The FBI recently released the 911 transcript of Omar Mateen call to the Orlando Police Dispatch. The initial release showed the transcript as, “I pledge of allegiance to [omitted]” and “I pledge allegiance to [omitted] may God protect him [in Arabic], on behalf of [omitted].”
After facing criticism for its redactions, the FBI and DOJ released the full transcript.
Why did FBI and DOJ feel the need to redact the transcripts? The official explanation: “We also did not want to provide the killer or terrorist organizations with a publicity platform for hateful propaganda.” Mentioning Omar Mateen’s name without mentioning ISIS would be like mentioning Dylann Roof without mentioning his racist beliefs. In fact, as a result of Roof’s actions in Charleston, we had a “national conversation” about the Confederate flag.
Why else would the FBI and DOJ redact the transcripts? Perhaps, because the Administration and the Democratic Party have a narrative they need to sell. If Orlando is about “gun violence” rather than terrorism, it gives Democrats the ability to do their famed virtue signaling, while acknowledging they will not solve the problem. Participating in “sit-ins” adds more humor than substance to the situation.
Perhaps another reason is that Orlando blew a hole in the identity-driven politics that provides the Democratic Party with its core voting constituencies. The left presents itself as fighting for “the little guy” and those they claim have been abused and discriminated against by “the system.” One of these victim groups is sexual minorities who are the victims of homophobia, discrimination, and other sorts of ‘bigotry’. Muslims constitute another group. Muslims, so the argument goes, are victims of Islamophobia, unjust profiling, and stereotyping.
The attack in Orlando shattered many of the left’s narratives. An intellectually honest person has to recognize that one of the greatest threats to the LGBT community is not Christian bakers or florists, but Islamic jihadists. One designated victim group was attacked by another designated victim groups and the federal government had to be shamed into releasing the 911 transcript that acknowledged this reality. Still, Attorney General Loretta Lynch can not bring herself to this simple conclusion.
By omitting any reference to ISIS in the initial release, the Administration could try to uphold its narrative — that we need more gun control laws and the need to combat “hate.” Meanwhile, the official Operation Inherent Resolve Twitter account boasts that the coalition against Omar Mateen’s pals, destroyed an “ISIL crane” and an “ISIL front-end loader.”
Orlando is bigger than “gun violence” and the with the perpetrator being an ISIS sympathizer, the narrative that we are one or two gun control laws away from eliminating similar shootings falls flat.
Alex Christy is a student at Western Washington University in Bellingham, Washington.