“Jackson crossed paths with Timothy Caughman, a black man who was rummaging through garbage on a sidewalk in Manhattan’s Hell’s Kitchen neighborhood.”–Reuters
“Coughman [sic] lived in transitional housing on West 36th Street that serves people with HIV/AIDS. Praxis Housing Initiatives holds a contract with the city. He has 11 prior arrests, including for marijuana, assault, resisting arrest and menacing.” —New York Daily News
“Jackson served as a specialist in the U.S. Army until 2012, and was deployed in Afghanistan for nearly a year beginning in December 2010…He was awarded several medals for his conduct.”
These are excerpts from two separate media outlets, both reporting the stabbing death of a man on a New York City street last week.
Which of the two men do you think was stabbed, Caughman or Jackson?
If you guessed Jackson, you are mistaken. Does the fact that Caughman was black make any difference? Should it?
If the victim of this crime had been white and the perpetrator black or Middle Eastern, likely this incident would be garnering more coverage in the corporate cable media. However, Timothy Caughman’s murder last week at the hands of white supremacist James Harris Jackson is just another example of implicit racial bias embedded in our mainstream media.
According to police, 28 year old James Harris Jackson from Maryland boarded a bus to New York City Friday for the sole purpose of killing black men. Bill Aubrey, a deputy chief at the New York Police Department, said Harris chose New York because:
“It is the media capital of the world and he wanted to make a statement.”
Sixty-six year old Timothy Caughman was his victim, stabbed with a 26-inch sword. Minutes later, Caughman staggered into a nearby police station, bleeding from the chest and back. He was taken to a nearby hospital, where he later died. Police say Jackson, an ex-military member of a white supremacist hate group, asked police to arrest him, warning he would attack again.
Bill Aubrey told a news conference:
“It was revealed that the attack on Timothy Caughman was clearly racially motivated. It is believed that he [Jackson] was specifically intending to target male blacks.”
We find no reports of a prior arrest record for Jackson. We find no descriptions about where or how he lived. There is nothing beyond a brief allusion to his military service. We know Caughman was poor, lived in transitional housing with HIV/AIDS patients, and had an extensive arrest record for drugs, assault, resisting arrest, and menacing.
In last week’s Daily News piece that reported the incident between Jackson and Caughman, instead of delving into Jackson’s history, the writers chose to bring up a two-year-old case of a black man who also drove up from Baltimore, to kill police:
“In December 2014, Ismaaiyl Brinsley traveled to the city from Baltimore and assassinated Police Officers Wenjian Liu and Rafael Ramos, were in the car near Myrtle and Tompkins Avenues in Bedford-Stuyvesant. Brinsley had made anti-police statements on social media prior to the murders.”
This really has nothing to do with last week’s murder. These incidents have nothing in common other than their location and the fact that perpetrators were both from Maryland.
James Harris Jackson is a white supremacist who traveled to New York to kill black men. That makes this a hate crime. Period. End of story.
Featured image from YouTube video.