Two parallel strands of reports about violence are running across the American landscape in the days after Donald Trump’s shocking election to the presidency.
On one hand, there are reports of pro-Trump violence.
A female Muslim student at the University of Louisiana claimed two white men wearing Trump hats ripped off her hijab and stole her wallet the day after the election. Gay Canadian filmmaker Chris Ball claimed he was severely beaten and bloodied by Trump supporters in Santa Monica, California, shortly after the election.
The young Muslim woman later admitted to police she had fabricated her story, and evidence of Chris Ball’s attack has not been confirmed by local police or hospitals.
On the other hand, very visible anti-Trump demonstrations rocked many cities across America in the three days after the election. While many demonstrators were peaceful, many others were violent.
In Portland, a few members of an angry crowd vandalized 19 cars at a dealership before heading to a different part of town to smash the windows of several businesses. According to USA Today, demonstrators met with an anarchist group, after which they vandalized buildings, kicked cars and knocked out power.
Portland police said the crowd threw objects at officers, who responded by pushing the crowd back, then using flash-bang devices, pepper spray, rubber projectiles and tear gas to force the crowd to disperse. Police made at 26 arrests.
In Los Angeles, hundreds of protesters blocked a busy highway, bringing traffic to a standstill. Those protests were mostly peaceful, but some people threw bottles, launched fireworks and vandalized property, according to the Los Angeles Times.
Denver’s streets, too, were blocked by anti-Trump protesters.
The anti-Trump violence has not been confined to mass demonstrations. Video also surfaced of a group of young black men in Chicago beating up a white man because he supposedly voted for Trump. The attackers even drove away in the man’s vehicle while his hand was stuck in the window, dragging him down the street.
A California high school girl who supported Trump also got beaten up by a girl who accused her of hating Mexicans. Cell phone videos captured that incident.
Colin Flaherty, an independent reporter and author of “White Girl Bleed a Lot,” expects to see more of the same in the years to come.
“On the one hand, we have these fairy tales of violence from this white-on-black violence, this Trump-on-black violence, this Trump-on-Muslim violence that has turned out to be, in every single case we’ve seen so far, either a hoax or totally unsubstantiated,” Flaherty told WND.
“But the real ones, the ones we do see, the ones the papers and the media don’t talk about, are the ones where the Trump supporters are victims of violence, and that could come from white protesters or it could just come from casual interactions with black people who don’t like white people who voted for Trump. That’s what we see now, and I don’t see any reason why that would stop.”
Going forward, Flaherty does not expect the media to be any fairer to Trump during his presidency than they were during his campaign.
“The big lesson post-Trump is that every single reporter who misreported Trump from the day he announced – they misreported his ideas, they misreported his viability, they misreported everything,” he said. “There’s no humility there. They don’t care. They just picked up the day after the election as if they had not totally misreported the biggest story of our lifetimes.
“So they’re going to continue, and as a result the people they write for or report for are going to lose more and more audience, like the New York Times, the Washington Post, CNN, MSNBC, and the people who run these media outlets don’t seem to care that they’re responsible for misreporting stuff day in and day out. It doesn’t seem to matter to them, and people are just turning away from these places.”