Representative Steve Scalise nearly died while playing baseball. Shot by a Bernie Sanders supporter, Scalise is a victim. Nothing more. The idea that some on the left have of taking his voting record into consideration as a means of “discussing” the shooting is the worst kind of politics.
Conservatives are often chastised for their distrust of the media, claiming there is no bias against them. However, time and time again the media does something that lends credibility to the conservative accusation of bias, and CBS is the just the latest perpetrator.
Scott Pelley closed out the CBS evening news with some commentary about the shooting of Steve Scalise and others at a baseball practice. Watch the video below and listen carefully to what Pelley says in the first 10 seconds:
It’s time to ask whether the attack on the United States Congress yesterday was foreseeable, predictable, to some degree, self-inflicted
First of all, the attack was not on the “United States Congress.” The shooter specifically targeted Republicans in Congress. Secondly, the notion that Scalise brought it on himself in any way is a horrible thing to say, and Pelley should be embarrassed for even suggesting it.
“How is this a question of bias?” one might ask, right?
Because there is not a chance Pelley would ask that question if the shooter was a Trump supporter and he shot Democrats. Anybody who says otherwise is not being honest. Retake a step to 2011 when Jared Loughner shot Gabby Giffords. The media at that time rushed out reports she was dead:
In the clamor to break news get on the air, CNN, Fox News, and National Public Radio all declared Giffords dead at one point. So did my former newspaper, The Washington Post. And, following their lead, so did many websites, including The Daily Beast.
“We have one very reliable source on Capitol Hill confirming that Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords has died,” a Fox anchor said.
“CNN has confirmed, as you see, that the congresswoman has been killed,” a CNN anchor said.
What was the great rush? Had Giffords died, we would have gotten the official confirmation soon enough.
It wasn’t the only example of media malfeasance at the time. Before we knew of any motive on the part of Jared Loughner, the media were quick to blame “political rhetoric” for the shooting.
The New Republic: Gabrielle Giffords and the danger of violent rhetoric.
USA Today: Gabrielle Giffords shooting fuels debate over rhetoric
NPR: Shooting Fallout: Political Rhetoric Takes The Heat
Christian Science Monitor: Vitriol in political rhetoric: Did it play a part in the Arizona shooting?
CNN: Weight of words in focus after Arizona shooting
The Guardian: Gabrielle Giffords shooting reignites row over rightwing rhetoric in US
Finding these examples took no more than three minutes of time. Search them and see for yourself. Do you know what you will not find at all from the media in the wake of Giffords shooting? A question of whether or not her being shot was “self-inflicted.”
It’s why conservative skepticism of the mainstream media is well-founded.