Last week, the mainstream TV news media reported extensively on the conservative boycott against Target, but went silent as multiple Target locations faced bomb threats from an alleged LGBT activist. This raises questions about the media’s dedication to a narrative that portrays the right as being responsible for all political violence.
A conservative boycott against Target’s pride-themed children’s apparel attracted significant attention from many liberal cable and broadcast networks, with CNN devoting 31 minutes of airtime to the topic last week. MSNBC and NBC followed suit, spending a combined total of more than seven minutes covering the boycott. Surprisingly, however, none of these networks even mentioned the bomb threats made against Target, even when the threats led to several store evacuations. As we now know, law enforcement has deemed these threats to be non-credible, likely hoaxes.
One must wonder if the situation would be different had these hoaxes been perpetrated by conservative activists. It seems likely that the media’s response would be much greater in that case, but to report on that, they would have to acknowledge their own failure to cover these potentially serious bomb threats in the first place. The media’s lack of attention to such a story doesn’t absolve them of their responsibility, and their sudden silence speaks volumes.
The media often only reports on domestic terrorism when they can pin the blame on the right. They are deeply committed to maintaining a narrative that the American right is solely responsible for political violence, and they curate their reporting to support that narrative at every turn. We can recall how these same outlets dedicated days of coverage to Nicholas Sandmann in 2019 based on a few seconds of video. If that was enough for liberal networks to attack a high school student, surely they should have found the time to cover a series of bomb threats, even if they were later found not to be credible.
In conclusion, the media’s refusal to cover the bomb threats against Target and their eagerness to report on the conservative boycott highlights a troubling bias. This bias distorts the narrative surrounding domestic terrorism and the responsibility of the American right, undermining the credibility of these media sources in the eyes of the public.