Politics Magazine

Moral Panics: Police Shootings, Race Riots, and Muslim Terrorism

Posted on the 19 August 2016 by Calvinthedog

Tulio sums it all up so perfectly. These are just vicious circles that endlessly feed back and loop into each other like a dog chasing its tail. One wonders what the solution is. Provocation, revenge attacks, revenge attacks for the revenge attacks, jumpy cops, belligerent suspects, and worst of all, increasingly frightened and angry people looking for more revenge, paybacks and pre-emptive reactions, it just goes on and on.

Hatfields and McCoys.

Tulio: The Black man shot in Milwaukee was shot by a Black cop. Which makes this race rioting all the more bizarre.

This has all been stirred up by the media. When the media focuses on something and starts a narrative, it can lead to a moral panic. Many Black folks, even ones that have never had any violent encounter with the cops, think they are currently under siege. Even if the statistics show that an innocent Black man being killed by cops is more rare than being struck by lightning. Or that 95% of Blacks die at the hand of other Blacks. It doesn’t matter. The news shows it over and over, and it whips them into a frenzy that feeds of itself.

And then people overreact, and there are race riots and retaliatory cop killings. And then race relations began a downward spiral. Whites turn on the news and see Blacks tearing stuff up, setting buildings on fire and shooting cops, which makes them more racist. Then Blacks see Whites becoming more racist and say, “See that, they hate us! Just like we said all along!” Cops who now have to deal the possibility of being shot on the job may be even more inclined to have hair-trigger responses with Blacks, which then feeds into the notion that cops are out to get Blacks, and then you just have one big clusterfuck spiraling out of control.

While I’m not a racist or a racial separatist, the separatists do make good points. If we didn’t share the same nation, we wouldn’t have to worry about intractable race problems. Or the differences in behaviors and perceptions that cause race problems. Dividing up the country into racial territories is never going to happen, but I see why some people would be in favor of it as a solution to race problems, and it makes completely sense in a lot of ways.

Peace in a multiracial society can be fragile. Everything can be humming along fine, and all it takes is for someone to get shot by a cop, and all Hell lets loose, and you see that this pent-up resentment was there all along under the shallow skin of a “post-racial” nation (yeah right).

Also, Whites are capable of this moral panic as well. In their case, swap cops for Muslim terrorists. Even though the statistical likelihood of being killed by a Muslim terrorist on any given day is probably even less likely than being innocently murdered by a cop, Americans think they are constantly under siege from terrorists and that terrorism is more prevalent than it actually is in reality. We have a presidential candidate that doesn’t even want Muslims stepping foot on US soil, and a large of America that agrees with him. Even though we’re orders of magnitude more likely to be killed by a homegrown mass shooter.

So to whites, there’s a terrorist hiding behind every tree ready to kill you. To Blacks, the nation is full of racist cops that want to shoot you dead over a broken taillight. And it’s not that there aren’t terrorists, or that there aren’t cops with an itchy trigger finger and racial biases. It’s that these scenarios are wildly exaggerated by the media, and 99.9% of the Muslims living in America aren’t bothering anyone. And 99.9% of cops will never shoot an unarmed man that isn’t threatening anyone. But the news will keep harping on the .01% exceptions and brainwash people into thinking it’s the norm by running a narrative. And most people are too dumbed down and gullible to question it.


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