Behold, a new media talking point is born – apparently the Las Vegas mass murdering shooter Stephen Paddock enjoys, posthumously, white privilege, because everyone calls him a “lone wolf” instead of “terrorist”, which he surely would be called by now if he were a Muslim.
Bayoumi: “We have a double standard in the United States when it comes to talking about terrorism. The label is reserved almost exclusively for when we’re talking about Muslims. Consider Stephen Craig Paddock, the shooter in Sunday’s massacre in Las Vegas. Is he a terrorist? Well, the authorities aren’t calling him one, at least not yet. This is all the more remarkable because Paddock’s actions clearly fit the statutory definition of terrorism in Nevada.”
King: “Paddock, like the majority of mass shooters in this country, was a white American. And that simple fact changes absolutely everything about the way this horrible moment gets discussed in the media and the national discourse: Whiteness, somehow, protects men from being labeled terrorists.”
Beydoun: “Despite the scale of the attack and Paddock’s being armed with more than 10 rifles, Las Vegas Sheriff Joe Lombardo immediately dismissed any ties to terrorism, classifying Paddock, a white male from a rural town 80 miles from Las Vegas, as a “local individual” and a “lone wolf.” We have yet to determine whether Paddock was motivated by anyone or anything, so many are tiptoeing around terms such as “terrorist.” But if Paddock were Muslim, his status as a local individual would be entirely irrelevant, and the motive of “Islamic terrorism” or “jihad” would likely be immediately assumed, even without any evidence.”
I’ll try to be brief, before my eyes completely roll to the back of my head:
1.I’ll take the above gentlemen’s word that people are calling Paddock a “lone wolf”. No, actually I won’t, since I haven’t come across it myself until they mentioned it. A simple Google search of “Stephen Paddock” + “lone wolf” returns 393,000 results; “Stephen Paddock” + “terrorist” 12,500,000. But “the narrative”, so whatever, guys…
2. Even if someone is calling him a “lone wolf” it is because so far, despite the musings of the local sheriff, there is no evidence that he was assisted by anyone. Personally, I will be surprised if Paddock did not have any accomplices, but we’ll wait and see what the investigation turns up.
3. Just about every Islamist terrorist attack in the United States, Canada and Europe over the past few years perpetrated by an individual has been widely described (by the sensitive media outlets) as a “lone wolf” attack, even though the attacks were motivated, inspired, and claimed by ISIS. You can Google it yourself; I’m not going to do all the work for you. I guess all these ISIS lone wolves also enjoyed white privilege. The Arabs, after all, are Caucasian too.
4. Paddock’s actions might fit the Nevada statutory definition of terrorism, but that’s not the definition that anyone outside of the Nevada judicial system uses. Wikipedia (if you are a snob you can use someone else; I’m well aware that there are literally dozens of different definitions of the term) says that “terrorism, in its broadest sense, describes the use of intentionally indiscriminate violence as a means to create terror, or fear, to achieve a political, religious or ideological aim.” We still have no idea what motivated Paddock, and hopefully over the days ahead we will know more, but so far we have no indications he gunned down hundreds of concert-goers in the pursuance of any specific political, religious or ideological aim. If and once we do, I and I’m sure everyone else will be happy to call him a terrorist, whether he turns up to be a Muslim convert as ISIS is claiming, or a white supremacist, or an anti-fa fanatic, or something else entirely.
5. Acts of violence committed by Muslims against civilians are almost automatically labelled “terrorism” (despite the cautioning by the very same sensitive media outlets which prefers to call them “lone wolves”) rightly or wrongly because almost without an exception they turn out to be so. That is they are revealed to be acts of violence in the pursuit of ISIS’s Islamists or Islamo-fascists politico-religious aims. As opposed to the said individuals stabbing, shooting, running over or exploding people on the account of mental illness or because they snapped when McDonalds served them the wrong burger.
Sorry for whitesplaining the reality to you.