For those following the Pizzagate scandal it has been a fascinating few days. On Sunday, 28-year-old Edgar Maddison Welch walked into Comet Ping Pong pizza with an assault rifle and fired a shot into the floor. For around six weeks, the mainstream media has ignored Pizzagate even though Pizzagate has trended across social media for all of that time. The few media outlets who had covered Pizzagate dismissed it as lunacy. The BBC, the Washington Post, and the New York Times all ran editorial pieces dismissing Pizzagate but most simply ignored it.
Suddenly, after this incident, the media world is in a feeding frenzy over Pizzagate. Numerous outlets across the world are suddenly running Pizzagate stories, and their conclusions seem to be unanimous. Pizzagate is fake news. Vox claims that Pizzagate is the work of “alt-right trolls, Trump supporters and white supremacists.”
Admittedly, Vox does mention the Podesta emails, but there is absolutely no attempt to explain the language used therein. Nor do they acknowledge that the original allegations that led to Pizzagate were made by WikiLeaks, not on the Pizzagate Reddit or Voat platforms.
Craig Silverman at Buzzfeedcalls Pizzagate both “bizarre” and “unhinged” and claims that the whole thing was kicked off by “a white supremacist posing as a Jewish lawyer.”
A scroll through Goldberg’s Twitter feed does reveal some pretty vile material, but Silverman seems to think that a Tweet with just 6,500 retweets is responsible for beginning the worldwide Pizzagate investigation. Perhaps oddly none of the news stories, that dismiss Pizzagate out of hand, include any analysis of John Podesta’s emails. The language used in those emails can only be described as strange and out of context. If there is a perfectly innocent explanation for those emails, why has nobody justified their content?
So Is Pizzagate ‘Fake News’?
The New Yorkerdismisses Pizzagate as an “enduring and dangerous lie,” and says that “Pizzagate is being promoted by politically motivated cynics who don’t actually believe it.” Rather than explain why Pizzagate is “fake news” the article simply states that it is a response designed to lessen the impact of video “that showed Trump bragging about grabbing the genitals of women he had just met.”
Oddly nobody seems to recognize that the election was a month ago, and Donald Trump won. If Pizzagate was just a damage limitation exercise by elements of the Trump support why has it not simply faded away?
The Washington Post has used an opinion piece to declare that Pizzagate is “the new normal in Trump’s America.”
“There was a time when threats against journalists, like threats of any sort of political violence, were exceedingly rare. But in Trump’s America, such threats are neither rare nor idle.
“If you doubt that, consider the events in recent days at Comet Ping Pong, the family pizza place in Northwest Washington I’ve been frequenting with my daughter ever since she was a toddler a decade ago. Lately, the owner and staff at Comet — and those of other businesses on the block — have been getting death threats, spurred by radio host Alex Jones, a conspiracy theorist with close ties to the president-elect.”
CNN writes that “Pizzagate” is an invention that created “a way for individuals with a searing dislike for Clinton and her allies to eschew any idea of reasonable disagreement.”
The Daily Beast makes much of the fact that the Pizzagate gunman, Edgar Maddison Welch, seemingly “liked” Alex Jones’ Facebook page. They also claim that Pizzagate is “easily disprovable.”
“The conspiracy is untrue and easily disprovable. For example, the sex ring is supposed to be run out of the [ Comet Ping Pong] basement, but the owner told the BBC, ‘We don’t even have a basement.'”
They say nothing of a previous story when James Alefantis told Metro Weekly that Comet Ping Pong had a basement in which he stored his own produce.
“Well, we make everything from scratch. Other restaurants, even good restaurants, will, like, not roast their own peppers.
“Like our sauce, we harvest a whole crop of organic tomatoes, 10 tons of tomatoes every year. Can them all, store them in the basement, have like a harvest party when it gets loaded in.”
It seems that most media agencies dismissing Pizzagate as fantasy have ignored the fact that Andrew Breitbart was accusing John Podesta of being a pedophile as long ago as 2011.
There is no denying that Pizzagate is a bizarre and fantastic story. The very idea that Podesta and the Clintons head up a satanic pedophile network out of Comet Ping Pong is preposterous. Yet it seems that most of the mainstream media is content to brand Pizzagate as fantasy, based solely on the fact that James Alefantis says that Comet Ping Pong “doesn’t have a basement.”
If there is a shred of truth to Pizzagate, it would be the most horrific and disturbing scandal of the century. Pizzagate “citizen investigators” clearly believe that the mainstream media have their “eyes wide shut” when it comes to Pizzagate. Admittedly, Pizzagate asks us to consider a subject that is just too dark for most people to contemplate. The thought that the rich and the political elite could be involved in the ritual abuse of children is just too horrible to consider.
Yet Jeffrey Epstein, Jimmy Savile, and numerous others, in the last few years have shown us that child abuse is a huge and seemingly growing problem.
In the internet age saying that “Pizzagate is fake news” because the mainstream media say so, just won’t wash. High-class and thorough investigative journalism may yet prove that Pizzagate is indeed fantasy, but until someone presents thorough and verifiable evidence that Pizzagate is no more than a right-wing plot, then citizen investigators will keep digging.
[Featured Image by Jose Luis Magana/AP]