When The Media Has Failed Us
Start writing a post
Politics and Activism

When The Media Has Failed Us

Race Privilege In The Media

18
When The Media Has Failed Us

In the last decade there have been over 200 mass shootings in America[1], bringing up the question as to whether or not citizens are safe in schools, malls, and anywhere in the general public. But who exactly are the people behind these mass killings? It is certainly not any form of the Islamic terrorism that 52% of the U.S. population says they are “afraid” of [2]. Instead, most shootings in public spaces are a result of white upper-middle class men, but those acts aren’t deemed terrorism by the media. But why are these killers exempt from the highly destructive label immediately stamped on people of color who partake in the same exact horror?

Just mere days ago, 24 year-old Mohammod Youssuf Abdulazeez opened fire in a Tennessee military recruiting facility brutally murdering 5 American servicemen. However, with the motive still unclear, investigators have seen absolutely no connection to any terrorist organizations. With that, attorneys looking into the tragedy as an "act of domestic terrorism"[3] and rightly so because of the sheer senseless inhumanity of it all.

But take a similar shooting spree just week ago by white supremacist Dylann Roof who went into an African-American church and killed 9 people because he wanted to make his statement of supporting the pro-apartheid actions of a country once known as Rhodesia, now Zimbabwe. He proudly bore the Rhodesian flag on clothing that he was photographed wearing. But his actions are only being classified as a hate crime. However, the definition of terrorism is “the use of violence and intimidation in the pursuit of political aims”[4]. And wasn’t Roof explicitly displaying a certain governmental agenda when he decided to wear those flag patches called segregation?

So why isn’t this being called terrorism? Simple: because Roof is a white man, and the terms 'terrorist' and 'terrorism' seem to be strictly reserved for people of the Muslim faith. And while many terrorist attacks now-a-days in the Middle East are self-proclaimed ISIS and Al-Qaida deeds, the ones that occur at home should be seen as the same no matter what the race or income class of the perpetrator. It is not fair to force stereotypes of violence on groups of over 1 billion people, but when people such as James Holmes from the Aurora shootings, Adam Lanza from the Sandy Hook shootings, Dylann Roof, etc., commit real violence, to not see them as terrorists. Why do we give a person of the Muslim faith this death mark when others have done the same exact crime have not been so villianized?

The media must stop separating relevant cases into different categories when they are perpetrated by people with particular ethnicities and beliefs. Only then can we get to the root of the mass shooting problem that our country faces currently.


[1] http://www.gannett-cdn.com/GDContent/mass-killings...

[2] http://www.gallup.com/poll/157082/islamophobia-und...

[3] http://www.cnn.com/2015/07/18/us/tennessee-naval-r...

[4] http://www.oxforddictionaries.com/us/definition/am...

Report this Content
This article has not been reviewed by Odyssey HQ and solely reflects the ideas and opinions of the creator.
the beatles
Wikipedia Commons

For as long as I can remember, I have been listening to The Beatles. Every year, my mom would appropriately blast “Birthday” on anyone’s birthday. I knew all of the words to “Back In The U.S.S.R” by the time I was 5 (Even though I had no idea what or where the U.S.S.R was). I grew up with John, Paul, George, and Ringo instead Justin, JC, Joey, Chris and Lance (I had to google N*SYNC to remember their names). The highlight of my short life was Paul McCartney in concert twice. I’m not someone to “fangirl” but those days I fangirled hard. The music of The Beatles has gotten me through everything. Their songs have brought me more joy, peace, and comfort. I can listen to them in any situation and find what I need. Here are the best lyrics from The Beatles for every and any occasion.

Keep Reading...Show less
Being Invisible The Best Super Power

The best superpower ever? Being invisible of course. Imagine just being able to go from seen to unseen on a dime. Who wouldn't want to have the opportunity to be invisible? Superman and Batman have nothing on being invisible with their superhero abilities. Here are some things that you could do while being invisible, because being invisible can benefit your social life too.

Keep Reading...Show less
Featured

19 Lessons I'll Never Forget from Growing Up In a Small Town

There have been many lessons learned.

76039
houses under green sky
Photo by Alev Takil on Unsplash

Small towns certainly have their pros and cons. Many people who grow up in small towns find themselves counting the days until they get to escape their roots and plant new ones in bigger, "better" places. And that's fine. I'd be lying if I said I hadn't thought those same thoughts before too. We all have, but they say it's important to remember where you came from. When I think about where I come from, I can't help having an overwhelming feeling of gratitude for my roots. Being from a small town has taught me so many important lessons that I will carry with me for the rest of my life.

Keep Reading...Show less
​a woman sitting at a table having a coffee
nappy.co

I can't say "thank you" enough to express how grateful I am for you coming into my life. You have made such a huge impact on my life. I would not be the person I am today without you and I know that you will keep inspiring me to become an even better version of myself.

Keep Reading...Show less
Student Life

Waitlisted for a College Class? Here's What to Do!

Dealing with the inevitable realities of college life.

141809
college students waiting in a long line in the hallway
StableDiffusion

Course registration at college can be a big hassle and is almost never talked about. Classes you want to take fill up before you get a chance to register. You might change your mind about a class you want to take and must struggle to find another class to fit in the same time period. You also have to make sure no classes clash by time. Like I said, it's a big hassle.

This semester, I was waitlisted for two classes. Most people in this situation, especially first years, freak out because they don't know what to do. Here is what you should do when this happens.

Keep Reading...Show less

Subscribe to Our Newsletter

Facebook Comments