The media is putting a spotlight on the Orlando shooter — reporting more about the killer's Afghan background and his pledge to ISIS rather than respecting the victims’ families and grieving the lives that were taken.
After a mass shooting occurs, news outlets tend to make sure that the assailant’s religious affiliation is front and center.
In December, a mass shooting occurred in San Bernardino, California. The attack killed 14 people and the media was quick to lock onto the shooters' possible terrorist affiliations and Muslim background.
However, when Robert Lewis Dear — a white "Christian" man — decided to shoot up a Planned Parenthood, the news cycle finished with him in a matter of days. They barely touched upon his religious affiliations and certainly made no assertion that all Christians should now be considered dangerous and censored for their beliefs.
Similarly, Dionisio Garza III, an ex-army veteran who killed one and injured six at a tire shop over Memorial Day weekend, did not endure such grotesque scrutiny from the press. Media pundits and politicians barely uttered a whimper about Garza, but when they did, merely presented him as a broken hero as opposed to a terrorist.
This discriminatory approach in reporting when it comes to Muslims and acts of violence is a well-documented fact now.
But here’s one more problem: If radical Islam is the cause of a mass murder, why is "radical Christianity" or "radical Judaism" not considered a factor when members of these faiths commit acts of violence?
Every shooting matters and every shooter should be punished for their crimes. But maybe the media should stop trying to vilify a group of people that made up less than 1% of total shooters this year.
The double standards are baffling and, in a lot of instances, Islamophobic.
Banner and thumbnail credit: Reuters, Lucy Nicholson