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    Juan Williams Fired For Acknowledging Negative Stereotypes

    Juan Williams Fired For Acknowledging Negative Stereotypes

    Why does Juan Williams negatively stereotype oppressed minorities?  Here’s what he said about crime in the inner city:

    There is nothing more painful to me at this stage in my life than to walk down the street and hear footsteps and start thinking about robbery. Then look around and see somebody white and feel relieved…. After all we have been through. Just to think we can’t walk down our own streets, how humiliating.

    Oh, I’m sorry, that was Jesse Jackson.

    NPR just fired Juan Williams for making a similar statement about Muslims on airplanes.  Williams, a frequent commentator on FoxNews who is ruthlessly fair [added: in criticizing left and right], has been a target of groups such as Media Matters, which is receiving a $1 million donation from George Soros to go to war against FoxNews.

    Williams had the temerity — just like Jackson on the issue of inner city crime — to acknowledge that stereotypes affect how he views the issue of terrorism and people dressed in “Muslim garb,” but he also acknowledged that such stereotypes were not fair:

    [youtube=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GAfGKVK8PyE?fs=1]

    Not suprisingly, the mainstream media is coming to NPR’s defense.  The Washington Post, in a supposed news story, calls Williams’ remarks “anti-Muslim,” linking to an edited video posted by Think Progress (which also is at war with FoxNews) which cut off Williams’ comments, to delete where Williams pointed out “it’s not a war against Muslims.”

    The hypocrisy of NPR is enormous, but more important, counterproductive.  Unlike Helen Thomas’ comments about Jews in Israel, Williams did not tell Muslims to get out of the U.S.  Williams did the exact opposite of Thomas; Williams acknowledged the reality of negative stereotypes — which we all have to varying degrees — as a means of informing his own view.

    A more mature NPR would use this as a discussion point, not a firing offense.  But then again, NPR is not mature, it is a highly politicized organization with an agenda, masquerading as a neutral voice for the public. 

    Many of those defending NPR’s decision note that Williams was not sufficiently progressive for NPR, and had it coming to him:

    In my view, Williams has lacked credibility for years. He’s a conservative who pretends to be progressive on some issues. NPR has known this and struggled with it for a long time, yet they kept him on, demoting him from journalist to “analyst” (i.e. pundit.) Good for NPR for finally getting rid of him. Better late than never.

    This firing was about politics, and taking down a prominent black FoxNews commentator who did not fit the progressive model:

    What Juan Williams did is very similar to why the Left hates Sarah Palin, other conservative women and conservative homosexuals. He played against the progressive stereotype of himself, revealing a balanced and too candid humanity within. For a moment, in essence, he became too real…

    Well, if Juan Williams is impacted by the behavior of Muslims, then progressives – and NPR is that, can’t lecture white America that their concerns are based on hate, religious intolerance, bigotry or xenophobia. Juan Williams didn’t drop his mask and reveal any Islamophobia last night on Fox. What he did was rip the mask off the tactics NPR and other progressives, including the liberal media, use to lecture America and prevent an honest discussion of the threat from Islam.

    Just more proof that NPR will not be the dominant force in news by 2020.

    Update:  Here is how Glenn Greenwald — who uses the slur “Israel Firsters” to attack American Jews who strongly support Israel — frames the issue:

    On Tuesday night, Williams went on O’Reilly’s program to perform his standard, long-time function on Fox — offering himself up as the supposed “liberal” defending Fox News commentators (and other right-wing extremists) from charges of bigotry and otherwise giving cover to incendiary right-wing attacks…

    That’s right.  Media Matters, Think Progress, and Glenn Greenwald were just waiting for the excuse to take down Williams, and they found it by using out-of-context statements to label Williams a bigot.

    I think Bernie Goldberg has it right:

    “So Juan Williams is fired for saying something the liberals at NPR find controversial?” Goldberg said. “One more piece of evidence that liberals have forgotten how to be liberal.”

    Goldberg continued: “These are the kind of people who brag about how open-minded they are — as long as you agree with them. And here’s the dirty little secret: lots and lots of liberals feel the same way Juan does when they get on an airplane. And a lot of those liberals work at NPR. Juan’s ‘crime’ was saying it out loud.”

    Also, via Doug Mataconis, Morning Joe points out the full context of Williams’ comments, which as described by Mataconis, were far from bigoted:

    To call Williams’ remarks an example of bigotry, as some lefty blogs have done, strikes me as simply absurd once you watch the whole segment. In fact, it seems to me that Williams was making, in a different context, pretty much the same point that Shirley Sherrod was about how we all need to get beyond our irrational prejudices.

    http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/32545640

    Via HotAir, The Right Scoop has the full six minute segment, with this analysis by Ed Morrissey:

    With the exception of the very beginning, when Williams made the statement that so offended NPR, Williams and Mary Katharine [Ham] took a position mainly opposite of Bill O’Reilly, with both stating that the distinction between extremist Muslims and the rest was an important one to make, Mary Katharine more for strategic purposes, and Williams on journalistic grounds.

    But then again, Williams was arguing for tolerance, and that apparently violates NPR’s “editorial standards and practices.” Clearly, NPR only wants opinion journalists that agree with the opinions of NPR, and I mean totally agree. An NPR opinion journalist had better not admit to having a normal human reaction about potential for terrorism nine years after 3,000 Americans got killed by radical Muslims on commercial air flights, or else. The rest of NPR’s cast just got an object lesson about the range of opinion tolerated by management.

    But, hey, that’s NPR’s prerogative. After all  it’s not as if they’re government sponsored in any way.  Oh, wait …

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    Comments


    Trochilus, thanks for reading my blog, but I know the difference between Bernie and Jonah … and Jeffrey and Whoopi and just plain Goldberg, too. But thanks again for reading. By the way, saying someone is half wrong isn't having them firmly in your sights. My laughter was side-splitting because I don't think Bernie is ever right. Care to find me another example?

    This is the second time I’ve seen the liberal yo-yos take off on Juan Williams when he has “overstepped” his bounds and spoken a truth that was against the “party line”.

    I have said more than once in the past that a government run co-opted media is but one step towards the Soviet style dictatorship that we witnessed with the old USSR. This is beyond Big Brother. This is not only the squashing of Free Speech, but is in fact taking away one of our most sacred rights. And he wasn’t even on an NPR show!

    This Political Correctness, which is nothing more than a Gestapo style propaganda issue has to stop!
    I for one do not agree with some of Mr. Williams stands. however, he has never been afraid to call it as he sees it and in this case he was correct! To be fired for relating the truth is beyond everything we hold sacred in this country.

    Kudos to Mr. Williams for daring to stand up to the kind of censorship that is so warmly welcome by leftist Soviet and NAZI style governments!

    This is just another nail in the progressive coffin! I have not always agreed with Mr. Williams, but in all fairness he seems to be the most sane out of the whole NPR bunch, what a shame. NPR USED to be a voice for all the people, but leaning more to the right than the left I have not listened to any broadcasts in years….

    The real hypocrisy of political correctness, especially in this case, is that major media organizations have a policy, at least de facto, that they won't offend Muslim sensibilities.

    But the Mohammed cartoons and the South Park episode showed that a major reason if not the primary reason was that they were afraid for the safety of their employees.

    These policies are, if not written down, acted upon and generally well understood. So most media corporations have policy that is based on "Islamophobia." They aren't being politically correct out of courtesy, it's because they think precisely what Williams said, only worse.

    Norwegian Shooter . . . as you may well be aware, "never" envisions a long term run.

    But why not stick to the extended comment that Bernie Goldberg made, much of which was conveniently laid out here by Ed Morrissey at Hot Air?

    Rather than just treating us to your somewhat juvenile version of the LOL canard, why not explain to us exactly why Bernie Goldberg is wrong?

    If, as you say, he is always why wrong, that should be easy-as-pie for you!

    On the other hand, I think what Bernie said made a lot of sense. In some respects, what he said is thematically consistent with many other thoughtful comments posted here. And there is no doubt that the rat-a-tat-tat laughing jag on your part has proved nothing to the contrary.

    You were amusing you.

    Bernie notes that, over the years, American liberalism has in many ways abandoned its legitimate past struggles over principle, in favor of a downright corrupting of our public dialogue. Instead of defending "free speech" and engaging in public debate as they used to, they now prefer to poison the dialogue and end any discussion.

    To me, this is especially so given the oft- repeated and false race card charges that have been frequently and repeatedly directed at tea party protesters.

    And there is certainly no better single example of that than the false and vicious race-baiting claims made by Congressman Andre Carson, Indiana Democrat, a member of the Congressional Black caucus, about tea party protesters at the time of the vote on ObamaCare. Those phony claims of his were an obvious attempt to illegitimately poison the public debate over forced healthcare.


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