All the News that Fit the Smear: How the Media Shapes Your Reality

Imagine yourself walking at night along a dark city street. You know things are happening around you – people walking, cars zooming by, restaurants serving customers. But you cannot see any of it, because it is dark. Now imagine there is a car driving behind you with a big projector. It starts to shine the light on certain things, and they become visible to you. For example, the projector is now shining on a homeless person standing on the corner. You can see him clearly, and you think the street is full of homeless people. But it’s not. The street may be actually filled with restaurants, and well-off people are sitting along the street enjoying their food and their wine. There may be a high-end shopping mall on the street, and people are shopping. But you cannot see any of it, because the projector is only shining the light on a homeless person. It is not illuminating anything else on the street, so the only thing you see is that homeless person.

Now imagine that this big dark street is the world around you. Things are happening in it constantly, but the only way for you to know they are happening is to learn it from the media. If the media didn’t report things to you, you wouldn’t know about them. Your world is your big dark street, and the media is a big projector driving behind you and shining the light on things they, the media, think you should know. They don’t shine the light on everything, mind you. They pick and choose what they spotlight for you.

After the terrible shooting in Atlanta, at Asian massage parlors,  the media brought our attention to the spike in anti-Asian crimes. The analysis released in March by the Center for the Study of Hate and Extremism at California State University, San Bernardino, examined hate crimes in 16 of America’s largest cities. It revealed that while such crimes in 2020 decreased overall by 7 percent, those targeting Asian people rose by nearly 150 percent.

American media consumers were immersed in 24/7 coverage of terrible plight the Asians suffered in America.  This story was publicized and promoted ad nauseum by every major media outlet: CNN, New York Times, Washington Post, FOX – to name a few.

What was desperately missing in all of these news reports, as always, was context. The Asian population of the US is 20.4 million people in total, which amounts to almost 6% of the US population. The number of anti-Asian hate crimes reported rose from 49 to 122 last year, according to the report. While the number indeed constitutes a significant rise, I think reasonable people can agree that 122 incidents are not a huge epidemic of anti-Asian crimes that justifies hysterical media obsession.

In comparison, Anti Defamation League reported 2,107 anti-Semitic incidents in 2019 (the latest available data). The FBI recorded 953 hate crimes against Jews in 2019. 60.3% of all religiously motivated hate crimes were perpetrated against Jews, making them the most likely subject of hate crimes in the US.

Jewish Americans amount to only 2.4% of the US population. Only between 5.7 million and 10 million Jewish people are living in the US. I think that the persistently increasing rate of anti-Semitic incidents points to a much bigger problem, and it warrants a lot more attention than the anti-Asian “crime spike” that did not produce a lot of crimes. Why doesn’t it?

The answer is simple: “China Virus.” The media narrative of the day is “Donald Trump caused the spike in anti-Asian crimes by using the term ‘China Virus’”. And American media never misses an opportunity to blame Donald Trump for a crime against humanity – even if the crime is not real and/or does not have any connection to anything Donald Trump said or did.

It must be said that before the media found a way to connect President Trump to anti-Asian sentiments, they did not consider Asian Americans to be a victimized group in any way. In fact, because Asian Americans make the most successful US demographic, they were always considered “a privileged group.” American elites considered Asian Americans so privileged that:

  • Asians were the least likely ethnic group to be promoted to management.
  • Admissions in Yale and Harvard heavily discriminate against Asian Americans.
  • An advanced program for high-performing students at Boston Public Schools was suspended after district officials determined the program would not promote “antiracism” due to the disproportionate number of Asian and white students.
  • One of the highest achieving high schools in the country – San Francisco Lowell high school – recently dropped their merit-based admission system due to the “disproportionate number of Asians” doing well on the tests.

Further examining the latter case, one school board commissioner, Alison Collins, has called merit-based admissions “racist:”

Meritocracy based on standardized testing — I’m just gonna say it, in this day and age, we cannot mince words — those are racist systems. If you’re gonna say that merit is, like, fair, it’s the antithesis of fair and it’s the antithesis of just.”

“You can’t use equity or you can’t, you know, talk about social justice and then say that you want to have a selective school that keeps certain kids out from the neighborhoods that you think are dangerous,” she continued. “Like, that’s all kind of Trumpian language.”

It is easy to see how a person who repeats the words “gonna”, “like”, and “you know” multiple times in a three-sentence tirade finds “meritocracy” racist. It is not so easy to see how she rose to become a school board commissioner and is now in control of educating San Francisco children.

Do you know what Alison Collins does not consider racist? This:

Is American media interested in investigating the connection between people like Alison Collins and the rise in anti-Asian attacks by black Americans in Bay Area? Don’t count on it. If the story does not fit the media narrative of blaming Donald Trump for all the bad things that happened in America in the last four years, it is not worth their time. Additionally, it is not only California where you see a rise where blacks are the perpetrators, it is common across the country when you look at Asian Hate crime stats, see here and here.

“Behind most major political stories in the modern era, there is an agenda; an effort by opposition researchers, spin doctors, and outside interests to destroy an idea or a person. The tactic they use is The Smear. Every day, Americans are influenced by The Smear without knowing it. Paid forces cleverly shape virtually every image you cross. The trick of The Smear is that it is often based on some shred of truth, but these media-driven “hit pieces” are designed to obscure the truth. 

Regardless of the accuracy, the themes get repeated until they become accepted by many as the truth.  Sophisticated operatives work behind the scenes to establish narratives, manipulate journalists, and shape the images you see every day.  Nothing is by accident.” –Sharyl Attkisson, The Smear

Note to self-start carrying a flashlight to assist with performing due diligence and illuminate beyond the mainstream media’s projector.

 RWR original article syndication source.

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Written by Tatyana Larina

Tatyana Larina comes from my favorite work of poetry.  And that's the only time you'll see me quoting Wikipedia as a source.

I came to the US in 1991, lived in San Francisco for 5 years, and I have a Computer Science degree.  I worked in software industry for several years, later switching to a career of a full time mom, and I never looked back.

In my younger days, I wasn’t a conservative. That is not to say that I was ever a liberal – I was not anything at all. I had no idea that there were such concepts as “conservative” and “liberal”. I did not pay attention to politics at all, and the most political knowledge you would get out of me would be who the US President was, and even for that you had to catch me on the right day.
My first introduction to politics was during the second Israeli intifada in 2002. Unspeakable violence erupted in Israel. Every day dozens of people were killed. Even though I didn’t follow politics, that deeply affected me. I felt sad, frustrated, and powerless. And one night, I happened to stumble on an MSNBC program called “Alan Keyes is making sense.” He was talking passionately about Israel and the violence, and he addressed my feelings very well.  Since that evening, I turned on Alan Keyes every night, and by his commentary he was able to take away some of the frustration and anger that I had. It was like a nightly therapy session.
Feeling intrigued after watching Alan Keyes, I wondered what else MSNBC had in store. I switched through the channels, and low and behold, I found Scarborough Country. Right off, Joe Scarborough wasn’t what he is today at all. He was a solid conservative (as I now understand), making common sense conservative points. I found him interesting and engaging. Opposing liberalism had not entered my mind at that time. I still didn’t know anything about liberalism. It was just the things he said sounded very common sense and worthwhile to me. Imagine that at some point, MSNBC had a conservative host on the air. Crazy times, ha?
Exploring my new political universe, I switched through more channels, and one night I found FOX. O’Reilly Factor was on. From the very first night, I was hooked. I abandoned Scarborough. O’Reilly was not just common sense – he was aggressive, and he was a fighter. He was Scarborough on steroids. He wasn’t just talking – he was taking on what he thought to be wrong and unjust. Ever since the first time, and until untimely end of Bill’s FOX career, I don’t think I ever missed one Factor.
For forming my political views, and my ability to formulate them, I have to give special credit to three people: Charles Krauthammer, Bill O’Reilly, and Greg Guttfeld.  To Charles - philosophy.  To Bill - realistic and pragmatic approach to politics.  To Greg - realization that a good joke will change more minds than a long lecture.
And for everything else, thanks to my family.

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