Anytime there’s a high-profile tragedy in this country, we can count on the mainstream media to 1) become hysterical; 2) demand that law-abiding citizens be stripped of their rights; and 3) ignore the real issue.
That’s certainly what happened back in December, following the school shooting in Newtown, Conn. If you’d just paid attention to the MSM, you would have thought that school shootings constitute an epidemic in this country; that they’re all perpetrated by card-carrying members of the NRA; and that the only way to avoid them in the future is by repealing the Second Amendment.
The truth is that, for all the publicity they get, incidents like Sandy Hook are very rare — which no doubt explains why they attract so much press. In actuality, your kids are roughly 10 times more likely to die in a bus accident on the way to school than they are to be shot and killed while there.
Moreover, no one involved with the NRA had anything to do with that crime, or with any of the high-profile mass shootings that have occurred in the last, well, forever. And none of the “stricter gun control laws” that the MSM has been touting since Sandy Hook would have done anything to prevent the shootings.
Now here we are again in the aftermath of the George Zimmerman trial. If you listen to the talking heads in the MSM — or to the Attorney General or the President of the United States — you might get the impression that the not-guilty verdict was tantamount to declaring open season on black teenagers. Or that “Stand Your Ground” laws are inherently racist, an excuse for white people to kill black people.
Talk about hysteria. George Zimmerman’s tragic killing of Trayvon Martin, justified or not, was newsworthy precisely because such things rarely happen. Statistics show that the overwhelming majority of black victims die at the hands of black assailants.
Moreover, the Tampa Bay Times reported that although black people make up just 16 percent of Florida’s population, they account for a third of all “Stand Your Ground” claims in the state. Zimmerman’s lawyers, in contrast, never even invoked Stand Your Ground, relying instead on simple self-defense.
Instead of blaming the NRA or racism or SYG or some other straw man, it’s time we address the real root cause of violence in the black community and elsewhere: a youth culture, in the form of “gangsta” rap, shoot’em-up movies, and “first-person shooter” video games, that rejects authority and cheapens human life while glorifying murder, mayhem, drug abuse, gang membership, general thuggery, misogyny and assorted other anti-social behaviors.
It doesn’t help that our president ostentatiously hob-nobs with the very media moguls who profit from such destruction. But the more adults we have in every community who are willing to stand up and denounce this culture of violence, the sooner the casualty rates will begin to decline.
Rob Jenkins is a local freelance writer and author of “Family Man: The Art of Surviving Domestic Tranquility,” available at Books for Less in Buford and on Amazon. Email Rob at firstname.lastname@example.org or visit familymanthebook.com.