*The following is an opinion column by R Muse*
There is an unspoken “rule” every print and broadcast journalist on the planet knows almost innately and it is particularly true in America. The rule is “if it bleeds, it leads” and what should be self-explanatory is that if there is any kind of bloodshed, especially from shootings, it is like click-bait material for far too many alleged “news sites” and certain to garner a lot of attention.
When Trump told the audience at Central Command that the American media was deliberately not reporting or publicizing terror attacks, they knew he was lying. Because although they are not journalists, they do closely monitor the news and know that “if it bleeds, it leads” and that no media outlets or platforms failed to report terrorist attacks anyplace; it is just too profitable not to report death and destruction.
After being called on his lie, Trump released a “list” of terror attacks he claimed were never reported to the public. Of course, like everything issuing forth from the Trump, his list was a monumental lie in that the “events” were well-reported and remembered by anyone conscious over the past few years. But one specific thing stood out more than the ‘questionable’ number of terror attacks listed; every last one of those events on the list were reported, worldwide.
Although it was a long list, one couldn’t help but notice that it omitted a fair number of terror attacks against American citizens on American soil. It is no coincidence that they were all the omissions were committed by white males not remotely affiliated with the Muslim religion or Islamic community.
The list even left off the most recent attack on a Mosque; the one by a Trump fanatic in Canada against Muslim men. There is really only one reason the Trump left out several other acts of terror committed by white extremists against other Americans and it is part and parcel of the Trump-Bannon domestic policy founded on a religious war against one particular religion in America, Islam.
The deliberate omission is necessary for Trump to convince Americans that the only one thing they have to fear is Islam and its adherents. Forget all the mass theater and school shootings, certainly terror attacks, or the racist massacre at an African American church, or the religious attack on a Colorado Planned Parenthood clinic because they were committed by white extremists, not Muslims.
Just recently, a Republican from Wisconsin actually tried to defend the omission of white extremist terror attacks from Trump’s list. Sean Duffy (R-WI) said no matter the viciousness or bloodletting, when a white extremist, usually also religious, goes on a terror rampage, “it’s just different” than when an extremist affiliated with Islam kills people. It is noteworthy that there is nothing but eternal damnation waiting for any Muslim who sheds innocent blood; extremists may claim affiliation with Islam, but they are not adherents of the Muslim faith.
Trump’s omission is not an oversight; it is not only preparing the nation for the White House’s domestic crusade against Islam, it is part of a program meant to allow white extremists to launch terror attacks, usually against Muslims or people of color with impunity. Don’t believe it?
There is a federal program the Trump administration wants drastically altered to absolve white extremist terrorism called “Countering Violent Extremism” (CVE). CVE’s stated aim is “deterring groups or potential lone attackers through community partnerships and educational programs or counter-messaging campaigns in cooperation with companies.” If king Steve Bannon and his vapid meat puppet Donald Trump have their way, CVE will no longer be allowed to target, monitor or investigate evangelical-linked groups “such as white supremacists who have also carried out bombings and shootings in the United States.” The Trump-Bannon goal is deeming Muslims as the only threat to Americans’ lives despite the fact that the contrary is true; a fact that team Trump-Bannon is well aware of.
According to a very well-publicized study released in 2015, American people are seven times more likely to be killed by a right-wing extremist than a Muslim attacker.
“Recent mass shootings in the U.S., like the murder of nine African American worshippers at the historically black Emanuel A.M.E. Church in Charleston in June 2015 and the murder of three people at a Planned Parenthood clinic in Colorado Springs a few months later were committed by white [Christian, not Muslim] men linked to extremist [religious or racist] ideologies.” Or what dirty Don Trump calls the “real Americans” he wants law enforcement and Homeland Security officials to “stop targeting” despite they pose a seven-time greater threat to American citizens’ lives than an extremist claiming affiliation with Islam.
Since just prior to Trump election and still ongoing, there has been a plethora of attacks on Muslims by proud Trump supporters and the media has been woefully remiss to report them; a fact Trump omitted from his attack on the media. Two Muslim women pushing baby strollers in New York were viciously attacked by a woman saying they don’t belong in “her America.” Two Muslim men, including a Imam, were brutally gunned down in New York with hardly a mention by the media. A female airport employee who is a Muslim was savagely attacked by a Trump supporter; simply because “Trump’s here now and he will get rid of all of you.”
Add to those unreported and ‘unlisted’ terror attacks against Muslims by white people the two Islamic mosques that were burned to the ground within a month in Texas. This is Trump’s America and his domestic religious war against Islam is well underway with his ‘citizen warriors’ setting the stage for the attacks under the aegis of Trump.
If the media has been a failure, it has failed to report adequately the attacks against Muslims by white people emboldened by the Trump. However, they have spent an inordinate amount of time covering radicalized Muslim attacks no matter where they occur.
It is likely that even Trump zealots know he is lying about the media trying to help the terrorists by not reporting their crimes against humanity, but like any accomplished propagandist, if Trump repeats the lie long and loud enough, there is a very good chance his domestic religious crusade against Islam may gain some traction and support from the masses, and that is one frightening thought.
**The above commentary is the sole opinion of its author**
Audio engineer and instructor for SAE. Writes op/ed commentary supporting Secular Humanist causes, and exposing suppression of women, the poor, and minorities. An advocate for freedom of religion and particularly, freedom of NO religion.
Born in the South, raised in the Mid-West and California for a well-rounded view of America; it doesn’t look good.
Former minister, lifelong musician, Mahayana Zen-Buddhist.