TIME Columnist: ‘Don’t Ignore Race’ in Oklahoma Murder

-By Warner Todd Huston

TIME columnist John McWhorter has a warning for the media about the murder by three teens–two black and one white–of Australian baseball player Christopher Lane: Don’t pretend the murder wasn’t about race.

In his piece McWhorter points out all the facts that the progressive media want to ignore.

“The numbers don’t lie,” McWhorter notes, “young black men do commit about 50% of the murders in the U.S.”

McWhorter goes on to say that “we don’t yet know whether the attack on Lane was racially motivated,” but he goes on to remind readers that these sort of black on white crimes are all too common and, worse, it is all too common that the progressive media refuses to report on such crimes.

“So, it’s just fake to pretend that the association of young black men with violence comes out of thin air,” McWhorter writes.

“Young black men murder 14 times more than young white men. If the kinds of things I just mentioned were regularly done by whites, it’d be trumpeted as justification for being scared to death of them.”

McWhorter also notes that there is a disconnect in the black community, as well.

And recent example illustrates how many blacks feel about who is murdering whom. Two weeks ago, an NYPD cop killed 14-year-old Shaaliver Douse. Douse was in the process of shooting other people, and had been charged with shooting someone else in May — and yet his aunt compared him to Martin. In her mind, the main sin was the white cop’s.

McWhorter ends his piece with some advice.

For the time being, though, it’s time for the media to stop proudly emblazoning the race of white cops who kill black boys while cagily describing black teens as, say, “from the grittier part of town,” as has been the case regarding Lane’s killers. The media needs to be as honest with black people as we need to be with ourselves. No group gets ahead by turning away from its real problems.

Meanwhile, the progressive media is busy ignoring McWhorter’s warnings.

Since August 21, some in the media have attacked conservatives for bringing up race in the debate about the murder of the Australian baseballer even as news is breaking that one of the accused killers, James Edwards, constantly spewed hate for white people on his Twitter account.

Further, a father of a teen that feared he was going to be the murderous trio’s next victim said that the kids’ attempted murder spree was a gang initiation. James Johnson claimed that the three were trying to join the black street gang rumored to be the Crips.
“The only end of writing is to enable the reader better to enjoy life, or better to endure it.”
–Samuel Johnson

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Warner Todd Huston is a Chicago based freelance writer. He has been writing opinion editorials and social criticism since early 2001 and before that he wrote articles on U.S. history for several small American magazines. His political columns are featured on many websites such as Andrew Breitbart’s BigGovernment.com, BigHollywood.com, and BigJournalism.com, as well as RightWingNews.com, MrConservative.com, CanadaFreePress.com, StoptheACLU.com, Wizbang.com, among many, many others. Mr. Huston is also endlessly amused that one of his articles formed the basis of an article in Germany’s Der Spiegel Magazine in 2008.

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Copyright Publius Forum 2001