Dissertation

Influence of News Media Bias on American Perspective of White Supremacy

The United States currently faces a significant threat in the form of white supremacist extremists, who exist in multiple different forms ranging from lone wolfs whose attacks are impossible to predict, to neo-Nazi terrorist organizations that are willing and capable of carrying out devastating attacks on the United States in the name of their cause. This threat snuck up on us not because it was impossible to see, but because we were made to look in the wrong direction due to political media bias present in the nation's news media outlets. Political bias exists as a result of news outlets and publications attempting to affirm the views and beliefs of their core audience constantly. As a result, when the population reacted with fear and anger to the 9/11 terrorist attacks, news outlets capitalized on this by inflating the threat that Islamic terror posed to the United States. Unfortunately, a massive misunderstanding of the religion of Islam and its many complexities resulted in the entire people being labeled a threat as opposed to the relatively few radical fundamentalists who saw the United States as a threat to their religion. This false labeling created a massive 'us vs. them' mentality within the United States, further deepening the intense and unnecessary focus that Americans put on the threat of Islamic terror as well as causing the Muslim American community to have to endure a massive surge of discrimination and hate from the country that they call home. At the same time of this over-focus on Islamic terror, white nationalist groups were conspiring and organizing online, out of the prying eyes of the mainstream society that they so despised. Thousands of young white men were silently radicalized by these groups through online propaganda, resulting in several lone-wolf attacks against racial and ethnic minorities that were unfortunately not fully seen as an example of the white supremacist activity being ignored.

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