Essay written for CNN, June 11, 2020

“Who are you essential to?” yelled a New York Police Department officer on June 2 as he confronted badged Associated Press (AP) videographer Robert Bumsted and AP photographer Maye-E Wong as they sought to report on a protest. The two journalists, who were asked to leave the scene, had pointed out that members of the press were considered “essential workers” and could not be forced off the streets. Part of the encounter was recorded, and the NYPD has said it would review the incident “as soon as possible.” AP spokesperson Lauren Easton answered the officer’s question: “The role of journalists is to report the news on behalf of the public.”

Read the full article at CNN.