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July 10 2017

Move Over, CNN: Washington Post Portays Shooting of Republican Congressman as Inspired by Fringe, Right-Wing Radio

by Charlotte Hays

The New York Times tried to tie Sarah Palin to the far left shooter of Republican Rep. Steve Scalise, who remains in serious condition, in an editorial. Now that Palin is suing, the Times lawyer is calling blaming Palin "an honest mistake."

Meanwhile, in another attempt to show that it's never left wing hate speech never creates an atmosphere for violence, the Washington Post has sought to portray the shooter, James Hodgkinson, as an afficianado of right-wing fringe radio in Hodgkinson's hometown:

The nation was shocked, but [radio host Bob Romanik] — who seems to delight in launching savage attacks on local politicians and stoking his listeners’ many frustrations about race, crime and government — certainly wasn’t. Despite being a die-hard supporter of President Trump who has perfected the art of the dire populist message, many of Romanik’s biggest fans in southern Illinois are disgruntled Democrats like Hodgkinson.

“I can’t say for sure if this Hodgkinson guy listened to me, but he probably did,” Romanik said in a recent interview. “If people would be honest about what drove Hodgkinson to the point of violence, you’d probably see a lot of people right on the same page with him all over the country. But around here, for sure.”

Rod Dreher comments:

That’s it. That’s all they have here. The only connection between the left-wing shooter and this repulsive right-wing lunatic who mouths off on a small radio station is the speculation of the host himself.

The Washington Post built an entire story around this — a story that blames right-wing talk radio for a left-wing crackpot opening fire on a baseball field full of Republicans, because they are Republicans.

Let that sink in: the Washington Post blames right-wing talk radio for a left-winger’s assassination attempt on Republican politicians.

The headline of Dreher's post is "Why People Hate the Media, Chapter MDCXIII." This kind of story is one of the reasons. Dreher continues:

Donald Trump doesn’t have to encourage people to hate the media. The media are doing a good job of that on their own. “Democracy dies in darkness” — what self-regarding horses**t! How does a story like this get published? Was there no one in that newsroom who questioned the premise of the piece? How would the media react if the conservative Washington Times blamed Dylann Roof’s massacre of the black churchgoers in Charleston on Black Lives Matter?

Remember the June 2016 massacre of gay clubgoers in Orlando? Killer Omar Mateen was a radical Muslim who pledged allegiance to ISIS in a call from inside the club, where he was in the process of slaughtering dozens. The New York Times reported this on June 12, in a story that also quoted Mateen’s co-workers as saying that he often talked of killing people, and expressed hatred of blacks, Jews, gays, and women.

Dreher quotes a relevant passage in the New York Times absolving Mateen's radical Islamism but blaming us all:

The 49 people killed in Orlando were victims of a terrorist attack. But they also need to be remembered as casualties of a society where hate has deep roots.

Dreher, by the way, is on a roll. He has a sobering post on the bizarre outrage that greeted President Trump's very good speech in Poland ( "Yes, They Really Do Despise Their Civilization"). Dreher quotes examples of this outrage and then concludes:

I’m sorry, duckies, but how is this all that controversial? An American president, standing in the capital of a nation that suffered in the last century the domination of two tyrannies — Nazi and Communist — that tried to eradicate its culture, a nation whose Catholic faith kept its spirit alive and led to its rebirth — proclaims that there are things unique and valuable about Western civilization, and that we should remember those things, affirm them, and defend them.

The shocking thing here is that this is controversial at all. It shows how decadent we have become.

The Washington Post's story shows how decadent one of our most self-regarding institutions has become. It used to be that you could wade through the mainstream media's biases to get basic information. Reporters at the Washington Post once knew that this would have been insufficient reporting.

But mainstream media has gone so far off the rails that we can't even depend on them for facts now.

Independent Women’s Forum’s mission is to improve the lives of Americans by increasing the number of women who value free markets and personal liberty. Sister organization of Independent Women’s Voice.
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