NYT to the rescue, lessens significance of murder of Englishmen in Sarasota

David B. writes:

Here is an article in the New York Times on the murder of the two young British tourists in Sarasota, Florida (discussed at VFR here). The Times calls it “a Florida double murder that has consumed the press in England,” and describes the crime scene as “the city’s roughest neighborhood.” The theme of the article is that violent crime in Sarasota is an anomaly and that the British media coverage is excessive.

Here is the Times article. See, following the article, my commentary on it.

April 19, 2011
Sarasota Police Seek Clues After Tourists Are Killed

MIAMI—In a Florida double murder that has consumed the press in England, two British college graduates vacationing in Sarasota were shot dead in the city’s roughest neighborhood Saturday after an evening of drinks at a local bar.

Police officials are investigating how the young men, James Cooper, 25, and James T. Kouzaris, 24, got from the bar in downtown Sarasota to the public housing project, where they died on a narrow, one-way street. The police found the men after receiving a 911 call.

The two British tourists did not have a rental car and were staying with Mr. Cooper’s parents in a condominium on nearby Longboat Key on the Gulf Coast.

Shawn Tyson, a 16-year-old dropout, was charged Sunday with two counts of first-degree murder. The shooting took place one day after Mr. Tyson was released from a juvenile facility after his arrest on charges of aggravated assault with a handgun, police officials said. Mr. Tyson was accused of shooting out a car window and spent eight days in detention. [LA replies: Let’s pause over that a second: he was arrested for shooting out a car window, he was released, and a day later he allegedly committed a double murder.]

Mr. Tyson, who last year dropped out of the eighth grade in a school for children with special needs, lives two blocks from the murder scene. Prosecutors said they intended to try him as an adult.

“From what I can pull together in the past few days, I don’t think we have ever had a tourist murdered, much less two at the same time,” Kelly Kirschner, the mayor of Sarasota, said Tuesday. “It’s critically tragic.”

The Sarasota police chief, Mikel Hollaway, said at a news conference that he believed Mr. Cooper and Mr. Kouzaris were in the neighborhood voluntarily. No drugs or weapons were found on them. The police are circulating photos of the men in Smokin’ Joe’s bar in downtown Sarasota, where they went for drinks, in the hopes that someone will recognize them and come forward with information.

As the police pieced together details of the killings, Mr. Cooper’s parents flew home to Britain.

Mr. Cooper and Mr. Kouzaris graduated from the University of Sheffield together. A tennis coach, Mr. Cooper, or Coops as he was called, was a leader in Sheffield, his friend Alex Porter said in an e-mail. “He was possibly the funniest and most quick-witted person I have had the pleasure of knowing,” Mr. Porter said, adding that the two had plans to go to Wimbledon this summer.

Mr. Kouzaris, a rugby player and would-be urban planner who was called Jam, was no different. His Facebook page is studded with Web sites for rough road, high-mountain biking. He had studied town planning at the university and had recently moved from Taiwan and joined Mr. Cooper for a three-week vacation. “Amazing” was Mr. Kouzaris’s favorite word and his outlook on life, Mr. Porter said.

Facing a blizzard of harsh British press coverage, Sarasota officials are trying to dispel notions that the city is blighted by crime. These are the first two murders this year in the city of 55,000.

“The British media is portraying this as crime run amok, and that is not true,” Mr. Kirschner said, adding that the city has worked to address the higher crime rate on Sarasota’s north side. “It doesn’t matter where you are in 26 square miles of the city of Sarasota, you should have every expectation you and your family should be safe.”

[end of article]

LA writes:

The way liberals deny the existence of realities that undercut liberalism is to break them down nominalistically into smaller pieces that have no meaning. For example, as we’ve seen many times, the media and the authorities treat each jihadist terror attack as though it were an isolated incident done by an isolated individual, not part of a larger pattern that is reflective of Islam. In the present story, the New York Times in order to conceal the real meaning of the story constructs two “smaller pieces” devoid of meaning: (a) murders in the city of Sarasota in 2011; and (b) murders of tourists in Sarasota. The Times tells us that because this is the first murder in Sarasota this year, and because this is the first time that tourists have ever been killed in Sarasota, the double murder of Cooper and Kouzaris is not typical of anything, and therefore the obsession of the British press with the murders is somehow inappropriate.

What the Times leaves out is the larger picture, consisting of (a) the ongoing epidemic of black-on-white violence throughout the Western and non-Western worlds; and (b) black murders of British tourists in a variety of countries (several of which are posted here). That is the larger reality that the British press is evidently riled up about, but by not mentioning that reality, and by confining the issue exclusively to the zero tourists who have previously been murdered in Sarasota, the Times makes the British seem irrational or prejudiced.

- end of initial entry -

Dean Ericson writes:

The Daily Mail has this classic example of liberal blame-shifting, in an article by Paul Thompson and Michael Seamark:

Away from the all the luxury and glamour of the attractions and hotels, a gun-toting, drug-fuelled menace awaits where people live in abject deprivation on a scale unimaginable in Britain, with our generous welfare state and infrastructure of public services.

This desperate poverty and squalor has served as the breeding ground for serious, often lethal crime from young men who feel they have nothing to lose, in a society which has given them nothing. And it is precisely this sense of desperation which makes these neighbourhoods so dangerous for those outsiders unfortunate or foolish enough to enter them.

The United States has always been a land of extremes. The richest country in the world also contains some of the most shameful poverty in the West. The land of liberty also has the most draconian criminal justice regime of any developed country, reflected not only in the retention of the death penalty but also in the massive prison population.

LA replies:

Hmm, so the reason blacks are so violent is that so many blacks are in prison. And the reason they are in prison is that America is cruel to them.

I’m surprised the Mail would have published this. Most of the time it is screaming about minority crime. It just shows that they lack any coherent editorial philosophy.

April 21

An Indian living in the West writes:

The Europeans have always had difficulty dealing with the issue of black crime in the United States—even the “right-wing” Telegraph deals with it in no less a mealy mouthed fashion than any liberal newspaper. The problem the Europeans have is in comprehending the sheer brutality and violence inherent in black neighbourhoods. In the liberal European universe if you have universal healthcare, a not very harsh criminal justice system and a massive welfare state, you don’t get black crime.

As black immigrants continue to pour into Europe, it will be interesting to see how the Europeans deal with crime in a few decades from now. They will certainly get a lot of it in the major cities—and it won’t be easy to handle. France already has neighbourhoods where the police refuse to go. In fact, on my last trip to Paris I felt positively menaced in a way that I have never felt menaced in any European city. The area around Gare du Nord has become quite dangerous at night. It is an amazing contrast. The station serves as the alighting point for passengers coming to Paris from London on the Eurostar carrying many business travellers. And yet if you wander around the station for too long at night, you shouldn’t be surprised if you get pummeled into a pulp by well built, very big 17 year old black kids who have the luxury of not needing to work and who have been fed on an excellent diet financed by the hapless French taxpayer.

Liberalism is an absurd universe.

ILW continues:
I wanted to add to the last comment:

Blaming “poverty” and “desperation” for violent crime is a unqiue Western invention that often completely befuddles Asians who visit the West for the first time. There is more wretched poverty and desperation in Bombay than the entire Western world put together. And yet, there is almost no violent crime in Bombay despite the wretched poverty, the desperation and the extreme inequality (on a scale that no western country has).

There are very few “poor” people in America that would qualify as “poor” by the standards of what is “poor” in India or any poor country. So obviously, it is not “poverty” and “desperation” that makes them commit these crimes.

LA replies:

The poor of Bombay are not blacks living in the same country with whites who are better off than they in every way.

Posted by Lawrence Auster at April 20, 2011 12:16 PM | Send

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