New York magazine published a sickening 4,600-worded love letter to two lawyers arrested for tossing a Molotov cocktail at a police car during a riot in New York City. The publication of this missive perhaps provides the most startling example yet of what we already know: the so-called “mainstream media” does not believe in equal justice under the law.
In the early hours of May 30, Urooj Rahman, a passenger in a vehicle driven by fellow lawyer Colinford Mattis, is alleged to have tossed a homemade gasoline bomb into the open window of an NYPD car. Rahman also “attempted to distribute Molotov cocktails to several other individuals and to incite them to use the Molotov cocktails in the course of the protests,” federal authorities say. If convicted on federal charges, the lawyers each face a mandatory minimum of 45 years in prison.
“During the arrest, officers observed in plain view several precursor items used to build a Molotov cocktail, including a lighter, a Bud Light beer bottle filled with toilet paper and a liquid suspected to be gasoline in the vicinity of the passenger seat and a gasoline tank in the rear of the vehicle,” federal officials stated.
In Defense of Violence
There is only one term for this kind of behavior: terrorism. Yet in the minds of the intellectual poseurs at the left-leaning New York magazine, these were two good but justifiably angry kids who may have gone a bit too far – but for understandable reasons. The idea that well-off, young professional progressives could be charged in the same way that any other American who committed the same act would is an injustice, in the eyes of the posh magazine. It is also proof that these activists, who easily could have killed multiple people with their bombs, are right about the “system” they are waging street war against. Or so these media types appear to believe.
Author Lisa Miller clumsily laces her account with qualifiers such as “friends say” as she relentlessly puts forth a skewed narrative painting Mattis and Rahman as sympathetic, even heroic figures. She suggests that tossing Molotov cocktails at cop cars may be considered a social faux pas but is not that far out of line with accepted modern ethics for progressive lawyers:
“As recently as a few years ago, even a progressive-minded lawyer might have regarded fervent, visible participation in a political protest as professionally unbecoming. Today, some of Mattis and Rahman’s friends may concede in private that throwing a Molotov cocktail represents a lapse in judgment, but none are willing to discuss the degree to which their friends may have been ethically, professionally, morally, or legally out of bounds.”
Incredibly, Miller goes on from there to offer up an apologia for throwing bombs in city streets:
“Instead, [these friends] emphasize that violence against government property, especially in the midst of political upheaval, is not the same as violence against a person; that the prosecution of their friends for an act of what amounted to political vandalism is far more extreme than the crime itself; that it amounts to a criminalization of dissent and reflects a broader right-wing crusade against people of color and the progressive left — and, as such, demonstrates precisely the horror of the system they were out in the streets that night to protest.”
Oppressed Bomb Throwers
Miller is not merely presenting the views of pals and colleagues of Mattis and Rahman here. Her entire essay parrots their belief that the government is persecuting the duo.
“Their mug shots indicate that, in the early morning hours of May 30, Mattis and Rahman may not quite have comprehended the trap they were in,” Miller writes. “As lawyers immersed in social-justice struggles, they might have predicted the antagonism of their own government, but even so, the full force of federal prosecution was surely disorienting.” She is insanely stating that Mattis and Rahman should have realized that tossing a Molotov cocktail at a police car would be seen as a hostile act when coming from committed progressives, ignoring the inherent malice of the act itself.
Just as ludicrously, Miller expresses shock that federal authorities concluded that a Molotov cocktail is, by definition, an incendiary weapon:
“[The federal indictment] categorizes the Molotov cocktail as ‘an incendiary device,’ which, in the legal code, includes homemade bombs along with grenades and missiles. The use of this type of ‘destructive device’ in a ‘crime of violence,’ with which Mattis and Rahman were also charged, carries a minimum sentence three times what it would have been if they had instead used a gun.”
Thinly hiding behind her qualifiers once again, Miller writes that “[t]o those on the progressive left, that makes for an illuminating, absurd contrast.” From there ensues another lame defense that destruction of property is not the same as the destruction of human life.
Amid all the ridiculousness, there are hints as to where these kids got their hatred. Mattis is the son of immigrants from the Caribbean. “In his senior year of high school, inspired by the mash-up in his mind of the material in his colonialism class…,” Miller writes about his nascent activism. A minority child of immigrants is taught to bear grievance against his nation as part of his high school curriculum.
Rahman was four when her Pakistani parents immigrated to America. Miller relates how she had been working at Bronx Legal Services, which a co-worker describes as a nest of radical young lawyers. “Any number of her colleagues might have been accused of throwing a Molotov cocktail into a cop car, and the news would have been met with an unsurprised shrug, [a] colleague says,” Miller writes. “But Rahman came across as so calm.”
Two young minority lawyers with promising futures stretching out before them instead got caught up in a violent environment of radical hate. There is strong evidence that their extremist beliefs inspired them to commit dangerous crimes that they now must account for in a court of law. Actions have consequences. But how many more lives will be destroyed because respected media outlets are telling young radicals that they should consider themselves to be above the law?
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