Former White House “green jobs czar” Van Jones joined a vast chorus last week when he voiced his opinion that a double standard exists in the way we discuss white guy terrorism versus other varietieswrites B A Duffy on Accuracy in Media. (Gee, Ben, it seems like it's been such a long time since you've authored anything, can't we get posts from you to read more often?!)
Jones, who is a 9/11 truther, a self-described communist, and a supporter of convicted cop killer Mumia Abu-Jamal, sounded about as cogent as usual when he tweeted: “I call on the media to use the terms ‘white racist’ + ‘terrorist’ with same force & ease that we would use terms ‘Muslim’ + ‘terrorist.’”
How insightful of him. Hmmm…could the Charleston shooter be the benefactor of #whiteprivilege?
The main problem with Jones’s shallow analysis is that plenty of people are calling Dylann Roof a terrorist. Like most people on the Left, Jones is calling Roof a terrorist within the context of wondering why no one else dares to call him a terrorist. He singles out the media, as if they have been reluctant to slap Dylann Roof with the T-word. They haven’t.
… Clearly, Gladstone, The New York Times, CNN, and pretty much everyone else believes that the Charleston shooting was terrorism. So do I, by the way, though I’m not prattling on about how no one is saying what everyone is saying.
If Van Jones wants to find a double standard in this story, I could point him in the right direction. Answer me this, Van: if “black lives matter” why do the media only care when the killer is white? Why was Kermit Gosnell’s dead baby factory a “local crime story” virtually ignored by the mainstream press? Why don’t gangland murders get the same coverage as the Charleston shooting?
Jones’s other premise—that reporters couple the words “Muslim” and “terrorist” with ease—is even less supportable. Many news outlets are scared to use those words together, nearly as scared as Jones’s former boss, Barack Obama.
When Jones says that the media are quick to label Muslim violence “terror,” I think of MSNBC’s Contessa Brewer. After a Pakistani man named Faisal Shahzad attempted to blow Times Square to smithereens in 2010, Ms. Brewer appeared on the liberal Stephanie Miller Show. “I get frustrated…” she said. “There was part of me that was hoping this was not going to be anybody with ties to any kind of Islamic country.”
Please let it be a white guy, please let it be a white guy…
Brewer continued: “…There are a lot of people who want to use terrorist intent to justify writing off people who believe in a certain way or come from certain countries or whose skin color is a certain way. I mean they use it as justification for really outdated bigotry.” Interestingly, that’s exactly what’s happened in the wake of the Charleston shooting and her former network is leading the charge.
Don’t let Van Jones fool you—white guy terrorism is the media’s favorite story. It’s Islamic terror stories that journalists report only grudgingly, often conjuring up alternative explanations to make the jihad angle disappear. When Major Nidal Hasan shot 45 people at Fort Hood in 2009, the media went into overdrive trying to find a motive other than Islam. They were hoping for a crazed Iraq vet story, preferably one that implicated a white male. As luck would have it, the perpetrator was a soldier! Unfortunately, he was also a Palestinian-American, a Muslim, and a psychiatrist who had never deployed. The media tried their best to convince the public that Hasan had contracted “secondary PTSD” from listening to actual combat veterans tell grisly war stories. Clearly, they intended to deal with Hasan’s problematic religious affiliation by rendering it coincidental.
… The BBC is particularly shy about calling Muslim terror by its name. Their policy is to be very, very careful with the T-word because it can be a “difficult and emotive subject with significant political overtones.” … the BBC uses the word “terrorism” sparingly…to describe right-wing bombers, or to ask why everyone isn’t using that word to describe Dylann Roof. Yes, the BBC had its own column lamenting the fact that no one is using the term “terrorist” in relation to the Charleston massacre. No one except everyone.
What a truly curious phenomenon—pundits across the media spectrum are demanding to know why no one will use the T-word to describe the Charleston shooter, when in fact nearly everyone is using that exact word.
… As I’ve learned from watching the news, there is no Muslim terrorism, only occasional acts of terrorism committed by people who happen to be Muslim. White racist terrorism, on the other hand, is very real indeed.