Fox News and other conservative news outlets have been highlighting videos of brazen smash and grab incidents in Democrat-run cities. The claim is that there’s been a marked increase in shoplifting this year.
MSNBC just published a video that supposedly debunks this notion.
The video, which is mainly in the form of an interview, makes several points:
- It’s not fair to compare this year’s shoplifting statistics with those of last year, since much of the economy was shut down last year. When citing increases in crime, we should take context into account. Last year, most people, including shoplifters, stayed home.
- The right-wing media lumps this supposed increase in shoplifting (which is an illusion) with the very real uptick in homicide. To paraphrase, “the increase in homicides is very real and tragic, but Fox loves showing videos of black people shoplifting.”
- These days, with the prevalence of cell phones, it’s more easy to capture such events on video. “People can now capture folks shoplifting in a way that they couldn’t before…”
- Such reports are “propagandistic” and a “media campaign.”
- Fox benefited from a real increase in crime in places like San Fransisco, but it’s not accurate to extrapolate from this, and portray it as a nationwide problem.
I think point #1 is a valid one, at least when looking strictly at crime statistics. However, I find it interesting that MSNBC would make this claim, considering the fact that it was MSNBC that ran a story titled “Major U.S. retailers urge action by Congress on online sales of stolen and counterfeit goods” in which it wrote:
A wave of “smash-and-grab” crimes is plaguing upscale stores in major U.S. cities, with mobs of thieves making off with expensive goods in brazen raids. The cities of San Francisco and Los Angeles have seen a several high-profile robberies.
Of course, there’s room for differences of opinion within the same network, but the retailers clearly would not agree with the video. In all fairness, this was mentioned in the video.
Point #2 is more problematic. The host accuses Fox News of racism for showing videos of blacks committing theft, even as he acknowledges the reality of increased homicide rates. Does he not realize that a majority of those homicides are also committed by blacks? If he’s going to bring up race in his conversation about crime, then it’s ridiculous for him to omit this fact – but if he did bring it up, then he would come across as even more ridiculous. In other words, he’s guilty of either ignorance or deception.
Point #3 is laughable. Cell phones have been ubiquitous for several years now. Is he really claiming that people lacked the ability to easily capture video with their cell phones 2 or 3 years ago? Come on man!
Point #4 really takes the cake for hypocrisy. After all, didn’t NBC, and other leftist news organizations, create a media campaign, and propagandize, the death of George Floyd? How dare NBC accuse right-wing news outlets of “propagandizing” these smash-and-grab crimes, when it did far worse with BLM? How many unarmed black men were killed by police in 2019? Nine. The police killed 9 unarmed blacks in that year – and this does not automatically mean that all those killings were unjustified. In that same year, 19 unarmed whites were killed by the police.
Point #5 doesn’t even start. Firstly, who cares if “Fox benefits?” Either the news accounts are accurate, or they’re not. If a news outlet “benefits” by doing its job, then so much the better; this should be encouraged. Also, Fox does not portray it as a “Nationwide problem;” it’s portrayed as a problem in Democrat-run cities – and this seems to be accurate. It effects areas where state/local governments have made bad decisions regarding crime.