There has been a plethora of fake hate crimes lately, which some politicians hope to exploit.
These recent media hoaxes highlight a rush to judgment, a tendency to assume a story is true because it fits the dominant media template.
One possible explanation for the media's gullibility would be confirmation bias, which is defined as "the tendency to search for, interpret, favor, and recall information in a way that confirms one's preexisting beliefs or hypotheses." The overwhelmingly liberal media tend to embrace stories that confirm their own biases and ignore those that don't.
It’s appropriate for detectives as well; Your bias makes you begin with a conclusion and then fit the evidence to support instead of correctly weighing the evidence equally and going where it takes you. That’s the scientific method.
These rush-to-smear incidents have been increasingly common, and my problem is that not only is the media too quick to assume the worst, but also that retractions receive little or no press after the truth is discovered.
Two recent cases illustrate media bias: the Covington, Ken., high school kids actually were not racists, and Jussie Smollett’s attackers were allegedly part of a hoax initiated by Smollett himself.
The MAGA hat-wearing Covington kids were a made-to-order hate group. Outraged journalists, celebrities, liberal politicians, etc. easily believed the kids were the attackers, clouded by their own anti-Trump bias and assumptions on who the attackers and who the victims are in America.
The media completely, and I assert willfully, misrepresented the Covington Catholic school-Native American march incident.
When TV star Jussie Smollett claimed to be the victim of a racist anti-gay attack at the hands of two Trump supporters, virtually the entire news media and a parade of politicians immediately believed him and demanded the rest of us do so as well.
The Smollett story had everything for a national media that long ago gave up the pretense of gathering news. Journalism is now explicitly a political job, the point of which is to enforce cultural orthodoxies and punish enemies.
Jussie Smollett was the perfect vehicle for both of those things.
Journalists pretended to be horrified as they recounted what he said happened to him, but secretly, they were thrilled.
Liz Plank, host of Vox Media’s “Consider It,” just knew President Trump had something to do with the attack.
“We don't know what happened to Jussie, but what we do know is that racism is alive and well in this country,” Plank said. “There is real evidence of people who have done these crimes, who cite that the President has inspired them.”
The Duke Lacrosse team’s alleged rape incident in 2006 set the stage for this, and the Brett Kavanagh Supreme Court hearings perpetuate it.
One of the takeaway’s of the Duke Lacrosse hoax posited that, “There was this palpable yearning among the liberal establishment for guilty white people they could put on trial.” How’s the Covington kids’ case any different? Of course, tack on the fact these kids came to Washington for a pro-life rally? Someone should just string them up right now.
Remember this one? In November 2016 a Muslim student at the University of Louisiana at Lafayette (ULL) alleged that her hijab and wallet were stolen by two white Trump supporters who were shouting racial slurs.
The woman’s accusation incensed leftists and Muslims across the nation and the world, prompting the ACLU of Louisiana to issue a statement denouncing both the incident and, of course, Donald Trump. The investigation into the incident involved several law enforcement agencies, including the FBI. The Washington Post, New York Times and CNN, meanwhile, ate the story up.
But what happened to this student’s story under tough police questioning? Well, she eventually broke down and admitted to police that she had fabricated the entire thing. By that time, of course, the media wasn’t too interested in such an innocuous little detail.
Many commentators are now convinced the media-in lockstep-knew the Jesse Smollett story was bogus from the start but pushed it anyway because it fit the anti-Trump and his bigoted supporters narrative. Who honestly ever believed gangs of MAGA hatted thugs were roaming Chicago looking for victims?
The long term consequences of these fake hate crimes is they stir up passions and influence both voting and policy-making in our victim-oriented society, and they deflect justified criticism. Thus, the "victim" is transformed into the victor, and society becomes fairer. Is that justice if it’s initiated by a lie?
Stoking race hatred ensures energizes for the Democratic Party. Divided populations are easier to manipulate and rule. There would be no Democratic coalition without racial animosity. It is what holds their constituencies together. That is the point of identity politics. It is why they are forever reopening the wound.
But the cost to the country has been high. Hate hoaxes make ethnic groups fear and distrust each other. That is a dangerous thing to do in a country that is becoming more diverse by the day.
Here’s a list of manufactured hate crimes during the Trump era. It’s a long list.