A tragic bigotry-driven massacre in a foreign land, killing dozens, recently left a religious community shattered. If you’re thinking only of the shooting at a New Zealand mosque, it is evident that the other event received very little attention from the mainstream media and condemnation from leading global figures on Twitter. In case you were unaware, 32 Christians recently were killed in Nigeria by Muslim militants during a religious ceremony, bringing the death toll to 120 in less than a month.
The reportage practiced by the left-leaning press in recent days highlights their bias – a rush to denounce one tragedy and virtual silence on the other. Is this part of a greater trend of the Fourth Estate’s disdain for Christianity and its affinity for Islam? While it is easy to point out the dichotomy in coverage, the importance of alluding to the establishment’s complaints about reticence is even more telling.
And that is exactly what Maxime Bernier, the libertarian-leaning Member of Parliament and leader of the People’s Party of Canada, did over the weekend: stayed quiet. It’s the Covington affair all over again – getting in trouble for standing still and smiling.
How Dare You
Stephen Maher, a celebrated Canadian journalist, grieved on Twitter that Bernier and his party refused to comment on the terrorist attack, insultingly asserting that he “likely wants to avoid alienating some of his supporters by expressing solidarity with the victims.”
Bernier responded by noting that he doesn’t “comment on these horrible tragedies in other countries,” which is a
decision he made roughly two years ago, soon after his failed bid for the Conservative leadership. When he received further pushback, Bernier clarified that he condemns all violence (well, duh) and refuses to play a game appeasing “some journalists [who] want to assess politicians’ fitness for office on the basis of the timing and precise wording of tweets sent after some of these foreign tragedies.”
His case was supported when award-winning broadcast journalist Charles Adler “expected better” from Governor General Julie Payette because she omitted three keywords from her statement: Muslim, Islamophobia, and terror. Soon after, National Post columnist Andrew Coyne asked why Conservative Party leader Andrew Scheer has a hard time finding the right thing to say.
Ultimately, it is a case of “damned if you do, damned if you don’t” among the punditry class. They will take you to the woodshed if you choose to stay silent, and they will nitpick every word in your official release expressing your grief and support.
Bernier is correct when he says the talking heads have lost their minds and officials should never grovel to these folks just to avoid criticism.
Whether it is in New Zealand or Nigeria, will any of the victims’ family members lose sleep at night because Bernier did not send his thoughts and prayers via tweet? Will they shed even more tears because Scheer said “worshippers” instead of “Muslims”? Will history remember Prime Minister Justin Trudeau for issuing a statement a couple of hours too late?
Most people outside of Canada are unaware who Bernier and Scheer are, and others around the world are indifferent to what Trudeau does or says. But don’t tell that to the anointed Canadians who think someone residing on the other side of the world, who just saw their loved one perish, hangs on to every word of Green Party leader Elizabeth May or New Democratic Party head Jagmeet Singh.
But what is even more egregious is how arbitrary the condemnations have become.
According to the gatekeepers of allowable opinion, you are a fiend – or, heaven forbid, a racist! – for not commenting on the carnage in a remote part of the globe that fits the intersectionality dogma. Considering that there have been 545 attacks and more than 2,100 fatalities in 2019 (at the time of this writing), politicians would be spending a large portion of their time on social media and television rebuking all these heinous acts.
On March 17, there were three terrorist attacks: four were killed in Pakistan, 21 dead in Mali, and one person perished in Syria. There were seven reports of terrorism on the previous day. How come Adler, Coyne, and Maher did not request Bernier and Scheer to comment on these incidents? What about Nigerian Christians? Aren’t these actions just as horrific as what happened in Christchurch?
Sit This One Out
Massacres happen every day all over the world. It is admirable that, for a moment of solidarity in these toxic times, many people are sending their thoughts and prayers to those who suffered a terrible ordeal. But those who make it a rule to sit this one out or who correctly observe how the press picks and chooses for whom to mourn, primarily done on a politically correct basis, they should not be subjected to ridicule or accusations of racism.