Saturday, April 04, 2009

2342 Why some, but not others?

Saturday, April 4, 2009

The shootings in Binghamton have received a lot of media attention. The shooter, by the way, was recently laid off by The Company. The theory is that he was upset because his grasp of English was poor, making it difficult to find another job. I'm not surprised at the possibility that The Company brought him in from Pakistan on a work permit, then dumped him.

But that's not what I'm wondering about right now.

I'm wondering why, when articles in US and world newspapers and news sites reporting this incident cite earlier similar mass shootings, they mention the guy who went on a rampage in Alabama last month, and the Virginia Tech incident, and Columbine, and several others, but no one mentions the shootings this past Sunday at a nursing home in North Carolina.

Well, I don't have to wonder why nobody mentions it, because almost nobody knows about it. And that's my question. Why does nobody know? Why was it ignored? You can find reports, but you have to look for them (in contrast to the non-news of levees that DIDN'T break in North Dakota).

I have to wonder what is the basis for media decisions to flood us with some stories, but ignore others.

Is it possible that most of the seven elderly residents and one employee killed, and others wounded, were black, and therefore not worth mention? (I don't know that they are, just something else to wonder about.)

Sorta like when a white child goes missing, the whole country hears about it, but when a black child goes missing, everybody just shrugs.


Update: Others are wondering, too. In his blog, Field Negro points out

The thin coverage the story has received nationwide has been rather astounding. According to, in the 24 hours since news broke about the bloody killing spree, it has received just 180 mentions on cable and network television, combined (i.e. ABC, CBS, CNN, Fox News, CNN Headline News, MSNBC, and NBC.)

By contrast, the flood that didn't materialize as feared in Fargo, North Dakota, over the weekend received nearly 250 mentions during the same time span. So the flood that didn't happen got more coverage than than the killing rampage that left eight people dead in North Carolina.


Zayrina said...

It was all over the news here, CNN and on the Internet. Folks definitely know about it, and I never thought about what the color of the skin was involved.

~~Silk said...

Then you must have got the lion's share of the 180 mentions, because it sure wasn't covered here.