped by police from going into the Uvalde School District building. The reporter was told to leave or be arrested for trespassing when Uvalde police arrived.

It makes more sense that the CNN reporter went there for a story than attempting to intrude on a child’s funeral.

The families should be able to go through this horrible time with as much support as possible from the community. It’s a small town where everyone likely knows everyone else. It’s not too much to ask that their privacy be respected and protected from reporters. Their questions can come another day.

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