I mostly concur with John’s thoughts about today’s shooting at the Family Research Council. However, I find more merit than John does in criticism of the MSM’s reticence about the incident.
It is instructive, I believe, to compare that reticence regarding this patently partisan political shooting in the offices of a conservative organization to the noisy, reckless, anti-conservative approach the MSM has taken in instances where there was no sound basis for suspecting political partisanship, e.g., the shootings in Tuscon and Aurora. Today, as Mary Katharine Ham notes:
CNN managed to stay away from the story entirely for more than two hours despite the fact that FRC’s offices are less than a mile from their D.C. bureau. The Huffington Post‘s afternoon e-mailed Capitol Hill report mentioned nary a word about the shooting. The Washington Post noted the suspected shooter “expressed disagreement” with the organization’s positions. . . .
To illustrate the double standard, all you have to do is replace one letter of this story. FRC becomes HRC, the Human Rights Campaign. Please tell me CNN would have missed that story for several hours or that the media would studiously have noted, over and over, that police had no clues as to the motive of the shooter.
Like Mary Katharine, I prefer the approach the MSM took today to its usual rush to partisan judgment. But the double standard is sickening.
I also found it instructive that after his attack failed and he was subdued, today’s shooter, Floyd Corkins, reportedly begged not be shot, saying that his assault was nothing personal, he just had a problem with the FRC’s politics. Apparently, Corkins thought he was entitled to mercy because his politics were pure.
Let me be clear: Corkins alone is to blame for his attack; no culpability of any kind attaches to critics, no matter how vehement, of the FRC. But the notion that violent attacks become more (see hate cirmes) or less culpable by virtue of the political or social opinions behind them is widespread, and implicit in the double standard employed by the media in covering incidents like today’s.