In the wake of last night’s grand jury decision not to indict Officer Darren Wilson for the shooting death of unarmed black teenager Michael Brown in Ferguson, Mo., protests quickly devolved into violence and looting as heavily-armed riot cops descended on the scene. It was not a pretty scene, with live images of burned police cars, looted businesses and tear gas-toting SWAT teams airing across the nation.
How did conservative media handle this racially-tinged, volatile situation?
The reaction by prominent conservatives was straight-up vile. Here’s a roundup of the awful coverage hitting right-wing websites and networks, including an untold number of thinly-veiled racial taunts and angry rants about leftist subversion.
Not content to be outdone by CNN’s invitation to George Zimmerman’s lawyer, Fox invited an unabashed racist to provide commentary on Ferguson. Convicted perjurer Mark Fuhrman, the cop who helped botch the O.J. Simpson trial after it was revealed he was fond of calling black suspects the n-word, told Fox’s viewers that the grand jury proceedings were valid. On Tuesday, both Fox and CNN cut off a planned speech by Al Sharpton
In other Faux News coverage, Megyn Kelly deliberately conflated the grand jury proceedings with a criminal trial while Sean Hannity cut off a Democratic guest to accuse her of inflaming racial tensions. Its opinion site, Fox Nation, ran this jarringly insensitive headline accusing black leadership of cowardice:
The Daily Caller
If you ask the nutjobs over at TheDaily Caller, the violence was the fault of police for not cracking down hard enough:
In a breathtaking display of hypocrisy, Alex Jones’ notorious anti-police conspiracy shit-hole mostly took the side of the cops.
It published a number of outright lies, such as that Al Sharpton was “calling for more looting and arson.” Writer Paul Joseph Watson accused Ferguson of ruining libertarians’ fight against police brutality.
The site also cleared up some of its cognitive dissonance by concluding that Ferguson was a “state managed riot,” suggesting that the rioters were just playing into the globalists’ agenda. “Incite the race war and have everyone fight each other while the rich keep going to the bank then back to their gated community,” one commenter wrote. “Effective strategy.”
According to Ben Shapiro of Breitbart, the lying media deliberately fed you bullshit about racism and Michael Brown to ratchet up racial tensions. (Another story reported “heavy automatic gunfire” and “anarchy.”)
Just a few weeks ago, though, Shapiro was on YouTube ranting about “St. Trayvon of the Blessed Hoodie,” and speculating on how implausible it would be that Wilson would have been able to fight back in his vehicle against a “289 pound Brown.” Then, in a profound misunderstanding of what weed is, he suggested that Brown’s system was “chock full of THC” and presented rap songs from Brown’s SoundCloud as evidence the kid was a thug.
Breitbart gave their headline story on Ferguson to a guy who once said “Arabs like to bomb crap and live in open sewage.” Who are the race hustlers, again?
On Tuesday morning, the site was openly proclaiming that the American Left had declared war on the upstanding white community:
“Despite the media’s lies, Ferguson is NOT about black vs. white. It’s about the Left vs. a Civil Society,” the site’s reporters wrote. Later, they called Washington Post reporter Wesley Lowery (who was arrested during the original August protests) a “special snowflake of a reporter” and suggested the mainstream media was deliberately trying to “keep the violence and racial division alive” by lying to viewers.
The National Review
America’s “most widely read and influential” conservative news source unsurprisingly concluded that justice actually was served in Ferguson last night, and demanded local authorities enforce peace.
Columnist Dennis Prager somehow made this all about liberal moral relativism, even managing to tie in abortion. In his view, the violence in Ferguson is symptomatic of liberals’ view of “‘good’ and ‘evil'” as “individual or societal preferences” rather than absolute moral truth. Contributor Deroy Murdock (who is black) wrote that the same “professional” Occupy activists who “turned Zuccotti Park into an open toilet and rape camp” were now destroying Ferguson and should be infiltrated and destroyed by the FBI. Yet another writer, Andrew C. McCarthy, reported that tensions were “irresponsibly stoked by the Obama administration (especially its Justice Department) and other racialists and rabble-rousers.”
The National Review has a long and storied history of championing divisive racial politics in the name of reactionary white people, so the slew of accusations about racialism coming from their corner boggles the mind. If you just strip out the explicitly supremacist parts, founder William F. Buckley’s 1957 defense of Southern segregation would fit right into the publication’s commentary on Ferguson today:
“It is not easy, and it is unpleasant, to adduce statistics evidencing the cultural superiority of White over Negro: but it is a fact that obtrudes, one that cannot be hidden by ever-so-busy egalitarians and anthropologists.
“National Review believes that the South’s premises are correct. It is more important for the community, anywhere in the world, to affirm and live by civilized standards, than to bow to the demands of the numerical majority.”
Senior columnist Jonah Goldberg wrote a surprisingly restrained piece asking for sympathy for Michael Brown’s family, which was met with hundreds of angry, racist comments.
The Drudge Report
Drudge really hand its hands full Monday night. Between mocking the president’s “begging” for calm to proudly proclaiming “CASE CLOSED” as their banner headline, Drudge also found the time to loudly announce that conservatives’ long-awaited “RACE WAR” had arrived.
On Twitter, Matt Drudge suggested that President Obama was willfully blind to the destruction being wrought in Ferguson and promised that the “riots” would escalate.
Finally, on Tuesday the Drudge Report headline story openly gloated over all the people in Ferguson who got beaten last night:
Red State’s resident caveman Erick Erickson decried how the leftist media turned Brown’s death into a whiny political issue …
… just minutes after linking to his post on Red State, which squeals about how “There is a serious problem in the black community and when any white person raises the issue, too many people scream ‘racism.'” Then he accuses young black men of having a victim mentality.
Right Wing News
News writer Matthew Vadum could barely contain his glee that the grand jury’s decision was “infuriating left-wingers,” saying the president bears “direct responsibility for fomenting the combustible situation.”
American Family Association
The notoriously homophobic AFA took the opportunity to harrumph about the moral decay of black America. News director Fred Jackson gave a vile radio rant claiming Brown had a liberal “mentality of entitlement.” Then he said that Brown had paid the “consequences” for defying the “absolute truth … defined by scripture:
“What we’ve been talking about this morning: the existence of absolute truth, and that is what’s under attack today. Absolute truth is defined by scripture, the Bible, God’s word, that’s how it’s defined and when you violate that, there are consequences. Now you may get away with it for a while, for a period, but God says there will be consequences. Both our callers, I think, addressing the crux of the problem here this morning is the family, is the breakdown of the family. When you do not have a dad figure around there is not someone there in authority to demonstrate there are consequences to violating the rules. If you don’t have that presence in the family, you’re going to have problems.”
(Michael Brown does have a dad, who issued a
before the verdict decision.)
Tea Party News Network
TPNN went out of their way to mock a grieving father by laughing at Michael Brown, Sr.’s t-shirt that said “Gone to soon” [sic].
Then there was this irony-blind post:
The racists at WorldNetDaily want you to know what the real story is: All those black people screaming “no snitchin'” and playing the knockout game on innocent whites. Forget dog whistles; this is a police siren.
The rest of the article mockingly suggests that something is causing St. Louis’ black population to experience “strange imbalances in arrests” – hmmm, I wonder what that could be?
As evidence that black people are raving lunatics, WND cited a book called “White Girl Bleed a Lot” on their store, which includes the following gem of a blurb:
Racial violence is back. Along with widespread racial crime – even riots. In hundreds of episodes in more than 80 cities since 2010, groups of black people have been roaming the streets of America – assaulting, intimidating, stalking, threatening, vandalizing, stealing, shooting, stabbing, even raping and killing. In cities big and small. In ways expected and unexpected.
The author, Colin Flaherty, suggested earlier in the evening that Obama should be impeached for his speech on Ferguson.
In his spare time, Flaherty hits the far-right talk circuit talking about how “blacks” are responsible for “rampant racial mob violence.”
I can’t tell whether Coulter is saying that white people are the real victims here or subtly encourage Ferguson’s white population to take to the streets against protesters. I think that’s intentional.
Meanwhile, Ted Nugent has absolutely given up any pretenses of not being an outright racist.
On Facebook, he decried “black klansmen” and told his audience “dont claim that ‘black lives matter’ when you ignore the millions you abort & slaughter each & every day by other blacks.”
Nugent doesn’t need to say the n-word again because you know he’s thinking it.
Fox News’ Laura Ingraham took to Twitter to accuse “hardcore leftists” of trying to undermine society itself.
In case it wasn’t clear, Ingraham doesn’t believe that there were “protestors” present, just “thugs.”
Twitchy knows who the real victim in Ferguson is: Panera Bread.
Twitchy filled its homepage with as many pictures of black people supposedly rioting as possible. I’m sure they think this is real subtle:
Conservative radio host Mark Levin’s reaction was predictably awful.
“Ferguson burns and violence has been unleashed thanks to the reckless liberal media, the lawless administration (especially Eric Holder) exploiting the shooting to smear police departments across the nation, phony civil rights demagogues, race-baiting politicians, and radical hate groups.”
Or, you know, in other words…
Right-wing ex-cop Kerik, who headed the NYPD for former Mayor Rudy Giuliani, took to CNN to use racially-charged terms like “savages” and “animals.”
His former boss is currently defending himself against charges of racism after he accused black folks of killing each other so much that the cops have to suppress their communities.
“Dumbest man on the Internet” Jim Hoft has really been having a field day spreading racial rumors, conspiracy theories and outright lies, as well as demanding to know why Obama prevented Missouri from sending in the national guard to crush the protests.
Hoft also published an incendiary post titled “‘Justice for Mike Brown’ Means Looting Big Screen TVs” and posted this racist joke to his homepage:
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RELATED: The Ferguson grand jury was set up to fail, and so it did.