News & Politics

Conservatives Attack Media Coverage of Disabled Man's Torture

On Wednesday, news broke that four black teenagers had violently assaulted a disabled white man while yelling “f*ck Trump!” and “f*ck white people!” While no concrete evidence has emerged linking the attackers to the “Black Lives Matter” movement, conservatives quickly branded this attack the “BLM Kidnapping,” and attacked the media coverage of the event.

The violent crime was broadcast on Facebook Live, but Facebook has since removed the video. CNN reported that the video showed a man tied up with his mouth covered, cowering in the corner of a room. Shouting “f*ck Donald Trump” and “f*ck white people,” the four black teens laughed while kicking and punching the man, and even cutting into his forehead with a knife.

But some admittedly strange things happened as the news broke. The Chicago Police Department hesitated to classify the attack as a hate crime. “CNN Tonight” host Don Lemon hesitated to call the attack “evil.” And on Thursday morning, The New York Times‘ Charles M. Blow published a column calling for more protests against Trump’s presidency, in a post entitled “The Anti-Inauguration.”

Radio personality Steven Crowder wasted no time denouncing the media’s reaction to the news. Tweeting to his 330,000 followers, he argued that this event “is proof positive that the left doesn’t care about racism. Only when it’s a political tool.”

He further argued that this event “was an opportunity for the left’s redemption.” Liberals had a chance to show that they did not have a double standard — they had a chance to condemn racist violence against whites just as they condemned racist violence against blacks. “Reporters just needed to tell the truth. Instead, they sealed their casket.”

Self-described anti-racism strategist Tariq Nasheed attacked conservatives’ branding of the event as the “BLM Kidnapping.” He denounced that language as “just another white supremacist tactic to implicate and ultimately punish ALL Black people.”

Crowder responded to this with anger. “Just when I think you couldn’t tweet anything dumber/sub-human… you go and do something like this,” he declared.

Conservative author Mike Cernovich shot back at those who, like Nasheed, might disagree that this crime should be connected with “Black Lives Matter.” Tweeting to his 184,000 followers, Cernovich declared, “If Trump must ‘disavow’ every random Internet troll, then #BlackLivesMatter must disavow every crime or else they support it. #BLMKidnapping.”

Indeed, at quite a few “Black Lives Matter” rallies, there has been violence committed against white people because of the color of their skin. And at one college campus, activists for “people of color” physically shut down a bridge, preventing any white people from crossing.

This is emphatically not to say that “Black Lives Matter” as a movement is dedicated to attacking white people — it isn’t — but unfortunately its rhetoric has spilled over in ugly ways. Cernovich does have a point that if Trump is to be held accountable for the violence allegedly done in his name (and many of the “hate crimes” have been revealed to be hoaxes), “Black Lives Matter” should not be immune.

LifeZette editor-in-chief Laura Ingraham paraphrased CNN, arguing that the Chicago Police Department said the crime “wasn’t motivated by race or politics.” While the department did not exactly say that, their hesitance to classify it as a hate crime seems to imply it.

Jeremy Nolt, a former Trump campaign volunteer with 18,000 followers, attacked CNN’s Don Lemon. “Lemon defending the #BLMKidnapping is the most CNN thing I’ve ever heard. The media’s anti-white rhetoric is encouraging the violence.”

In that vein, Jack Posobiec, special projects director of Citizens 4 Trump, warned that the media is still encouraging such violence. Posobiec tweeted to his 61,500 followers, “The @nytimes Fans Flames of Violence Against Trump One Day After #BLMKidnapping,” including the link to Charles Blow’s most recent column.

Indeed, in some ways, Blow’s article hinted at calling for violence. “Exclaiming your resistance, while necessary, is insufficient,” the New York Times author declared.

“Just because succession of power in our fragile democracy isn’t denied by dictator or compelled by coup,” Blow argued, “does not mean that the majority of Americans who voted for someone other than Trump, and view his ascension as an offense, should feel any pressure or compunction to bear witness to the pomp and pageantry surrounding the installation of a demi-fascist and full-blown demagogue as president.”

Wow. How does that not count as advocating violence? Oh, because Blow includes, “The point is not necessarily to disrupt the peaceful transfer of power, but rather to deprive it of oxygen and eyeballs.”

To some extent, I actually feel bad for Blow, who likely penned the article a short time ago, and did not anticipate this attack happening right before his op-ed launched.

This reminds me of the Bible verse tweeted by Texas Lieutenant Governor Dan Patrick’s account just after the attack on a gay nightclub in Orlando, Florida. The tweet read, “Do not be deceived: God cannot be mocked. A man reaps what he sows,” a quote from Galatians 6:7. This tweet would not have garnered attention, but since it followed an attack on a gay nightclub, it seemed hateful and insensitive. But such tweets are usually scheduled in advance, and the same is even more true for op-eds like Blow’s.

Nevertheless, his continuing insistence on opposing Trump in any way possible cannot be held blameless when attacks like this are taking place. Indeed, if Trump is to be held accountable for attacks committed in his name, should Blow not be held accountable for anti-Trump attacks when he consistently declares Trump to be sexist, racist, fascist, bigoted, and all-around evil? Oh, and a “terroristic toddler.”

Unfortunately, I would not be surprised to hear that these four black teens attacking the disabled white boy were inspired by rhetoric like Blow’s. Their yelling “f*ck Donald Trump!” and “f*ck white people!” likely revealed a political and racial motive, and a motive not without precedent.