Wednesday, January 06, 2016

The Oregon Standoff, Elite White Media, and Why we are to blame for this

This is my editorial and views, no one else's. Feel free to disagree or agree.

We're moving into the fourth day of an armed occupation of a federal facility by a small group, with reports of 12 to 100 participants, in Oregon. Without any warning this group violently took charge of a Fish & Wildlife stone cottage building with a strong anti-government sentiment. I say sentiment because their cause remains undefined. There has been no list of demands, no clear-cut specific outcome to seek. Instead we've been fed rhetoric and talk about returning Federal Land back to state and local authorities.

To repeat, it's almost 4 days that this group has taken possession of a Federal Building with weapons, and we have yet to see any ending to this standoff between authorities and the perpetrators. We'll get back to that in a bit though.

The National News Media has been slow to take this seriously, to the point that on the night of the occupation, ABC News issued this comment on their Twitter feed (I'm sure many of you know of this):

This happened despite the fact that it was easily known that the protesters were armed with automatic weapons when the forcibly took over a building that wasn't theirs.

Yet as I said, armed occupation of a federal building, by a white, anti-government militia group, but why isn't this the top item in the country on all outlets? This is important and it couples with why we aren't seeing a quicker end to this by the authorities. Why doesn't the media give this the importance it deserves? Why aren't the authorities ending this in a more aggressive manner? Why is there more public and social effort put into mocking the occupiers than denouncing their actions and appealing to the authorities to end this?

Because they are white.

These aren't people with brown or black skin. They speak our language. They were all likely born US Citizens. Yet they are all participating in an act of terror and blackmail. They are all armed. Yet not one shot has been fired.

The media doesn't cover that angle like it should, the authorities ignore this double standard, and the rest of the country watches and does nothing but share meme's and come up with witty and derogatory names for their movement.

Mockery is a great tool in attacking a group or institution or belief, or even an institutions beliefs, so I don't have too much of an issue about the American public calling these guys out.

The problem is that as a society, we aren't going any farther. We aren't calling our leaders and asking them to end this, telling them this isn't something we support or accept. We're not doing the same to every media outlet that skims this issue, treats it unequally, or lazily reports it incorrectly. We're not even calling advertisers of these agencies and websites and voicing our disappointment in them for supporting such disgusting behavior that just reinforces the racist complaints that have become more valid with each high profile incident.

Ultimately this is OUR fault for not standing up and saying, "Give us real information, give us fair and equal action for all citizens, and know that we are not going to accept anything less than that."

No comments: