Along with scare quotes, the left frequently uses another deceptive tactic to prove that “hate” causes the problems of minorities, particularly blacks: Publishing conspiracy theories about the “suspicions” among blacks that racist mischief is afoot when something bad happens to a black person.

A case in point: Salon‘s piece about the “memorial” to Eric Garner, the 350-pound street thug and veteran cigarette smuggler who died after cops in New York wrestled him to the ground when he refused to comply with their commands. He expired after speaking the now immortal words, “I can’t breathe!”

Salon picked up the story from The New York Post, which reported that Garner’s sidewalk “memorial,” a collection of flotsam, jetsam and candles, “burned to the ground.” It was already on the ground, but anyway, the Post offered readers this Tweet from Garner’s daughter, Erica: “Evil set my dad’s memorial on fire tonight, but cant erase his legacy. Rebuild 2morrow.” Young Erica wants an “investigation.”

Of course, there’s nothing to investigate, as police told the Post. A candle fell over and set the “memorial” on fire.

But the despicable Salon wants everyone to believe foul play was at work. “Eric Garner memorial burns on MLK Day,” the headline says. “The police say no foul play is suspected, but Garner’s daughter disagrees.” Salon repeats the claim in the story: “No criminal activity is suspected—police believe that a candle may have fallen and accidentally burned the memorial. Garner’s daughter, Erica, however, is suspicious.”

Undoubtedly, other blacks somewhere suffered the misfortune of a fire on MLK Day. Are all those fires “suspicious?”

Another “suspicious” sleuth is “Anonymous,” who tweeted this: “To the moron who destroyed the #EricGarner memorial tonight, you have failed. Thanks. We are stronger. #ICantBreathe.” Another “suspicious” sort tweeted this: “Tonight, on #MLKDay, #EricGarner‘s memorial was burned to the ground. #ReclaimMLK. No justice, no peace.”

It’s one thing for a couple of Twitter boobs to publicly flout their ignorance. It’s another for what purports to be a serious publication to validate that ignorance with blatant and thoroughly unjustified speculation.

But that’s what the anti-hate business is all about.