Right-wing response to knoxville church shooting: Silence.

On Monday, June 28, a right-wing pro-confederate gunman walked into a Unitarian church in Knoxville, TN, and opened fire. He killed two people and wounded six more. In a letter he left in his vehicle, he expressed anger at liberals and gays, and in his home were found books by Michael Savage, Sean Hannity, and Bill O’Reilly.

The left-wing blogs have given this story a lot of attention. The right-wing blogs…not so much.

Let’s start with Instapundit, written by conservative Glenn Reynolds. Reynolds teaches at the University of Tennessee in Knoxville, so this would be local news for him. What does he have to say?

Reynolds only has time to hack out a total of five sentences in three separate posts. He’s been in Florida, you see, so it’s understandable that posting would be light. Well, except for the 17 other posts mixed in with the above.

Michelle Malkin takes note of the shootings. Since a right-wing, anti-liberal murderer doesn’t fit in with her readers’ worldview, however, it is here that the wingnuts start to spin the story into some kind of grand liberal conspiracy theory to discredit conservatives. Right out of the gate, commenter Atheling provides us with this:

If he hated libtards, whey didn’t he go shooting at some college campus?

I smell a rat.

It just gets worse from there. The commenters continue to spin conspiracy theories, but eventually find their native ground and start condemning Muslims.

Other than those two, the right-wing blogosphere has pretty much ignored the story.

What about the news organizations, then. The New York Times discusses it. So does the Washington Post. Here is coverage by the Associated Press. Here’s the sensationalistically titled piece from the New York Post. Here is the take from USA Today.

CNN offers this story. Here is coverage by MSNBC. This is ABC’s coverage. Here is the link to that from CBS. Fox News has…

Nothing. Fox News has absolutely nothing about this incident. Neither does my local Fox affiliate, less than 100 miles from Knoxville. And neither, for that matter, does Knoxville’s own FOX affiliate – although I don’t even think that site has a news section.

This is rather astonishing. A substantial percentage of conservatives get their news exclusively from Fox News and right-wing blogs, and they are being kept entirely in the dark about this story. That is on purpose. Fox News and the right-wing blogs know their audiences; they know what those audiences want to hear, and what they don’t. Stories like this fall into that latter category because they challenge the conservative narrative, and they must be filtered out.

If this story had involved a Muslim or leftist, you could be assured that Fox News and the right-wing blogs would have been all over it.

If this is not a perfect example of the deception on which the conservative movement is based, then I don’t know what could possibly convince you.

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