Sally Kohn: Stop blaming Black Lives Matter the way I blame pro-lifers
Sally Kohn is having a hard day. Yesterday she was clearly in her glory offering encouragement to Black Lives Matter groups across the country:
And then, last night, a man angry about police shootings shot 11 police officers, killing five of them. So just a few hours later she’s feeling defensive.
Now, the argument about how much culpability groups and their message have for the actions of individuals is one we seem to come back to after every mass shooting. So there is a long and well-worn history of activists on every side saying ‘Don’t blame us, we are against violence!’ So you’d think, on this morning, Sally Kohn would have some self-reflection about her own history of blame-casting which, as Twitter user ‘neontaster’ pointed out, is well-documented:
Her attacks on pro-lifers after a shooting at a Planned Parenthood clinic seem like a particularly apt comparison since, as pro-lifers like myself see it, their movement is also about opposing systemic violence. But Sally isn’t buying that:
Note that the only part of “selling baby parts” that is even in question is the word selling. That the organs were transferred and money exchanged is agreed to by everyone. The only question is whether a profit was made. But even if you think it was not, there is still plenty in the story to find objectionable. Even the head of Planned Parenthood apologized for the heartless tone. Sally’s next tweet doubled down on her double-standard:
Well, it’s not really that simple is it? First of all, saying someone else is a killer doesn’t necessarily incite violence and might just be accurate. But if it does incite violence then there are certainly plenty of examples of people involved with Black Lives Matter calling police killers or even murderers.
In fact, Sandra Bland committed suicide. There is no evidence she was killed by police but there is evidence she was depressed and had previously attempted suicide. There are of course lots of other examples we could cite of BLM leaders and people sympathetic with the movement calling police killers and even some of people calling for violence against police.
But back to Sally Kohn and her lack of self-awareness. Just a few moments after criticizing the language of pro-lifers, Kohn retweeted this:
The latter “murderers” in this case are police officers. So spparently Kohn sees “baby killers” as a problem but “murderers” is not a problem. Again, maybe these aren’t incitements at all but accurate descriptions, but Kohn wants to have it both ways, i.e. it’s incitement when pro-lifers say it but just descriptive when BLM says much the same. At some point her tweets became borderline incoherent:
Do we really need to be told the protests were a response to what looks like bad policing? Didn’t everyone know that? It seems Kohn is once again trying to rule out the blaming of the protests for inciting the violence but, again, that’s not a stance she takes consistently. She is eager to blame violence on a protest movement when that violence is against a Planned Parenthood clinic. She is unwilling to acknowledge that she is guilty of the same behavior she deplores in others.
I don’t know, Sally, did you stop blaming pro-lifers after national leaders denounced the Planned Parenthood shooting? Did you, Sally?