The only thing that Juan Williams said that could possibly be construed as offensive is that he gets nervous when he sees identifiably Muslim people getting on a plane–a feeling that is no doubt shared by many millions of Americans. The tenor of his remarks was clearly that this was a regrettable association, along the lines–as Kevin reminds us–of that long-ago Jesse Jackson comment. Juan Williams is as about as anti-Muslim as Jesse Jackson is anti-black. Indeed, consider everything else he said. Williams went on to speak up in favor of those “people who want to somehow remind us all as President Bush did after 9/11, it’s not a war against Islam.” He warned against painting with too broad a brush: “If you said Timothy McVeigh, the Atlanta bomber, these people who are protesting against homosexuality at military funerals, very obnoxious, you don’t say first and foremost, we got a problem with Christians. That’s crazy.” He said that, in the German context, the problem is not Muslims, it’s “extremists.” And he cautioned against rhetoric that might incite anti-Muslim violence: “I don’t know what is in that guy’s head [the guy who slashed the New York City cabbie a few weeks ago]. But I’m saying, we don’t want in America, people to have their rights violated to be attacked on the street because they heard a rhetoric from Bill O’Reilly and they act crazy.” I would say it’s unbelievable that NPR would fire Williams over this, but, of course, it is believable, and shameful.
American government is supposed to look and sound like George Washington. What it actually looks and sounds like is Henry Hill from Goodfellas: bad suit, hand out, intoning the eternal mantra: “F*** you, pay me.” American government mostly works by interposition, standing between us, the free people at ... Read More
The Russians are engaged in “information warfare” against the United States. That was the big soundbite at Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein’s press conference Friday afternoon, announcing Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s election-meddling indictment against 13 Russians and three Russian ... Read More
It has become more urgent to ask: Why is there a special counsel in the Russia investigation? At this point, that question should be put to the Justice Department’s Office of Legal Counsel — in the federal government, it’s the lawyers’ lawyer. To get down to brass tacks: May the president of the United ... Read More
To understand the American gun-control debate, you have to understand the fundamentally different starting positions of the two sides. Among conservatives, there is the broad belief that the right to own a weapon for self-defense is every bit as inherent and unalienable as the right to speak freely or practice ... Read More
The Marvel Cinematic Universe (MCU) first infantilizes its audience, then banalizes it, and, finally, controls it through marketing. This commercial strategy, geared toward adolescents of all ages, resembles the Democratic party’s political manipulation of black Americans, targeting that audience through its ... Read More