After the attack on Andy Ngo by the fascistic “Anti-Fascist” group known more popularly as “Antifa,” I waited to see how the mainstream media would treat it, and not surprising anyone who was watching the media for the same reason, it took the very predictable route of “yes, violence is bad, but was it as bad as they say it was?”
I listed in my article a few examples of how the media was handling it, noting the flippancy with which they treated the Ngo attack. I wasn’t the only one. The Federalist, Daily Caller, Washington Examiner, and more weighed in on the media’s reactions utilizing various sources that diverged and intersected between each article.
However, it wasn’t enough for Peter Beinart at The Atlantic. According to him, these examples aren’t really evidence that the media was actually running defense for Antifa, and more or less every person quoted had condemned the attack.
Beinart reached out to me on Twitter and in a direct message asked me to elaborate, letting me know that he was writing a piece covering the right’s take on the media’s coverage of Antifa’s attack on Ngo. He turned around and used my quote in an article accusing the right of “conjuring up liberal support for Antifa violence.”
Only he didn’t use my full quote.
I won’t speak for other right-leaning outlets and writers, but I get the impression their points were hovering around the same as the point I made to Beinart in a private message, and it’s the point he failed to use.
What Beinart wrote was:
“Media Matters, CNN, Mother Jones, and NYT all seemed to question the validity of the quick dry concrete in the milkshake reports by police,” he wrote in a Twitter message to me. He added, “Instead of immediately condemning Antifa for what they did,” these outlets “cast doubt on different aspects.”
What I told him was:
“Media Matters, CNN, Mother Jones, and NYT all seemed to question the validity of the quick dry concrete in the milkshake reports by police. CNN set up Ngo’s attack by saying that he “says he was assaulted” despite there being video footage of it. Instead of immediately condemning Antifa for what they did, they cast doubt on different aspects. This is the same media that was ready to believe and exaggerate a claim that a Catholic kid in a MAGA hat was a major racist despite a two hour video being available to prove he wasn’t, or that a Supreme Court nominee had committed acts of sexual assault despite mounds of evidence to the contrary.”
Not surprisingly, Beinart left that second part out.
Perhaps the point in my article wasn’t clear enough, though I don’t see how it couldn’t be. I’ll elaborate here just so that my leftist counterparts in the media — Beinart included — can understand.
The left wastes almost no time in grandstanding when injustices and crises occur when it comes to various issues.
Upon a mass shooting, the left immediately launches into doing everything it can to blame the gun and not the person wielding it, as if the gun convinced the shooter to undertake the act. They pull out cherry-picked statistics while firing off asinine claims about gun owners.
If a high-profile sexual assault case arises, the left immediately assumes the man being charged is guilty without waiting for the evidence. They chant “believe all women” while denigrating men by blanket blaming them as potential rapists-in-waiting with Twitter hashtags like “yes all men,” and suggest we need to “teach men not to rape” as if we’re all idiots who didn’t know that already.
Last I checked, the left was perfectly willing to impeach Trump over imagined crimes that they just know he committed despite being cleared of all charges. This after a few years of jumping on every claim and hint that Trump had actually colluded with Russians and obstructed justice, with every lead falling flat.
People like Steven Crowder are racist according to the left, despite the fact that they can’t produce one solid piece of evidence that he is. However, a claim by one man with a grudge is enough proof to punish not only Crowder but go scorched-Earth on the entire website of YouTube in order to make sure anything resembling racism or homophobia is silenced or at least reduced.
I could go on, but I think you understand the pattern at this point.
The left is willing to go whole-hog at anything that could help a narrative of theirs thrive, even with proof to the contrary readily available. Leaping before they look is a habit to the point of being a rule. It appears very often that the thinking is “lie now, and when the truth catches up later no one will care.” They’re not wrong either. The corrections they make are oftentimes way less circulated than their initial claim.
However, with Antifa, they suddenly want to switch on their skepticism and proceed with caution. They doubt police reports and even fail to mention the group at all in various reports about the incident. They even make excuses for the violence, saying that Ngo was essentially asking for it by being there. If this was said about a sexual assault victim, the left would lose its mind, and fair enough. However, the hypocrisy here can’t be overlooked. Ngo shouldn’t have been assaulted period, and it doesn’t matter why.
This is running defense for the violence of the left whether the left likes to admit it or not. It’s hypocrisy on full display and despite the fact that they condemned the violence, it feels shallow because condemning violence and then turning around and trying to make excuses for it doesn’t particularly make it seem like you actually care about the violence.
The differences between coverage of one incident to another is striking. That’s the point that I, and I’m sure many of my compatriots, are trying to get at. The media isn’t attacking this incident of clear-cut violence with the same zeal they would have had the attackers been carrying tiki torches or wearing MAGA hats. In fact, I notice a lot of attacks on people wearing MAGA hats go completely unmentioned by various left-leaning outlets.
Contrary to Beinart’s claims, the right-leaning media didn’t “conjure” anything up. The left’s flippancy is staring us right in the face.