Major Networks Refused to Identify Race of NYC Subway Shooter During Citywide Manhunt


In the opening monologue of his Tuesday night show, Fox News’ Jesse Watters told viewers about something very disturbing he’d noticed in the liberal media’s coverage of the New York City subway shooting earlier that day: Many outlets had omitted the race of the suspect in their descriptions of him.

Considering that the New York Police Department had solicited the public’s assistance in identifying this man, the significance of his race was no small matter.

Watters began with a clip from a Tuesday afternoon news conference when New York Police Commissioner Keechant Sewell told attendees that the suspect “is being reported as a male black, approximately 5 feet 5 inches tall with a heavy build. He was wearing a green construction-type vest and a hooded sweatshirt.”

The Fox News host then featured several outlets’ reports on Sewell’s description of the suspect.

ABC News: “Sewell described the suspect as a man wearing a construction-type vest and a gray hooded sweatshirt. The suspect has a ‘heavy build’ and is believed to be about five feet five inches tall, Sewell said.”

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NBC News: “Police were looking for a man believed to be about 5-foot-5 and 180 pounds, who was wearing a green construction-type vest during the attack, officials and sources said.”

The New York Times: “Police were seeking a man with a heavy build who had been wearing a green construction vest and a gray sweatshirt.”

He also showed a clip of CNN’s John King, who did tell viewers the suspect’s race but ludicrously referred to him as a “black gentleman.” King said, “He is being described as a heavyset black gentleman approximately 5 foot 5 inches … “

If the suspect were white, do you think the media would have included his race in their description?

Yes, the man who had left at least 23 New Yorkers injured in a senseless shooting was a “black gentleman.”


All of this took place hours before the NYPD’s evening announcement that it had identified a person of interest in the case and published his photograph.

So, millions of New Yorkers were told to be on the lookout for a 5-foot-5, 180-pound male who had probably long since ditched his green vest and gray hoody.

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According to the U.S. Census Bureau, as of July 2021, 41.3 percent of the city’s population was white, 28.9 percent was Hispanic, 23.8 percent was black, 14.3 percent wasAsian and the rest were “other.” Needless to say, the search was still like looking for a needle in a haystack, but knowing the suspect was black would have helped narrow it down.

But for ABC News, NBC News and the Times, political correctness trumped the public’s safety, and that’s pretty egregious.

It just didn’t advance their narrative. Had the suspect been white, you can bet they would have reported it.

This is not the first time the liberal media have been hesitant to identify a suspect’s race.

In November, police identified Darrell E. Brooks, who is black, as the man who drove his SUV through a Christmas Parade in Waukesha, Wisconsin, killing six people and wounding dozens of others. Not only were the stars of the legacy media reluctant to reveal his race, but they tied themselves into knots to avoid any mention of the suspect.

CNN posted the following on Twitter: “Waukesha will hold a moment of silence today, marking one week since a car drove through a city Christmas parade, killing six people and injuring scores of others.”

That kind of thing would happen again a couple of weeks later when a black homeless man in New York City set fire to Fox News’ 50-foot Christmas tree. The headline in the New York Times? “Fox News Christmas Tree Catches Fire in Manhattan.”

Did it just spontaneously combust?

In March 2021, a young man shot 10 people dead in a Boulder, Colorado, grocery store. After seeing a photo of the suspect in which he looked white, liberals on social media vented their rage at this evil white man. Many of those tweets were quickly deleted when the shooting suspect was identified as Ahmad Al Aliwi Alissa, a Syrian-born Muslim.

At least in each of these three cases, there wasn’t a major manhunt underway.

The racial omission by the liberal media in the New York subway shooting was absurd and potentially dangerous. Unfortunately, some outlets stopped practicing real journalism a long time ago.

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Elizabeth writes commentary for The Western Journal and The Washington Examiner. Her articles have appeared on many websites, including MSN, RedState, Newsmax, The Federalist and RealClearPolitics. Please follow Elizabeth on Twitter or LinkedIn.
Elizabeth is a contract writer at The Western Journal. Her articles have appeared on many conservative websites including RedState, Newsmax, The Federalist,, HotAir, MSN and RealClearPolitics.

Please follow Elizabeth on Twitter.