In an obvious attempt at deflection, The New York Times downplays the environmentalist views of El Paso shooter Patrick Crusius and even lumps him in with other white racist mass shooters, such as Pittsburgh synagogue shooter Robert Bowers and, not surprisingly, states he copies President Trump’s rhetoric. The Times does this while ignoring the main thrust of the El Paso shooter’s beliefs which draws from or is based the on the essay by New Zealand mosque shooter Brenton Tarrant.
The Times mostly focuses on Crusius’s anti-immigrant statements and merely touches on his environmentalism by saying only this:
“The manifesto that may be linked to Mr. Crusius described an imminent attack and railed against immigrants, saying, “if we can get rid of enough people, then our way of life can be more sustainable.”” (emphasis mine)
Since Crusius tipped his hat to Tarrant in his essay, it is incorrect to put Crisius in with people such as Robert Bowers since even Tarrant said in the Q&A in his screed that he does not hate Jews, and holds no great fear of other people. Tarrant does, however, describe himself as a racist or, more specifically, an ethno-nationalist eco-fascist. I want to emphasize, racism is evil and all three men are, not just for their beliefs, but also what they have done. However, while all are irrational too, the racism of Crusius and Tarrant is very weak when compared to Bowers who was strong and outspoken.
It should also be stressed that Tarrant considered himself to be ideologically on the Left and expressed admiration for Communist China. The Times is notoriously Leftist in its outlook and it is reflected, not only in its editorial pages, but in its news stories too. The reporters who authored this news piece conducted not only sloppy journalism but either they or the editor(s), most likely, had a political agenda when crafting this story. They tried to make Crusius into a hateful, white nationalist while downplaying his and even Brenton Tarrant’s environmentalism. This includes neglecting to reveal both men’s ideology being in the same vain as Norwegian mass shooter Anders Breivik.
If news media is going to report stories like this their journalists have to be as precise and accurate in their reporting as possible. People depend on them to give them the facts, including relaying information those in the news media may not be comfortable with. Neglecting to do so in instances that involve tragic cases (such as mass shootings) also is an injustice to the deceased and can enable copycats like what seems to have happened in Dayton, Ohio.
It also doesn’t help, as Tim Pool has pointed out, that some news media outlets, like Vox, are hiring political activists as journalists in order to produce shock material in order to draw traffic. So even if the Grey Lady hasn’t had that happen to them, unfortunately, the reputation from publications, such as Vox, can rub off on news outlets like The New York Times. In terms of Crusius, Tarrant, and Brevik, all three men are driven by an ideology and have an intelligence capacity to conduct themselves to where they not only can integrate in the urban areas they live, but also mask their intent quite well.
Ultimately, people such as Crusius, Tarrant, and Breivik resemble people that Eric Hoffer decribes in his book The True Believer: Misfits (i.e. miserable social outcasts) who hooked themselves on to a political ideology to give meaning to their lives that the mainstream media claims is an indication of the rise of white extremism in the Era of Trump. If that is the case, then there should have been more mass shootings during the Jim Crow Era and late 1960’s, but there weren’t.
PHOTO CREDIT: A parody of The New York Times front page who apologized for their sloppy reporting of the 2016 election.