On the Jan. 5 edition of Fox News’ “The Five,” conservative journalist Jesse Watters downplayed the 2015 Charleston Emmanuel A.M.E. church shooting by comparing it to the recent Chicago torture of a mentally disabled white teen.
During the telecast, Watters claimed that the media did not immediately cover the torture and beating of a white teen by a group of Black youths. He also attacked President Barack Obama for not weighing in on the incident as his administration has in other similar racial attacks.
“We know if this was on the other foot,” Watters says, “if these were white Trump supporters doing this to a Black disabled man, the president would be weighing in. [Rev. Al] Sharpton, [Rev. Jesse] Jackson would be on the scene.
“Trump would have to answer for this. White America would have to answer for this.”
Fox News‘ liberal commentator Juan Williams said that both sides, white and Black, would act in a similar fashion depending on the color of the victim. He prefaced his statement by reminding the audience of the horrific 1998 decapitation murder in Jasper, Texas, of James Byrd, who was dragged behind a truck by a three white men, two of whom were known white supremacists.
That high-profile case occurred while George W. Bush was governor of Texas and Williams recalled how the NAACP chafed at Bush’s lackluster response, which Williams attributed to poor hate-crime laws.
“It gets used on both sides,” Williams says. “It is not like Dylann Roof doesn’t exist going into a Black church and shooting it up. And then people are saying that is a reason for more racial crimes.”
Watters interjected, claiming there will be less media coverage focused on the Chicago story. “Are there going to be satellite trucks parked outside this trial in Chicago like there were at Dylann Roof’s trial?” Watters asks. “I doubt it. … This story gets much less coverage than Dylann Roof.”