Here’s another one for your “what if the ideology were reversed” file.
Two seemingly separate items on today’s Providence Journal opinion page have a telling connection if your morning news stream looks like mine. The first is the top-of-page political cartoon by Dave Granlund. It shows some vultures saying, “We’re the other responders,” and holding a newspaper with headlines of people taking advantage of the victims and the destruction.
The second is a letter from Michael Hayes of East Greenwich who wants to know why, if events in Charlottesville merited four days of spontaneous front page coverage on the Providence Journal, a wave of even-more-deadly police shootings didn’t deserve the same treatment:
I wonder if anyone remembers the Black Lives Matter marches and the chants of “What do we want? Dead cops. When do we want it? Now.” I guess those words were not “disgraceful” and “shameful.”
Where were the headlines “WAR ON POLICE CONTINUES” or those telling us that our Rhode Island leaders were “sickened” over the killing of police officers?
The story that connects these two items comes courtesy of left-wing activist Linda Sarsour, who has had a high profile with “The Resistance,” offering the news media an opportunity for photos of a hijab-wearing radical. Sarsour’s response to Hurricane Harvey’s devastation was to promote a left-wing community organizing PAC under the title of “Hurricane Relief Fund.” Called on the scheme, Sarsour could only draw the fine distinction that it wasn’t her PAC and accuse people of being white supremacists.
So, what do you think? If some prominent right winger were out there telling people that a donation to a conservative PAC in Texas was “hurricane relief,” would that be transformed into a national story?
Even if you wouldn’t go that far, the letter to the editor and the Sarsour story provide a reminder that we can’t rely on mainstream news outlets to keep us informed about what’s going on in the world would have a distorted view.