Reports have been flying about a game called "Knockout," in which teens punch innocent passersby for fun. And conservative outlets are blasting the politically correct-minded mainstream media for neglecting to mention the supposed fact that African-American teens are behind the attacks, writes Robin Abcarian in the LA Times. In fact, racially motivated attacks are overwhelmingly (72%) against black Americans, and these outlets are just contributing to "the ongoing demonization of black teenagers," Abcarian notes—whether it's the Scottsboro Boys or five teens jailed for a 1989 Central Park rape they didn't commit. Back then, the Daily News warned of a trend called "wilding."
"News flash: Teenage boys in groups can act like jerks, sometimes malicious jerks. That goes for all races," she writes. A juvenile crime expert addresses videos that have emerged of the attacks: "It's always dangerous to create a 'trend' out of isolated but vivid instances," he says. Indeed, police aren't even certain the "game" exists—though a GOP New York assemblyman seems to have few doubts, calling for a "Knockout Assault Deterrent Act" that would result in teens being tried as adults and facing sentences as long as 25 years. "That, friends, is how you institutionalize racism," Abcarian writes. Click for her full column.