It’s not surprising that right-wing media and Steve Bannon in particular have chosen this pivot. The Buffalo shooter’s manifesto is straight out of Tucker Carlson’s broadcasts and that’s not a good look to have. So it’s time to deflect and backpedal.
Here are Carlson’s words, as as reported by the Washington Post
How, precisely, is diversity our strength? Since you’ve made this our new national motto, please be specific as you explain it. Can you think, for example, of other institutions such as, I don’t know, marriage or military units in which the less people have in common, the more cohesive they are?Do you get along better with your neighbors, your co-workers if you can’t understand each other or share no common values? Please be honest as you answer this question.And if diversity is our strength, why is it okay for the rest of us to surrender one of our central rights, freedom of speech, to just a handful of tech monopolies? And by the way, if your ideas are so obviously true, why does anyone who question them need to be shamed, silenced and fired?
Why is diversity said to be our greatest strength? Does anyone even ask why? It is spoken like a mantra and repeated ad infinitum “diversity is our greatest strength, diversity is our greatest strength, diversity is our greatest strength…”. Said throughout the media, spoken by politicians, educators and celebrities. But no one ever seems to give a reason why.
What gives a nation strength? And how does diversity increase that strength? What part of diversity causes this increase in strength? No one can give an answer.
Paradoxically. Fox News makes the argument for diversity. They published this as a statement of corporate policy in their 2017 annual report.
The Company appreciates the importance of valuing and serving a diverse marketplace. Different backgrounds and characteristics, such as race, ethnicity, gender, disability, culture and sexual orientation, bring innovative viewpoints and merit to the creation of our content and products.
You see the position that Fox News is now in and you see why Bannon has to try and do whatever he can do, which is spin conspiracy theory out of the Buffalo tragedy. Here’s what that looks like.
On Bannon today, they are floating around their belief that the Buffalo shooter was professionally trained by someone: “Something’s not right here .. You believe that this young man (‘thug’ if black) had to be trained? Yeah, 100% .. This kid is extremely well trained.” pic.twitter.com/zp8QMPKZtj
— Ron Filipkowski ?? (@RonFilipkowski) May 16, 2022
This is the world that Rupert Murdoch hath wrought. In pure P.T. Barnum-esque fashion, he most certainly never went broke underestimating the taste of the American public. Au contraire, he became a billionaire doing it. Spin, confuse, deflect, lie and listen to the cash register ring.
And Peyton Gendron, the shooter, is another young man that school authorities were concerned about — a virtual clone of the Wisconsin high school shooter, Ethan Crumbley, the kid that worried the teachers big time.
Gendron made a “generalized threat” while he attended Susquehanna Valley Central High School in June 2021, Buffalo Police Commissioner Joseph Gramaglia said Sunday.–In response to a question from CNN’s Shimon Prokupecz at a Buffalo news conference, Gramaglia said state police brought the student in for a mental health evaluation. After a day and a half, he was released, according to Gramaglia.–The threat was not racially motivated, Gramaglia said.
Sheriff Garcia told CNN Monday the suspect was visited last year by New York State Police after he did a high school project about murder-suicides.–According to Garcia, concerns about alleged mental health issues “were brought to light” after he turned in the post-graduation project.–“The state police arrived at his house at that point last year,” Garcia said. “He stayed at a facility — I’m not sure if it was a hospital or a mental health facility — for a day and a half.”