Time and again we’ve seen a dichotomy in media coverage and response: certain events get glossed over or ignored while other situations get worldwide immediate attention. In recent weeks there were suicide bombings in both Paris and Beirut, but the attacks in Paris seem to be getting more attention than any other act of violence perpetrated.
While it’s well known that America and France are allies, that France showed compassion and support to the United States in the aftermath of the terrorist attacks on Sept. 11, what does that mean for the other areas that have suffered terrorist attacks?
A few weeks ago in Beirut, two suicide attackers detonated twin bombs in the southern suburb of Burj al-Barajneh, killing 43 and injuring another 200 civilians. Yet there has been relatively little media coverage for this, little to no outcry for supporting the people in Beirut, and few people on social media claiming that their prayers are with Beirut, or that their hearts are aching for those who lost loved ones there.
It seems as if, to the media, the lives of these other people are not as worthy of coverage as the lives lost in Paris.
Incidents involving race, minorities, or what’s seen as a “common” thread of violence in the region are often not covered as thoroughly because the general population doesn’t find them as troubling. In an attack on a Kenyan university in April, gunmen murdered 147 students, but there was hardly any news coverage for this attack
The nation should not be so selective in what countries and victims of terror they choose to support. America may not have as strong of a political relationship with Beirut or Kenya as it does with Paris, but the tragedies that these places have endured and will endure should not be ignored. Compassion and support should not be limited to those countries or cities with whom America has built a political or sentimental relationship with. Some look to America for a sense of hope when incidents like this occur, but it doesn’t seem like America is thinking of each nation equally; it’s as if terror is only valid in countries we recognize as allies.