Wednesday, September 22, 2010
Lawrence Auster's preoccupation with race sometimes blinds him to Islam
On his blog, Lawrence Auster notes an "odd" news story out of Seattle, concerning the beating and cigarette-torture of a white boy (age 16) by two young men -- a black man age 22 and a Filipino man age 21 (they also poured their beers on him and urinated on him, according to the report). Lawrence Auster congratulates the newspaper (The Seattle Times) and its reporter for highlighting the racist aspect of this ethnic-on-white hate crime, and he only chides the reporter for confusing the details, which Auster proceeds to sort out.
However, Auster missed one glaring (and highly probably crucial) aspect of the story -- and so too did The Seattle Times.
When I first read Auster's headline, I already thought something was "odd" about it: Why would a young black guy team up with a young Filipino guy to inflict a racist beating on a white boy? Sure, there are times when ethnic minorities group together, casually, for various misdemeanors or even crimes (or just for loitering in front of public places in certain areas to bother passers-by); though most of the time, they tend to congregate in segregated groups. This detail of the story, thus, is remarkable enough to merit closer inspection. What could a young black guy and a young Filipino guy have in common?
Well, it didn't take long to find out, when I read the copy of the story Auster himself provided on his blog, right there in the third paragraph -- quote:
"DNA recently linked Ahmed Mohamed and Jonathan Baquiring to the attack..."
Surely Auster knows that the Philippines contains millions of Muslims (approximately over 4 and a half million). If a Filipino joins a black guy named "Ahmed Mohamed" to beat up a white youth, the chances are high that Islam is a factor here. The fact that the news report mentions nothing about the Islam factor is not surprising, as the Islam factor of news stories in which it figures prominently is commonly underplayed, if not wholly airbrushed out, in the mainstream news media.
In this case, Auster in his preoccupation with ethnic minorities may well have missed the camel in the room -- and given his otherwise fine (though not perfect) analysis of various angles of the problem of Islam, that's what's "odd" about this.