The New York Times wasted no time in jumping to conclusions about Anders Behring Breivik, the Norwegian who staged two deadly attacks in Oslo last weekend, claiming in the first two paragraphs of one story that he was a “gun-loving,” “right-wing,” “fundamentalist Christian,” opposed to “multiculturalism.”

It may as well have thrown in “Fox News-watching” and “global warming skeptic.”

This was a big departure from the Times’ conclusion-resisting coverage of the Fort Hood shooting suspect, Maj. Nidal Malik Hasan​. Despite reports that Hasan shouted “Allahu Akbar!” as he gunned down his fellow soldiers at a military medical facility in 2009, only one of seven Times articles on Hasan so much as mentioned that he was a Muslim.

Of course, that story ran one year after Hasan’s arrest, so by then, I suppose, the cat was out of the bag.

In fact, however, Americans who jumped to conclusions about Hasan were right and New York Times reporters who jumped to conclusions about Breivik were wrong.

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