Assuming the gunman who shot up the Buffalo, New York, grocery store really was motivated by anti-black racism, let’s do what the media do when faced with an Islamic terrorist who goes on a killing spree in America and just refer to him as a “lone wolf,” a mentally unstable individual who in no way reflects any broader phenomenon or trend.
Except, unlike with violent Muslim extremism, that characterization in this case would be true.
Despite what the media, Democrats, leftists, and, of course, the permanent Washington bureaucracy say (over, and over, and over again), there is no imminent, large-scale threat from white nationalists. It doesn’t exist outside of Joe Biden’s TelePrompter.
To that claim, leftists would surely point to news reports and declarations by the U.S. Justice Department and Homeland Security. The New York Times has been all over it.
“Top law enforcement officials say the biggest domestic terror threat comes from white supremacists.”— New York Times, June 15, 2021
“Homeland Security Dept. Affirms Threat of White Supremacy After Years of Prodding.”—New York Times, Oct. 1, 2019
“The Grave Threats of White Supremacy and Far-Right Extremism.”—New York Times, Feb. 22, 2019
Even under Donald Trump—especially under Donald Trump—the permanent bureaucracy had been hyperventilating about “white supremacy” and the existential threat it supposedly represented to every American, and even democracy itself.
Strangely enough, though, there isn’t a ton of publicly available government data on the topic. More often than not, a government agency or official makes an assertion about white supremacists on a rampage and we’re just supposed to take it as fact without hearing any specifics.
For a threat so pervasive, prolific, and prominent, wouldn’t you expect there to be a nearly unlimited body of work readily available for the public to consume and understand just how grave it is?
It’s not there. You’re supposed to believe it anyway.
Sorry, government, but would you mind showing me your work on this thing you’re telling me is imminently deadly?
Shut your racist mouth!
In the final months of Trump’s term, Acting Homeland Security Secretary Chad Wolf released a report titled “Homeland Threat Assessment.” In that report, Wolf said he was “particularly concerned about white supremacist violent extremists who have been exceptionally lethal in their abhorrent, targeted attacks in recent years.”
The report said that domestic violent extremists, “specifically white supremacist extremists (WSEs)” were and would continue to be “the most persistent and lethal threat in the Homeland.” It made all kinds of claims about “WSEs”: that they have “demonstrated longstanding intent to target racial and religious minorities, members of the LGBTQ+ community, politicians, and those they believe promote multi-culturalism and globalization”; and “have conducted more lethal attacks in the United States than any other DVE (domestic violent extremist) movement”; and “have engaged in outreach and networking opportunities abroad.”
There was even a tally alleging that nearly 40 people had been killed in attacks perpetrated by “WSEs” from 2018 and 2019. “WSEs conducted half of all lethal attacks (8 of 16), resulting in the majority of deaths (39 of 48),” the report said.
But there was a problem with the report. There were precisely zero citations showing where the Department of Homeland Security had derived its conclusions—no news articles or academic papers. Just an assurance by the acting secretary, who was “particularly concerned about white supremacist violent extremists” of late.
Hmm — might there be information elsewhere? A document published the previous year by the same department said the agency looked at the years from 2000 to mid-2016 and counted “28 attacks in the United States committed by WSEs, which collectively resulted in 51 fatalities.”
That factoid came with a citation, so that’s good. But this was the corresponding footnote: “Based on a review of US Government information, law enforcement reporting, and open source.” There was no link to specific incidents or verifiable data. There was no cross reference. That wouldn’t fly in a high school English paper, but the feds apparently think they’re above having to back up their wild claims with any actual evidence.
There’s more publicly available information about the government spending millions of dollars to investigate the prevalence of obesity in lesbians than there is about an allegedly serious and fatal threat we’re facing from white supremacists.
What about at the state level? In 2019, Democrat New Jersey Gov. Philip Murphy’s administration published a report on individual episodes of “domestic terrorism” that purportedly took place across the nation throughout the previous year. To the department’s credit, it was highly transparent about what it was counting as an incident of “terrorism,” including names, dates, and locations of the perpetrators.
There were, the report said, a total of 32 “domestic terrorist attacks, disrupted plots, threats of violence, and weapons stockpiling by individuals with a radical political or social agenda.” Of that 32, the office said the overwhelming majority, 25, were carried out by white supremacists.
The report listed each individual incident of white supremacist-linked terrorism, with the name of the perpetrator, his age, and the location of the incident, but without references to where it drew the data. Additional information requires looking up each episode on your own.
One of the incidents involved Benjamin Morro, a 28-year-old Wisconsin man who accidentally killed himself by mishandling explosives in his apartment. No motive has ever been established as to why Morro had the combustible items but law enforcement claimed to have found “white supremacist material,” i.e., literature in pamphlets or books, in his home.
Is a dummy who accidentally blows himself up what comes to mind when you hear the phrase “white supremacist terrorist attack”?
Another one involved Ronnie Wilson, a 32-year-old Tennessee man who was charged with shooting a cop during a traffic stop. Wilson was allegedly a member of the white supremacist gang Aryan Nations, but the officer he shot was also white.
When a white man shoots another white man, is that what comes to mind when you hear the phrase “white supremacist terrorist attack”?
One other incident involved a homeless man who was yelling racial epithets in public. (To which I ask, has anyone seen or heard from Chris Matthews lately?)
Yet another pertained to a black man who was burned alive by his white housemate. The two of them lived at Frazier Young Supportive Living, a residence in Tennessee for the mentally impaired.
A homeless man and a literal mental patient. Is that what comes to mind when you hear the phrase “white supremacist terrorist attacks”?
If those four incidents don’t fill you with fear that white supremacists lurk in the shadows to commit random acts of violence, I don’t know what to tell you. You should be deathly afraid!
To be sure, not all of the entries in the New Jersey government’s report are a reach. A few appear to be legitimate, racially motivated attacks on ethnic minorities.
One involved Natasha Bowers, a 33-year-old woman who, along with five other skinheads, beat up a black man in the back of a bar in Pennsylvania. But the odd thing about that solitary episode is that it was counted by the report as six separate attacks, one for each of the attackers charged by police.
The authors of the report did the same thing with the assault of a black man at a bar in Washington state. Eight attackers identified by law enforcement were believed to be affiliated with the Aryan Brotherhood. Each suspect was listed in the report as an individual “white supremacist attack,” even though there was only one incident.
This would be like saying we had 19 separate September 11s because that’s the number of hijackers who participated. No, we had just the one carried out by multiple people. That more than one attacker was involved doesn’t mean we count each one as an individual event.
To recap: of the 25 attacks labeled in the New Jersey government’s report as white supremacy, 14 were related to only two separate incidents. One of them involved a man who accidentally killed himself, another was perpetrated by a homeless guy, and yet another was committed by a mental patient in a home for the intellectually disabled. That brings the total attacks in 2018 down to more like eight—across our entire nation of 330 million people.
Fewer than ten “white supremacy” attacks doesn’t exactly sound like something the FBI should be busying itself with. The numbers on “white supremacy” couldn’t have been more padded if they were on their period.
Yet the president is scheduled to visit Buffalo this week, where he will most certainly talk up white supremacy as an all-consuming force that can only be beaten back by voting for more Democrats. It’s a lie.