A disturbing Facebook Live video of an attack against a white teen with special needs at the hands of black assailants has resulted in four arrests.
The incident has further intensified the ongoing debate over race relations in the United States — a nation already reeling from an uptick in racially and religiously motivated hate crimes after Donald Trump’s victory in last year’s presidential elections.
The video has also given an opportunity to right-wingers and, specifically, right-wing critics of the Black Lives Matter movement, to assail the entire movement, wrongly blaming them for the attack:
White special needs Americans are being kidnapped & tortured. Will Libs scale back their dangerous & hateful rhetoric now? #BLMKidnapping— Amy Mek (@AmyMek) January 5, 2017
You are right. Stand up with me and demand justice in Chicago for the beating of a disabled trump supporter by BLM https://t.co/aP79pKnHA1— Glenn Beck (@glennbeck) January 5, 2017
But the fact of the matter is that the kidnapping has “nothing to do with BLM,” as has been clarified by the group’s Chicago chapter.
And it’s not just the BLM’s own statement. The police have not yet found any evidence whatsoever linking the four perpetrators to the movement.
Therefore, it is also factually incorrect to point fingers at BLM over the Chicago torture video.
A similar pattern of blame was observed in July last year when a black U.S. Army reservist killed five police officers in Dallas. Later, in August, the BLM was held responsible, again, after a black reporter in Virginia shot and killed his two white colleagues on-air.
Both the cases proved to be detrimental to the cause of BLM, a movement that was created in response to systemic — and documented — police brutality against the African-American community.
The Chicago beating was horrific. It was tragic. It was motivated by hate. It should never have happened. However, to tar an entire movement with the same brush due to the actions of four people, who are not even related to the movement, is not just logically incorrect but unjust.
Banner and thumbnail credit: Reuters, Stephanie Keith