I just watched the Trevor Noah interview. You know which one: where he interviews conservative reporter Tom Lahren. A whole lot of people at school were talking about it: how this ranting, raving millennial conservative has managed to garner more online views than most mainstream media sources, including CNN.
But the problem is, she’s a Trumpist, in every sense of the word. All she does is rant. And talk about despicable she thinks Black Lives Matter is, and how Colin Kapernick should be grateful that he’s living in the U.S. And that’s considered news, because it gives a hard-on to people in the alt-right. Never mind talking about Republicans. This is even beyond them. This is a lunatic fringe of society that is slowly being legitimized by its appeal to radicalism.
Look at Trump’s cabinet. He’s got Steven Bannon as minister of propaganda, the previous executive chair of Breitbart News, a media outlet that caters to the far, or “alt right”. They have been accused of racist, homophobia, misogyny, and anti-semitism. Yet the company’s founder is now serving in an executive cabinet position.
We see the slow legitimization of inflammatory rhetoric, both through a Trumpian election, and the Trumpian nature of radical media outlets. Recall the fake media controversy on Facebook. Well, a lot of people took that at face value. And that’s the problem: the more inflammatory, rather than objective, the more accepted.
During the Trevor Noah interview, Lahren discussed how she believes she stands for an unheard and unrepresented segment of America: middle class whites living somewhere between the east and west coast. She spoke on how she believes Black Lives Matter is a hate group, based on a few people who hold up signs saying “Fuck the Police.” But then, when Noah brought up the racial hatred and intolerance displayed by many Trump supporters, she said we shouldn’t judge an entire group of people, based on the opinions of several. Even when they include the KKK. Pretty hypocritical.
She doesn’t seem to get the point. She lives in an insulated bubble. The problem is, a lot of people are the same way. And they lift her up. They give her views. They amplify her voice to the masses. And the sufferers: CNN, New York Times, Washington Post. Their numbers are slowly but surely dwindled by a woman who can rant nonsensically, yet sensibly enough for the audience she speaks to.
Will Tomi Lahren ever run for president? I hope not. But she’s already capitalized on her media presence. The elevation of her and people like Steve Bannon, along with all these fake news outlets proliferating on Facebook is very unsettling. What’s unsettling is that they seem to be giving people what they want: untempered anger unleashed against all the minorities who are slowly eroding America because of their insistence on basic human rights. Fire seems to power this new form of media, rather than actual investigation.
Tomi Lahren makes a habit of screaming “Muslim!” every time there’s a terrorist attack. Just watch her videos. Or else she shouts “Racist!” whenever black people protest their mistreatment, whether it be through violence or nonviolence. And this is considered news. It must be, considering her 66 million views. And only at 24: she’s a rising star, whether you like it or not. And that is pretty damn scary. Cause it paves the way for more on the radical right to make their case in the media: not out of objectivism, but cold-hearted antipathy.