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Vale Jo Cox

A tragedy of major proportions - on every conceivable level - sees the brutal slaying of British MP, Jo Cox.     What is our world coming to?

A related and relevant commentary can be found in Crikey (behind a paywall) the online Australian publication.....

"A man — later described with those inevitable words “loner” and “kept to himself” — kills a pro-EU British Labour MP, allegedly yelling “Britain first” as he stabs and shoots her repeatedly. The focus is immediately on his mental health — after all, he has a well-recorded history of mental health problems.

If he’d shouted “Allahu Akbar” or claimed allegiance to Islamic State, however, we’d be seeing very different coverage of the murder of Jo Cox — of the latest IS atrocity, inevitably “striking at the very heart of rural England”. The media aren’t quite as ready to talk about terrorism when it’s a white man involved in acts of political violence. For many in the media, white men, despite being the primary perpetrators of violence in Western countries, despite being identified as the current greatest terrorist threat in the United States, despite the long history of left-wing and nationalist political violence up until the 1980s in Europe, don’t do terrorism.

There is a definite politics of labelling at work in all this, because the way we name things is critical to how we frame events and the narratives that ensue. Like those forms of magic in which knowing the “real name” of an object or animal could bestow power over it, labelling is about control. Barack Obama this week criticised Republicans who complain that he doesn’t use the term “radical Islam” about terrorism."


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