When Nabra Hassanen was brutally murdered in Virginia this past Sunday, the media’s collective ears perked up. She was a studious, friendly, innocent 17-year-old, a devout Muslim who was killed while approaching her mosque.
Almost immediately, The Atlantic ran with this headline: “Muslims Feel Under Seige.” The magazine instinctively linked Nabra’s killing with the London incident in which a man plowed his car into a group of Muslims leaving their mosque.
“Muslim Americans are mourning and terrified,” The Atlantic breathlessly reported, “after two violent incidents left worshippers dead over the weekend during the holy month of Ramadan.”
USA Today and the Huffington Post both headlined Nabra’s religion and her proximity to the mosque, clearly implying that this was a “hate crime” perpetrated against Muslims.
The Council on American-Islamic Affairs, naturally, suggested bias and claimed there is “rising Islamophobia and anti-Muslim hate attacks nationwide.”
We are not accusing media types of celebrating the killing, but they were enthused because this seemed to fit their narrative that America is a hate-filled country and Muslims are frequently targets of violence.
But that familiar and comfortable story line fell apart almost immediately. Police reported that the young girl’s killer was 22-year-old Darwin Martinez Torres, who apparently pursued a group of teens who were blocking his car. This was a case of road rage, not anti-Muslim animus.
Even more inconvenient for the left-wing media, Torres is in this country illegally. Whether you prefer the term “undocumented immigrant” or an “illegal alien,” this loathsome killer came here from El Salvador and never should have been able to cross the border.
On the night of the murder, Torres grew enraged when the teens were impeding his path. He got out of his car, chased them with a baseball bat, and smashed Nabra Hassanen in the head when she tripped and fell. He then abducted the young woman, beat her a second time, killed her, and dumped her in a pond adjacent to his apartment complex. There are new reports suggesting that Nabra was also sexually violated.
So you can see the dilemma facing mainstream media outlets. A crime against one of their prized victim groups was committed by a member of another victim group. What to do?
The Washington Post figured out how to handle the story without upsetting their liberal reader base. The paper, whose much-ridiculed motto is “Democracy Dies in Darkness,” described Torres as a “22-year-old construction worker.”
The Post managed to avoid the word “illegal,” but did mention that immigration officials had requested that a detainer be placed on Torres. So, by assiduously reading between the lines, you could discern that Martinez Torres is in this country illegally.
The New York Times, in its initial story on the killing, used the term “Muslim teenager” in the very first sentence of its 900-word story and bemoaned the reported rise in attacks against American Muslims. The Times also mentioned the London incident, but never once saw fit to use the words “illegal” or “immigration.”
And the networks? According to the invaluable Media Research Center, CBS and NBC totally ignored the story on their Monday evening newscasts. ABC mentioned the victim’s religion and the mosque, but failed to note that Torres is an illegal alien.
We should be very clear: Darwin Martinez Torres should not be in this country, and Nabra Hassanen should be enjoying her summer vacation.
This sickening murder may not fit the legal definition of “hate crime,” but what is more hateful and despicable than a young girl being beaten to death and tossed into a pond?
The media were saturated last week, rightly so, with the news of a horrendous political shooting in Virginia. But we heard little about this awful crime in Virginia in which a young girl was savagely killed.
Would it have been covered differently if the victim had been targeted because she was Muslim? Or if the killer was a white guy and not an illegal alien? Of course!
This is one more indictment of our totally corrupt, agenda-driven, and dishonest media.