In the wake of singer Christina Grimmie's tragic and senseless murder, I came across a random tweet. Paraphrasing it, it goes like this:
Muslim killer - 7 days before name is released. Black killer - 3 days before name is released. White killer - name released immediately.
The source of the tweet is, of course, a white guy. Most probably complaining to the void about how unfair it is for white folks, how they are singled out when other peoples' identities are protected for as long as possible, when in reality, it's the other way around. And after half a day has gone by, I still find the tweet disturbing.
First off, it's scary how freedom to own and carry guns in America has led to all these senseless killings. The victims are mostly children and young adults. So much potential, lost. So much life, taken too early.
Here's the thing: by naming the perpetrator immediately, by giving him a face, the media absolves everyone else from his crime. I'm not surprised if within these few days, terms like 'mentally unstable' and 'lone wolf' and 'disturbed individual' will come into play. All of these are excuses to mask the terror that has taken place.
The reason why it takes much longer to name a Muslim murderer is because the longer the term 'Muslim' is broadcasted, the bigger the suspicion toward Muslims in general. The bigger the suspicion, the easier it is to rally people against a common enemy. Not an individual who may or may not be mentally unstable and disturbed, but entire communities of the particular Faith.
Rule by fear. That's powerful stuff right there.
Sheep are terrified of shepherd dogs. They move as a unit wherever the dogs round them up. We are such lambs. Baa.
How are these acts of unforgivable violence by white people not an act of terror? Why is a rapist protected behind the term college athlete, and his act of violence called sexual assault instead of rape? Why are mass murderers protected behind the terms 'lone wolf' and 'mentally disturbed'?
When did the world decide that the whites are a supreme race?
The sad thing is, even in Malaysia, we have the same problem. Malay supremacy. The privileged race. A delusion, no more than that, but still. Who decides which race is superior over others?
With wordplays, they package stories for the masses. With well-worded headlines, they control how the public thinks. Those who control the media shape how the world thinks.
It's disturbing how powerful words are.