White Terrorists

A few days ago, a twenty-one-year-old white male named Kane Kosolowsky set off two bombs in the basement of a Sherwood Park community centre. He was found in his car, suffering from a gunshot wound, from which he later died. The RCMP has indicated that the blasts weren’t related to a group or ideology, and that’s led to coverage like this

I have nothing bad to say about the guy.
— Carlie Nicole

Another quote from the article: “She said she saw no warning signs, and asked people to show compassion, instead of vilifying her friend.”

It is the official position of the Fat Dog Podcast that Carlie can go fuck herself—but for good reason, and it touches on suicidal persons as well. It’s my opinion that we should just all come to realize that warning signs are a privilege and happen only when a person hasn’t committed to the idea. Anthony Bourdain and Robin Williams are my examples of this.

When people carry through with these vile things, such as attacks or suicide itself, it has always been the bulb inside of the onion. People are secretive and even the most kind and endearing of us are capable of manipulation, whether it be for selfish ends or a more insidious purpose.

In the days following the Las Vegas, Mandalay Bay attack, Stephen Paddock was described as a “country-music fan,” and his brother was quoted in saying: “If you told me an asteroid fell into Earth, it would mean the same to me. There’s absolutely no sense, no reason he did this…He’s just a guy who played video poker and took cruises and ate burritos at Taco Bell. There’s no political affiliation that we know of. There’s no religious affiliation that we know of.”

This article, written less than twenty-four hours after the attack, described the life of privilege that Paddock lived.

In North America, we have a horrible tendency to explain the lives of white terrorists. “This monster looks like me! But not can! How do look like me but am monster!?” Our animal brains take over and we need to know why something was done—looking for something that points away or takes the onus off the white person involved, like an extremist group or religious affiliation.

We do not use t he term “terrorist” when it is most appropriate. White people have to bomb the World Trade Centre and look like the Unabomber to be called terrorists—but, if you only have one of those things going for you AND STILL HOLD A GOVERNMENT STATION BY GUNPOINT, you’re not a terrorist. You’re a patriot.

Literally nothing happened to the Bundy’s, and they’re not acknowledged as terrorists, or insurgents. They’re car fleet managers and ranchers. They’re also white.

I’m so tired of seeing white privilege flexed in front of me, unconsciously on the news. I’m tired of feeling outraged for something that should be basic cognition for media outlets like the CBC—look at the disparity in coverage. Look at how many graduation photos of smiling brown people are posted in the wave of attacks claimed by ISIS vs. the number of smiling photos we see of rapists and white terrorists. It’s nearly impossible to currently find details on what really happened at Kosolowsky’s hands, because the stories by CTV and CBC are wrapped up in horseshit anecdotes about Kane himself.

It reminds me of the Brock Tuner coverage, not to that extent, but, Brock Tuner is the monster who attempted to rape an unconscious girl at Stanford, before being thwarted by exchange students. The media was running with headlines like “All-American swimmer found guilty of sexually assaulting unconscious woman on campus.” We start with his credits, and staunchly avoid the word rape in this headline, and look at the photo they chose to show with it. This is the Washington Post.

Photo taken from Kelly Ellis’ twitter timeline, 06/06/2016 @justkelly_ok

Photo taken from Kelly Ellis’ twitter timeline, 06/06/2016 @justkelly_ok

Another man, a Vanderbilt University football player, Corey Batey, committed essentially the same crime and was handed down fifteen years for his rape. Brock Turner, if you remember, got six months. What’s the difference between Corey and Brock? Corey’s black. He wasn’t referred to as an All-American. He doesn’t get to serve just half his sentence for good behaviour, he’ll be allowed to rot for the entire decade and a half, and upon his release, face the same system that put him in there, but this time, it’ll keep him out. Even after the crime and punishment, Corey will be held back in ways that Brock will never even think about and it’ll be both the fault of the world we live in, and the way the media portrayed them both through their trials.

I could talk about that until I go blue in the face, but white people need to start holding other white people accountable in real, tangible ways.  A lot of the time, it’s unconscious, but the only way to really build a new mode of operations is to start on the ground floor and call a spade a spade. Donald Trump is racist, Brock Turner is a rapist, and Apple is the only pie that matters.

See you tomorrow.