Friday, September 6, 2019

The mass shooting in Alabama that the country never heard about

If you don't live on the Gulf Coast, chances are you never heard about a violent incident last weekend.

One week ago tonight, a mass shooting occurred in Mobile, Alabama's Ladd-Peebles Stadium. A 17-year old shot nine people, critically injuring several of them. The victims were all between the ages of 15 and 18 and were at the stadium just to see a high school football game. Thankfully, all of the victims survived and police have the alleged shooter in custody.

The local media grimly and responsibly covered the story.

The national media ignored it.

WALA, WKRG, WPMI and all led their morning news with accounts of the crime along with statements from Mobile Police Chief Lawrence Battiste and the Mobile County Public School System.

ABC, CBS, NBC, CNN, MSNBC and Fox News didn't have a peep about it on their morning broadcasts. A few major dailies like the NY Times and Washington Post mentioned it well 'below the fold' on their websites. The usually reliably hysterical Drudge Report was silent.

So, why the hush-hush, mainstream media? Why wasn't there at least 24 hours of gun-grabbers and leftwing nutballs bashing the NRA, trashing Mitch McConnell and railing against President Donald Trump for promoting the evil of the Second Amendment?

Could it be because the alleged shooter wasn't a mentally ill white guy? Wasn't it because this storyline doesn't fit the narrative of the blatant race-baiting culture of today's mass media?

Of course it was.

The alleged shooter is 17-year old Deangelo Parnell. Police say it was this troubled young black male who shot and wounded nine other black teens, thankfully killing none.

He is being charged with nine counts of attempted murder. Although he is only 17, he is being charged as an adult and is being held at Mobile County Metro Jail on $540,000 bond ($60,000 per count).

If Parnell had been a sick middle-aged white guy dealing attempted murder with an AR-15, we would still be hearing all about it. Beto O'Rourke would be at Ladd-Peebles dropping F-bombs. David Hogg would be at University Hospital talking about how this was his eighth time surviving gun nuts attempts to rub him out. There would be daily marches through the streets of Mobile, demanding immediate confiscation of guns from lawful U.S. citizens.

But since Parnell is a black youth and his victims look just like him, his alleged crime ranks only as a screen-crawl footnote. He just becomes another perpetrator of a crime trend that has become a national epidemic. Homicide is the leading cause of death for black males between the ages 15-34, says the CDC. We see it in Baltimore, Chicago, Los Angeles and Washington DC. Now, we're seeing it in South Alabama.

That is ho-hum stuff to the national media. It's boring. People change channels when talking heads use CDC statistics and talk about hard subjects like black-on-black crime. Baltimore is a shithole for a reason, but the media won't talk about it. They think it hurts ratings and that is a real tragedy.

A white guy shooting a lot of people--some of whom are different from him--is something the media uses to divide us. A black guy shooting a lot of people--almost all of whom look like him--is something that the media can't bring themselves to talk about. There's no lever in the Parnell story to pry Americans apart.

The U.S. needs to have a national conversation about the root causes of violence in our communities. We need to talk about why a very small percentage of people contemplate hurting innocents and taking lives.

The U.S. also needs to have a national conversation about how much we let the national news media and popular culture influence our views of one another.

The fact that the national news ignored the shooting in Mobile tells you that they really don't care about your problems until your problems become something they can use against you.

The media needs us at each other's throats. They need us divided, angry, anxious and scared of each other.  That sells cars, legal services and Botox treatments.


Post a Comment

You must have a Google Account to post a comment.

WARNING: Posting on this blog is a privilege. You have no First Amendment rights here. I am the sole, supreme and benevolent dictator. This blog commenting system also has a patented Dumbass Detector. Don't set it off.

Note: Only a member of this blog may post a comment.