“Can A Racially Motivated Massacre Be Considered Terrorism?”, Asks the Media
Since the massacre at Mother Emmanuel Church in Charleston, South Carolina by a white supremacist, several adjectives have been used by politicians and media personalities to describe the suspect, mostly along the lines of “sick”, “deranged” and “disturbed”. In stark contrast, the Tsarnaev brothers who committed the Boston Marathon bombing were described as “terrorists”. Senator and presidential candidate Lindsey Graham who frequently and angrily talks about “Muslim terrorists” and that we must wage multiple wars to kill them because they want to kill Americans, nonchalantly and casually and with no sign of his typical anger and frustration when discussing terrorism, described the suspect as “strange” and “deranged”, with no mention or concern that such white supremacist terrorists too want to kill Americans and have historically killed many Americans, unless one doesn’t consider blacks American. Chris Mathews of MSNBC verbalized that lack of anger, which Sen. Graham just exhibited, by saying: “Look at this kid. How can you be angry at him?”, referring to the mass murderer. That’s right: you can’t be angry because he’s white and one of “us”, rather than a person of color or a Muslim. President Obama, too, as expected, spoke like a typical white corporate politician and ignored the long history of acts of terrorism by white supremacists against blacks of this country and described the massacre as just another tragedy caused by a disturbed boy with easy access to guns. MSNBC host of “Morning Jo”, while admitting that this was an act of “racial terrorism”, cited and made comparisons with other massacres committed against random people and emphasized “the mental health”, putting this racist attack on the same level as those with random victims. Other reporters have been asking: “can it [the massacre] be described as an act of terrorism?”. No, of course not. What he did was just rude and inconsiderate. When asked that question, one MSNBC contributor said: “that’s a hard one. it doesn’t fit the normal definitions of terrorism” and went on to list some made up conditions a racially motivated massacre has to meet to be called terrorism. Apparently, he was picturing a dark-skinned Muslim in his mind, as he was pulling his list of conditions from his behind.
The suspect had hinted at his motive in a recent rant where he lamented that “blacks had taken over our country” and that he wanted to “take our country back”. This line of thinking and racist hate is neither new nor is it limited to those who openly talk about “white power” and killing blacks. While most police officers don’t talk about it – some do – they show it with their actions. This line of thinking and culture is in fact more common than the corporate media or politicians would admit. They won’t admit it because they’re complicit and part of the problem and in subtle and not so subtle ways propagate such racism and bigotry such as when they print or broadcast police lies without doing any fact checking or investigating on their own.
Such institutional racism is especially on display in regards to gross and total lack of concern or indignation about police violence and brutality against blacks which kills them at the rate of one every 28 hours. How unconcerned is the white political establishment about police killings of blacks? President Obama signed recently “the blue alert system to protect the safety of police officers”! That’s how concerned they are!