The shameful silence on the Waukesha massacre

The shameful silence on the Waukesha massacre. By Brendan O’Neill.

Is silence still violence? If it is, then a whole lot of people, from the Hollywood set to the virtue-signalling left, are guilty of some serious violence right now. Their silence on the Waukesha massacre, on the slaughter of six innocents by a man wielding his SUV as a deadly weapon, is deafening.

More than that, it is sinister. Dancing grannies, an eight-year-old boy, people singing and cheering at a Christmas parade, all mown down.

Six killed, 62 injured, in what police are treating as a suspected act of intentional homicide. That is, mass murder.

And yet there’s been nothing from Hollywood stars who normally love to hold forth on terrible acts of violence. Influencers seem to have been struck dumb. There are no blacked-out squares on Instagram. The big woke corporations aren’t pumping out pained, concerned press releases. It’s just tumbleweed, everywhere. …

Where is the anger over this? The social-media solidarity? The woke left’s ferociously tweeted concern about a rising tide of extremist violence? Even here in the UK the left and the Twitterati are able to rattle off the names of the three people shot by Kyle Rittenhouse — even while conveniently forgetting that one of them was a convicted paedophile — but I bet they couldn’t name a single victim of the far larger, seemingly more intentional act of violence carried out in Waukesha. The right-on remember and mourn the horrific killing of one woman by a far-right man who used his car as a weapon in Charlottesville in 2017, and yet already they’re staring awkwardly at the ground, virtually shrugging their shoulders, over the killing of six people by a man using his SUV as a weapon in Waukesha. Is this act of violence less important? Less horrific? Why?

Hint: the murderer’s skin color and motives are sanctified by the left:

The message isn’t subtle:

Yes, the wretched events in Waukesha are being covered in the media. …

But there is unquestionably something missing — the something that always, without fail, follows acts of violence carried out by white nationalists or increasingly, if we’re being frank, white people full stop. What’s missing are the angry talking heads on ‘liberal’ news outlets. The ceaseless tweeting about the scourge of violence in modern-day America. The ostentatious IG posts about the relentless rise of hate in our society. The frenzied efforts to pin the blame for this suspected act of mass murder on a politician or a commentator, on anyone who has ever said something too heated, too allegedly prejudiced. We saw that in relation to Rittenhouse. There was an explosion of it after Charlottesville. But now? All those folks are schtum.

Even the media coverage is radically different to the kind of reporting we see in the wake of other forms of violence. It is passive, treating the massacre almost as a natural disaster. Or as the evil handiwork of the SUV itself. ‘Here’s what we know so far on the sequence of events that led to the Waukesha tragedy caused by [an] SUV’, said the Washington Post. Caused by an SUV. The agency of the suspect is diminished. The problem, it seems, is killer SUVs. We seem to be witnessing in the wake of the Waukesha massacre the same kind of attempted manipulation of the emotional response that we see after acts of Islamist terrorism. It’s sad, regrettable, awful even, but don’t look back in anger. Don’t obsess over it. These things happen. …

It fails the turn-about test:

Imagine if a white man drove a car into a crowd of mostly black Christmas revellers and killed six of them. Imagine if it was discovered that this white man had posted social-media comments saying we should knock black people the fuck out. Imagine if he had dabbled in white-nationalist thought experiments online.

What do you think would be happening right now? It would be the only issue in media and political discussion — and rightly so. The left would galvanise itself. Marches would take place. There would be stern and frequent condemnations from the White House, rather than the quite perfunctory statements it has issued on Waukesha. It would be swiftly institutionalised as a turning-point act in modern America — proof of the existence of white supremacy, proof of the need for all-out change.

Identity politics. The left needs the votes of its adopted identity groups, so it promises them more privileges than you. Apparently, for blacks, that includes some exemptions from laws against shop-lifting, rioting, murdering whites, etc.

The problem here, the cause of this … racially selective outrage is identity politics. …

Identitarianism is now so entrenched as an elite consensus opinion, everywhere from newsrooms to universities, from the radical left to the White House, that these people now even judge the worthiness of victims by their identity and the identity of the person who attacked or killed them.

The killing of six white people by a black man interferes with the identitarian narrative crafted by the woke elites. It muddies what has become the core claim and organising principle of the new establishment — namely, that white supremacy is rife, that white people are a problem, and that black people are victims who require our sympathy, our tears and our knee-taking. …

On the day before the Waukesha massacre, CNN published an article headlined ‘There’s nothing more frightening in America today than an angry white man’. It was all about the problem of white privilege, white violence, the ‘white male id’. I put it to you that if a media outlet had published an article on the scourge of ‘angry black men’, on the arrogance and violence of blacks, and if on the same day someone had attacked a happy gathering of black people, we would not hear the end of it. It would become a global flashpoint of political debate.

But today’s pathologisation of whiteness gets a free pass, and a man who posted anti-white comments before going on to kill a large number of white people a few years later is not subjected to very much media investigation or condemnation.

They’re cool with that. When they said “black lives matter” but violently disagreed that “all lives matter,” they meant it literally. They’re fine with killing whites.