CNN Blatantly Withholds Key Information About Synagogue Vandal Suspect


Correction: The original headline on this post incorrectly described the crime that occurred. The man in the case is accused of criminal mischief, not violence. The Conservative Tribune apologizes for the error.

If you’re a CNN watcher — and I know that isn’t everyone, given our readership — you probably heard about last week’s anti-Semitic attack in Brooklyn and immediately thought about some sort of alt-right and/or white supremacist nut job behind it.

The case involved a man who allegedly wrote hateful messages at the Union Temple of Brooklyn in New York City late last week.

“And a Brooklyn man has been arrested and charged with a hate crime for anti-Semitic messages found in a New York synagogue on Thursday,” anchor Fredricka Whitfield intoned.

“James Polite is also charged with criminal mischief and making graffiti.

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“Police say the messages were on four floors of the Union Temple Of Brooklyn,” Whitfield added. “Mayor Bill de Blasio calls the incident deeply disturbing to all New Yorkers.”

Now, you can make several inferences from that brief report.

Aside from having a tragically Dickensian name for this kind of sickening act, the average viewer might think Polite was probably a far-right bigot, the kind of loner who supported fringe figures like Richard Spencer or David Duke.

He probably posted on Gab or 4chan. Heck, you could probably even throw a Proud Boys membership in there.

Did you guess what happened with with synagogue vandalism?

All of that sounds very apropos, given the crime. All of that sounds like what the media would like you to think if you were filling in the blanks. And all of that is very, very wrong.

See, as The Daily Wire pointed out, Polite was actually a Democratic activist. He’d volunteered for Barack Obama’s presidential campaigns. He’d even held an internship with City Hall combatting hate crimes and was the subject of a New York Times profile last year about a foster kid turning his life around.

That wasn’t all. According to The Daily Caller, he’d been “informally adopted” by a Jewish couple. His social media profile said he attended Brandeis University, the nation’s premier Jewish institution of higher learning.

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However, the 26-year-old Polite seemed to have developed very serious issues with both America and Jewish Americans.

The Daily Caller reported that one day before the vandalism at the Union Temple of Brooklyn, Polite burned an American flag on his Facebook profile.

That same night, police say, he set fires at “seven shuls and yeshivas in Williamsburg,” all caught on security camera.

For good measure, he also posted this status update the day before the Union Temple vandalism: “A dream with eyes wide open. civil war is here. Nobody gotta die. Mexico, latin America, carribean vs. Jew n—– pigs. One person touch me this whole s— a smoking.”

The next day, he allegedly scrawled hateful graffiti saying “Die Jew Rats” and “Hitler” all over the Brooklyn temple.

Even if it’s bad enough to leave that out of a short television report, CNN could say that it was hampered by time constraints. So what about the network’s website, where it could expound upon the suspect’s history?

While CNN did mention Polite’s internship helping combat hate crimes, the article didn’t mention anything about his association with Democratic campaigns or his activism.

Instead, he was described as a young man with “troubles.” Apparently, the politics of disturbed people only matter when those politics are conservative.

Please do not misunderstand me: I doubt his politics had anything to do with this, the same way that I don’t think the politics of any of the other alleged wastes of carbon we’ve seen accused of hate crimes these past few weeks had to do with their misdeeds.

However, if you want to find virulent anti-Semitism on the left, you don’t have to look hard. Linda Sarsour, BDS, the enablers of Louis Farrakhan — one could go on for an entire doctoral thesis.

But there’s the rub. CNN is more than happy, if the crazy person in question can be even tangentially linked to conservatism, to bring up the political question.

When the causes are liberal, and when the politics are progressive, it’s a whole different story.

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C. Douglas Golden is a writer who splits his time between the United States and Southeast Asia. Specializing in political commentary and world affairs, he's written for Conservative Tribune and The Western Journal since 2014.
C. Douglas Golden is a writer who splits his time between the United States and Southeast Asia. Specializing in political commentary and world affairs, he's written for Conservative Tribune and The Western Journal since 2014. Aside from politics, he enjoys spending time with his wife, literature (especially British comic novels and modern Japanese lit), indie rock, coffee, Formula One and football (of both American and world varieties).
Morristown, New Jersey
Catholic University of America
Languages Spoken
English, Spanish
Topics of Expertise
American Politics, World Politics, Culture