Sunday, January 9, 2011

The Incitement Double Standard

by Jonathan S. Tobin

As the political left seeks to use the Arizona tragedy to tar all conservatives with the brush of the murderer, there is another point to remember here. In the past few years, there have been several shootings and terrorists attacks carried out or attempted by American Muslims who were clearly influenced by extremist Islam.

Yet every time such a crime happens, liberals loudly warn us that an examination of the motives of those who carry out such attacks is beyond the pale, since such ruminations might be prejudicial to Muslims, even if the truth is that those crimes were influenced by Islam.

Caution is always advisable when seeking to associate anyone or anything with a violent crime, even though the links between some of these cases of Muslim terrorism and extreme forms of Islam are fairly clear. Yet today there are no such warnings being sounded in the media cautioning Americans not to attribute the actions of an unstable individual to political movements that actually have nothing to do with his crime. Indeed, far from preemptively warning the public not to jump to conclusions, even within the first 24 hours after the assassination took place, we have already had several instances of the left seeking to link this crime with dissent against the policies of President Obama and his Democratic congressional supporters.

It is curious that many of the same media forums, such as the New York Times, that have repeatedly refused even to report, let alone editorialize, about the links between Islamist beliefs and terror are openly seeking to blame the Arizona attack on the Tea Party or anyone else who has had the temerity to question the president, publishing stories that seek to shift the public’s attention from the murderer to Tea Party activists and Republicans, who have nothing to do with this crime. But so deeply ingrained is liberal bias within our mainstream media that no one there seems to understand that there is a double standard at play here.

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Jonathan S. Tobin

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