Don't miss this post at Big Pharaoh on the murders of Hossam Armanious, Amal Garas, and their two daughters in Jersey City, New Jersey. At this moment I don't have anything further to add to what I've already said; you can scroll down in this month's posts to read my earlier comments.
On second thought, just one or two points. Everyone agrees that we shouldn't "jump to conclusions" about the murders; that's fine by me. What troubles me is the MSM's evasiveness on the question of a possible religious hate killing. Americans have a right to question whether a religiously motivated hate crime occurred, without being implicitly accused of "jumping to conclusions" for wondering about it. If the motive turns out to have been something else - robbery, a random act of a psycopath, or a personal vendetta having nothing to do with religion - then I will be personally relieved, and you can bet I'll be among the first to post on it.
Judging from recent comments on GM's post, it seems that heated rhetoric was not uncommon at PalTalk. (I'm not personally familiar with the site myself.) If this is the case, then that might help to place the reported death threat against Armanious in some context; perhaps a PalTalk death threat is less serious than one wrapped around a brick thrown through one's window, for instance. So, extending the benefit of the doubt, perhaps death threats on PalTalk were so commonplace that this one merited no special attention. But then why didn't NYT and CNN bring out that point?
Or perhaps there was no death threat after all, and those reports (like the stories of the defaced cross tattoos) were in error? Then we should expect the media to report on the story in order to refute it. But instead we have silence. Why?
The editors of CNN and NYT must know that there are many among us - particularly in the blogosphere - who have come to view their reporting with suspicion, and who specifically worry that they are taking a "see no evil, hear no evil" attitude toward islamist violence. They can dispel this perception by proving that they take this threat seriously. If instead they continue to discount it and minimize it, they make themselves appear defensive - and cause the rest of us to wonder what they are hiding.
A death threat is always serious; a death threat followed by an actual murder is exceptionally serious. Even if the killings prove to have been unconnected with the threat, or with religion, the "news" media who knowingly withheld this relevant fact from their audiences are guilty of obscenely irresponsible behavior. That is the real crime.