Juan Williams’ Irrational Fear of Non-Terrorists

I’m happy to see Juan Williams and his crappy analysis gone from NPR. But the whole ruckus over Juan Williams’ firing from NPR over his admission that he does a double take when he sees people dressed in obviously Muslim garb is missing a key point.

Williams says he gets anxious when he sees people in Muslim garb.

WILLIAMS: Wednesday afternoon, I got a message on my cell phone from Ellen Weiss who is the head of news at NPR asking me to call. When I called back, she said, “What did you say, what did you mean to say?” And I said, “I said what I meant to say” which is that it’s an honest experience that went on in an airport and I see people who are in Muslim garb who identify themselves as first and foremost as Muslims, I do a double take. I have a moment of anxiety or fear given what happened on 9/11. That’s just a reality. And she went on to say, “Well that crosses the line.” And I said, “What line is that?”

And she went on to somehow suggest that I had made a bigoted statement. And I said “that’s not a bigoted statement. In fact, in the course of this conversation with O’Reilly, I said that we have as Americans an obligation to protect constitutional rights of everyone in the country and to make sure we don’t have any outbreak of bigotry but that there’s a reality. You cannot ignore what happened on 9/11 and you cannot ignore the connection to Islamic radicalism and you can’t ignore the fact that what has been recently said in court with regard to this is the first drop of blood in a Muslim war on America. [my emphasis]

Of course, the “reality” that Williams is missing is that when Islamic terrorists get onto planes to try to blow them up, they don’t dress in Muslim garb. On the contrary, we know that Islamic terrorists make sure they appear as “normal” as possible by shaving and dressing as mainstream Americans would. Moreover, Islamic terrorists are increasingly recruiting people who look like westerners.

The last people you should be afraid of on a plane are those self-identifying by their dress as Muslims.

Maybe this is a side-effect of hanging out at with the stupid people and bigots at Fox News for so many years, this really irrational sense of what we should fear. But no matter whether you consider Williams’ statement itself bigoted or not, it is undeniably stupid. Really stupid. And on that basis alone, NPR is justified in firing Williams.

Update: George Stephanopoulos asks Williams whether he should have admitted he was being irrational.

  1. Mary says:

    Lovely. It’s hard to say whether that Magooi

    I liked the way he used a reference from a criminal about war and Muslims to help support his gut.

  2. JasonLeopold says:

    This post is an example of why this blog is my first stop every morning and why I make multiple visits here everyday. I’ll be pointing people to this post often.

  3. matutinal says:

    It is sad but telling that someone like Williams with such a childish view of the world is given such a bountifully-funded platform.

    I also find it interesting to observe the sudden flowering, like blue-green algae, of right-wing self-styled “NPR free speech” advocates. We didn’t seem to hear much from them in 1994 when published author and death-row inmate Mumia Abu Jamal was summarily fired by NPR before he even began a scheduled series of commentaries, because of a single protest by the Philadelphia Fraternal Order of Police.

    • MaryCh says:

      Mr. Williams’s firing also requires a vociferous response in order to keep the Fair and Balanced figleaf in place for all those for whom Fox is ‘the most trusted’ news source.

      And cregan @6, Rev. Jackson’s earlier comment also came to mind for me, too. There’s a whole self-criticism of my own group thing going on that isn’t in Mr. Williams’s words.

      From the whole of his exchange with Mr. O’Reilly, Mr. Williams seems at least a little aware of his own irrationality. This self-awareness is outweighed by his obliviousness to the effect of his furthering the ‘scary Muslims’ meme. He later makes the distinction between the radical tiny minority and the rest of Muslims, that’s a lost footnote in a fearmongering discussion on a fearmongering network.

      • cregan says:

        At least Williams has the guts to admit he has some irrational fears as opposed to many who like sitting on the sidelines handing out critiques of others and try to maintain how perfect and free of irrational tendencies they are.

        Again, any technique that helps avoid looking at their own fears and failings.

        I would fully expect to get one of those answers like people give in job interviews on their biggest weakness; “It’s that I work too hard.” Any fear that they know others would accept. Not the one, yes, that one, that they know others would not accept.

        I guess that’s between you and your psychiatrist.

        • bmaz says:

          I care less about this one instance of poor thought control by Williams than that he is just generally a limp dick worthless commenter of little real value that somehow has made a living as a “liberal” even though he is not. He deserved to be fired because he was useless as much as this stupid episode.

          • jdmckay0 says:

            I care less about this one instance of poor thought control by Williams than that he is just generally a limp dick worthless commenter of little real value that somehow has made a living as a “liberal” even though he is not. He deserved to be fired because he was useless as much as this stupid episode.

            Well said. :) Wish they’d shoosh out Mara Liason on the same grounds while they’re at it.

        • robbep says:

          He is being punished for being honest and worst of all he is not considered left enough for some of us on the left. All of these enlightned individuals on this site think the the same thing Juan does when they board a plane and see a group of muslims on it. They just dont have the guts to admit it for fear of being thought racist. We need to quit the fake color blind we are all the same bullshit and admit we have differences and its human to have predjudices and misconceptions. Does it make me a racist as black man to have doubts when I go into a public place and the confederate flag is on display? Progressives are getting as silly as right wingers.

          • newtonusr says:

            All of these enlightned individuals on this site think the the same thing Juan does when they board a plane and see a group of muslims on it. They just dont have the guts to admit it for fear of being thought racist.

            This is the most uninformed, libelous and presumptions statement I have read today, and that is saying something.

            • GlenJo says:

              Update: George Stephanopoulos asks Williams whether he should have admitted he was being irrational

              People with brains are pretty sure terrorists disguise themselves. Liberals or conservatives got nothing to do with it. Think about it.

  4. cregan says:

    Glad to see this post. Did you know that the other poser Jesse Jackson who said some years back that when he heard foot steps behind him at night he got worried, but that if he looked over his shoulder and saw the foot steps belonged to white people he was relieved.

    I’m also glad to know that empty wheel people are free of irrational fears or anxiety and are generally perfect in this regard.

    This however, goes along with the coming narrative after Nov.2, “We lost because of the stupidity of the voters and their irrational fears.” They were scared and not thinking straight. Unlike when the meltdown first occurred and we all thought we might be going down the crapper in 2008 and the voters were thinking clearly.

    Whatever fits our needs to make sure we never have to look at our own failings, that is what works.

  5. BayStateLibrul says:

    Just like the Pats trading Moss, this was the right moment to discard


    Like Belichek and Kraft, they made the correct executive decision.

  6. cregan says:

    Aside from all that, NPR, while I enjoy listening to my local station, just demonstrated an imbecility unmatched in quite some time. Especially the CEO.

    I’ve seen some say it pulls some mask off Williams, but it totally pulled the mask off NPR. And, the face under is pretty ugly.

    • bmaz says:

      Baloney. NPR should have let the asshat go long ago. Using this to crack at NPR is nothing but a ruse for a desire to crack at NPR.

  7. Mary says:

    Oh, cregan – there’s a difference between saying you know it’s irrational and trying to defend it as being rational and that’s the difference. One Marcy revealed with a pretty quick and deep slice.

    I will say, though, that the apart from exposing how stupid William’s professed fear of “muslim garb” is – imo the really bothersome things that he said were not that. Here’s the main quote:

    I’m not a bigot. You know the kind of books I’ve written about the civil rights movement in this country. But when I get on the plane, I got to tell you, if I see people who are in Muslim garb and I think, you know, they are identifying themselves first and foremost as Muslims, I get worried. I get nervous. Now, I remember also that when the Times Square bomber was at court, I think this was just last week. He said the war with Muslims, America’s war is just beginning, first drop of blood. I don’t think there’s any way to get away from these facts.

    A. He says he’s not a bigot. Almost all of us are bigots to some extent, but the difference between an NPR journalist and a FOX Pundit appears to be the ability to recognize it when it is looking back at them in the mirror. Instead, Williams tries to pull off this “Foxian” argument:

    B. “You know the kind of books I’ve written about the civil rights movement in this country.” Oh, yes, well, there you go. How can you be bigotted against Muslims when you’ve written, as an African American, about the struggles of African Americans? That’s mental mush.

    C. EW has already dealt with the mental mushery of him being afraid of “Muslim garb”

    D. Then came this – which was the penultimate biggie to me: “Now, I remember also that when the Times Square bomber was at court, I think this was just last week. He said the war with Muslims, America’s war is just beginning, first drop of blood.” Oh yeah, there you go. Get some half assed criminal prophet and quote him (and kinda misqoute him too) like chapter and verse for why your nervousness isn’t irrational. The Times Square Bomber no doubt speaks for several billion Muslim’s, just like, oh, say that “Kill Whitey” guy spoke for Williams, right? I mean really, pundit or journo, when you resort to mimicry of a criminal for your worldview, you may as well go check in next to Manson.

    E. The Ultimate though, was that a purported journalist or even a Beckian pundit, would add, to the end of his string of assertions that he can’t be bigotted against Muslims bc he’s written about the civil rights movement and the kindasorta quoated assertion that “the war against Muslims, America’s war is just beginning” this: “I DON’T THINK THERE’S ANY WAY TO GET AWAY FROM THESE FACTS”

    It he had just said “I get nervous when I see people in Muslim garb getting on a plane, even though I know it’s irrational and it’s like white people in the South getting nervous about having to share a water fountain with black people” then I wouldn’t have cared. But when he quotes the manure bomber to try to support that it’s a “fact” that “America’s war” “with Muslims” is just beginning, that’s when he goes too far imo.

    When he takes his NPR journalism credentials and goes on Fox’s propaganda circuit to state that it’s a fact that America’s war with Muslims has just started, he’s flaked and flacked to the point where he needs to get his butt kicked out. The fact that his bull gets him a big payof from Fox is just all the more reason to be depressed about the state of journalism and punditry in America.

  8. JohnLopresti says:

    I think the Williams incident currently is fairly inconsequential. NPR picked a skillful moment to end the relationship, which, as bmaz indicated, was longsince dull in excess. The two daily hours Williams occupied for years have been a difficult format for NPR to manage. I am not sure NPR yet has matured its own concept of the two-hour program.

    Given I do not listen to media much, and almost never watch media, I had not known of Williams* transition to the conservative newsfiction Fox organization.

    I recall occasionally one peculiar show Williams broadcast live from an auditorium at a midwest liberal arts college where his (daughter) was a student; and another program with the Rev. J. Jackson; both shows were in Williams* final 12 months at the helm of the 2-hour program; and each had some interesting and poignant contrasts between his putatively liberal idealism countering the reality of his seemingly overly bureaucratized concept systems and cumberson rhetorical artifactual overlays.

    Good move, NPR.

  9. khiva says:

    I don’t care if NPR fired this guy or not. But, can we be serious for a minute? When was the last time on our planet when somebody who was NOT a Muslim blew himself up with a suicide vest? What was the date and place, please. Just facts, folks, not some philosophical sing-Kumbaya crap answer. When? When was the last time on our planet when somebody who was NOT a Muslim did something bad with an airplane? How far back do we have to go? The 1970’s and Bader-Meinhof? Or ever? When was the last time on our planet when somebody who was NOT a Muslim strapped a bomb on a 12-year and sent him into a crowd? Just dates and places, please, I’m not interersted in group-hug answers. I fly 400,000 miles a year, and when a single Hindu, Buddhist, Jain, Sikh, Animist, Christian, Jew, or Parsi blows himself or herself up this way, I’ll worry about them, too. And if you think I’m politically incorrect, you can go shit in your hat for all I care.

    • Kelly Canfield says:

      Let’s see:

      – A white christian supremacist blew up a bomb at the Atlanta Olympics; over the years he killed 2, injured 150

      – A white christian extremist assassinated George Tiller

      – A white christian supremacist shot up the Holocaust Museum and killed a security guard

      – A right wing Christian extremist tried to shoot up a humanitarian foundation

      – A right wing white extremist shot up a church and killed 2 people

      With the exception of the Olympics in Atlanta, all of these examples are post-9/11.

      Going to the doctor, church, museum or humanitarian foundation appears to be much more risky than flying domestically in the USA it appears; and from white guys who “look normal.”

        • Kelly Canfield says:

          Certainly – there’s tons more too. Just one blast from teh past, and then went forward past 9/11.

          Bottom line though, there’s more to fear from the seemingly normal than the seemingly “exotic.”

          Never saw a Hari-Krsna punch anybody yet.

      • jcc2455 says:

        You forgot the really provocative question about the airplane.

        -A white Christian tax protester crashed a plane into a government building.

        And, of course, a whole lotta airplanes owned by a Christian nation have killed a whole lot of Muslims in five countries.

        But I’m growing shrill.

      • khiva says:

        Not one of those incidents you cite involved an airplane, an airport, or suicide. My question was, when was the last time a non-Muslim used a suicide bomb or did something bad with an airplane? And less than 5% of my 400,000 miles a year are domestic.

    • gesneri says:

      I recall a couple of men dressed in traditional white American guy garb who blew up a federal building and took a great many innocent lives. Their names were Terry Nichols and Timothy McVeigh. If you got nervous any time you were within range of guys who dressed like they did, you couldn’t leave the house. Danger and hatred are inside the person, not in the clothing they wear or their cultural background.

    • UncertaintyVicePrincipal says:

      When was the last time on our planet when somebody who was NOT a Muslim did something bad with an airplane?

      Probably within the last month if you include unmanned versions, for piloted attacks you might have to go back a little farther, but it stretches over the last 7 years or so. Wikileaks just released 400 pages that give some of the details, lots of it includes weddings and funerals and so on.

      Next stupid question?

      • khiva says:

        I don’t consider drones. I can’t fly on them. No frequent flyer miles.

        Next [Edited by Moderator] comment?

        [Mod Note: Disagree with the argument without insulting other commenters]

        • UncertaintyVicePrincipal says:

          Not sure what you’re trying to say, if it’s “Oh that doesn’t count because I’m not afraid of those kind of planes” then you might realize that others in fact are.

          Your question was “When was the last time on our planet when somebody who was NOT a Muslim did something bad with an airplane?” – asked and answered.

          You might also realize that this is the whole point, people like Williams, and it sounds like you, have lost all perspective. His being afraid of people “first and foremost Muslim” is idiotic for many reasons, which have been pointed out here.

          Being afraid of someone because he dresses like the people who pilot planes that attack your country would be about as idiotic.

        • khiva says:

          Then censor post # 38 as well please, Moderator. A level playing field would be appreciated — if he is allowed to INTRODUCE such derogatory terms as “stupid,” then why am I not allowed to use them in response?

    • GlenJo says:

      Let’s see, we’ll put you down for Islamophobia, Aviophobia and highly susceptible to the pap that passes for “intelligent commentary” on the boob tube.

      I suppose people can have phobias, but in a real world analysis, you face significantly higher chances of being killed by much more pedestrian events such as car accidents, cancer, or heart attacks. Want my advice3? Turn of the boob tube and start reading again.

      As far as real existential threats to America, we came much closer to blowing up the whole world during the Cold war than most people will ever know. There never was or is now a serious threat from terrorists that live in a cave. Bush had to pump the threat up to ridiculous levels to distract the American public from his very real failure to do his job of protecting America after 911.

      My wife thinks that Bush’s greatest accomplishment as President was embracing stupidity and bring it into the mainstream. One sometimes cannot argue with that after watching current events.

  10. Bluetoe2 says:

    If Walter Cronkite, during the height of the civil rights movement, had said he felt nervous around blacks he would have lost all credibility as an impartial representative of the 4th Estate. News flash to Williams, you’ve lost all credibility but then it’s not required, and in fact is discouraged, at Fox News. A perfect fit.

  11. spocko says:

    From a communications aspect NPR did a terrible job of making this announcement. One of the reason I developed my advertiser alert program for K S F O hosts was to stay away from anything that might let the host cry victim. The reason is that I knew there would be people on the left in and the media who felt compelled to defend any horrific thing that came out of the mouths of the right wing hosts. The host talked about killing millions of Muslims, hanging liberals and journalists. Even then I knew if one was fired for suggesting journalists would be killed some misguided journalist would stand up for the hosts “free speech” That is why I focused on defunding them. If they get fired for not making money. Well that’s just good business sense.

    You want to make a point about their horrific speech in today’s media environment you have to understand that there are no comments attacking Muslims, or liberals that will lead to firing. Also sexist comments get a pass. Attacks on Mexican’s in the US were fine on CNN until it started to impact the bottom line.

    Glenn Beck will have to demonstrate he is financially good for the network or expose his real sugar daddy. because now he is hurting the network and share holders are noticing (I also pointed it out to them personally).

  12. SanderO says:

    Williams is a dolt, we know that. But his mission was to continue the meme which the perpetrators of 9/11 would have us believe is that we need to be on guard of the dangerous Jihad coming from Islam.

    This of course makes no sense. How likely would it be for Islam to overrun America and impose Sharia law or whatever the folks do? Does any believe this is possible? How would they do it?

    So assuming that there are Islamic whack jobs who want to attack us because they are crazy and angry and so forth… how much of a threat is it and how much of a response is necessary to fight this threat?

    More people died from dog bites than from terrorists attacks last year. But we have a trillion dollar GWOT going to keep us safe.

    Now consider that perhaps we weren’t attacked by crazy Jihadists for a second. That they were intel patsies who were itchin for war because the MIC needed a new enemy. So they would obviously identify the target and use every damn stereotype in the book to drill this image into every American so that they know who the enemy was. And conveniently we have been abusing Arabs for 6 decades and given them every reason to hate us especially after 9/11. We killed a million people in AfPak who couldn’t possibly all be terrorists and so we have become a target for their animus and may actually have encourage radicals to lash out against us.

    Williams is just playing his part and reinforcing the fear thing. Get ready for another false flag and the right sayin – I told ya so. We need more drones.

  13. Teddy Partridge says:

    Funny how, on FOX, there’s hardly ever any mention of fear of SAUDIs. Considering who the 911 highjackers were, and who owns FOX’s largest non-Murdoch share.

  14. UncertaintyVicePrincipal says:

    Even with all of the furor, the most offensive and ridiculous parts of his statement aren’t even being looked at by most people talking about it:

    I see people who are in Muslim garb who identify themselves as first and foremost as Muslims

    He’s claiming here that his fears come from a rational perception that wearing “garb” of a certain type says something not just about faith or ethnicity, but about the wearer’s value system “First, I’m a Muslim. Second, a citizen of country XYZ” and so on. And that this signals danger.

    All you have to do is substitute “black” or “Jewish” to instantly get how offensive it would be to all of those defending him were it so.

    In William’s case it’s like he’s saying that it’s okay to be Muslim as long as you distance yourself from it, or something, since we all know that Muslims are scary and dangerous, so if you’re Muslim, fine, but make sure it’s clear that you’re not really putting that “above” any other image of yourself, because if you put it first, well then clearly you’re dangerous…

    Or God knows what he’s getting at, that’s my best guess. Shameful stuff, in any case.

    • ottogrendel says:

      Your point about exchanging the word Muslim for the word Jew in Williams’ statement exposes a similar insidious aspect of this bigotry in that it promotes the extra fear of a borderless, international conspiracy: a faceless, global Muslim horde only identifiable via their “garb” and beholden to nothing but their own self-described religious radicalism. This bigoted framing is exactly that used publicly in Germany prior to acting on “The Jewish Question.” What do you do with someone who primarily identifies with their own ethnicity/religion, refuses to conform to the dominant culture of their state, and is ultimately stateless as well? What Williams said—and what a whole lot of others agree with—is a reflection of a special kind of bigotry.

  15. bluedot12 says:

    “You cannot ignore what happened on 9/11 and you cannot ignore the connection to Islamic radicalism and you can’t ignore the fact that what has been recently said in court with regard to this is the first drop of blood in a Muslim war on America.”

    So I guess we should shuffel them all off to a reeducation camp? No way they can build any more mosques in America or especially in NY, eh Juan? Yeah, you can stop blaming an entire religion for what a few whack jobs did.

  16. ThingsComeUndone says:

    I’m happy to see Juan Williams and his crappy analysis gone from NPR. But the whole ruckus over Juan Williams’ firing from NPR over his admission that he does a double take when he sees people dressed in obviously Muslim garb is missing a key point.

    Look as a third generation American worried about driving through Sheriff Joe’s state well WTF my grand ma could never enter America again because her son went to Mexico to avoid the draft in WW2.
    But Bush the draft dodger with money gets elected in Texas! Fuck with my family coward!

  17. ThingsComeUndone says:

    Juan wants to excuse Bush? Judge him by the same measure as my family my Grandma never could come back here!

  18. papau says:

    I fear no living thing – except humans.

    How they dress does not affect the type or amount of that fear.

    Indeed the irrational anti-religious make their allies wary, just as the irrational religious make their allies wary.

    Humans with self esteem issues that cause a need to put down others are always scary.

  19. Kelly Canfield says:

    The other thing I find amusing; isn’t it THE FRENCH who are supposed to be the fearful-surrender types?

    Is he really named Jean Williams? Hmm?

    • UncertaintyVicePrincipal says:

      Well, considering that the French lost something on the order of 1.4 million soldiers in combat in WWI, which as a percentage of their population would be roughly equivalent to us losing 18 million soldiers defending the country– you might want to just skip that particular talking point. Just saying.

        • UncertaintyVicePrincipal says:

          So losing 3% of your population fighting means that you’re cowards?

          I don’t know what “the fact remains” refers to, the common moronic right wing meme, and what I was responding to, is that they’re “surrender monkeys” or surrender prone. If the US lost 18 million soldiers before being overrun I doubt you’d be calling us surrender prone.

          • khiva says:

            No, losing 3% of your populations means you’re not very good at fighting. Four years of human wave attacks means your generals bring whole new meaning to the word “stupid.” People with no understanding of military history often conflate bravery with success, something the neocons love to do. The fact that the Poilus were for the most part very obedient soldiers at the tactical level(there were quite a few mutinies 1916-1918) does not change the fact that the French suck at the strategic level of war, and have SURRENDERED in every war they have fought since the 18th century.

  20. Frank33 says:

    The right wingers are so sad, except for the chance to bash NPR. But as for Full Spectrum Censorship, we have Phil Donahue fired from MSNBC because he was antiwar with high ratings. Markos was banned from MSNBC because he mentioned Killer Joe’s suspicious employee death. The corporations including NPR do not need a reason to censor anyone. Electronic mass communications belongs only to billionaires and the millionaires they hire to lie to us.

    It continues to be that only pro war propaganda is allowed because the corporations sponsor the propaganda. Juan Williams is just another Glen Beck selling us Disaster Capitalism and Wars.

    • nycterrierist says:

      That’s only logical./s
      I know I’m unsettled when I see priests,
      and I’m not even a little boy…

  21. ThingsComeUndone says:

    Juan gets cred for being Black USEFUL IDIOT a puppet a weak liberal who always falls down for GOP arguments in the end.
    Tell me Marcy with 10 minutes of google would you would not fall as often as Oreo Juan has before Fox arguments.
    Fucker claims by the name Juan to back us Hispanics veins standing on my arms Fuckers a traitor.
    Knives Drawn and shut up Whites Mexican handle our own our way.
    He claims us then he with the Goddess help suffers. The age of Chaos is ending prepare.

  22. ThingsComeUndone says:

    If Juan wants Hispanic Cred he better remind me but seeing him on Fox News Well better to live on your feet than die on your knee’s Zapata said this Cretin insults the race.
    Every one of my ancestors scream!

  23. onitgoes says:

    The whole point of our Kleptocracy has been oppress “small people” for the enrichment of the top 2% – 3%. One of the easier ways to manipulate people is via fear, and scapegoating some segment of the population – and making them into scary scary monsters – is one way to do the trick.

    So there were some Muslims mainly from Saudi Arabia – you know: THAT Saudi Arabia, whose Prince Saud is BFF with the Bush familay; THAT Saudi Arabia who funded and supported Al Qaeda (not Saddam Hussein in Iraq, btw. If you drank that Kool Aid, you’ve been fooled. For all his numerous & egregious faults, Dictator Hussein firmly kept Al Qaeda OUT of Iraq); THAT Saudi Arabia who has zillionaires who own a significant chunk of Fox, the main rightwing propoganda tool – who, dressed in western garb, sadly hijacked some airplanes & crashed them into the Twin Towers killing some 3000 citizens.

    Yes, and what else do we have? Well, lessee, Bushco was more than adequately warned by Richard Clark & Bill Clinton to prepare for and be viligant against JUST such an attack by Al Qaeda. And lessee: Bush, whose family just by coincidence happens to be BFF with the bin Laden family & has many “financial” dealings with them & various zillionaire Saudis via the Carlyle Group, yes THAT W Bush said: duly noted. Now I’m heading down to the ranchito to pick some shrubs.

    So, yeah: lemme see, who EXACTLY am I supposed to be afraid of?? Should I be “afraid of” every single Muslim out in the world because they might just decide to go nutty and blow up something, whether by airplane or otherwise? OR maybe I should be more concerned about various rightwing politicians, foreign corporate zillionaires who control rightwing propoganda machines, and their fellow travlers in the Military Industrial Complex who make TONS of money from MY tax dollars by frightening credulous citizens and brainwashing them to believe that it’s “good” to go to war against downtrodden nations just because some of their citizens *might* “do something bad to me.”

    Sheesh. Get a clue, and figure out who the REAL enemies are in this picture.

    I fly a LOT, and I’m not a-skeeeered of dusky people, whether they’re in some non-westernized garb or they’re in westernized garb.

    Frankly, I have more *concern* about full-bore whacked out white “Christianists” in this nation who make no bones about advocating for killing other citizens IF they don’t get “their way” at the voting booth.

  24. onitgoes says:

    P.S. Juan Williams is lazy, unintelligent HACK, who has been palmed off as a “journalist” for far too long by the likes of both NPR and Fox.

    I, for one, am happy to see someone finally have to accept some consequences for their brain-dead racist rhetoric. I wish more talking heads in the corporate-owned rightwing media will similarly held accountable. There’s too much crappy “talk” like this that is eminantly counterproductive and provides no insight or any of value, other than pandering to the baser instincts of society.

    • ThingsComeUndone says:

      Juan bends over to Fox he is a Fake Liberal designed to make us look weak. Forget EW and the front pagers you and I can fight for the cause better than he easily:(
      The fact he calls himself Juan hurts!

  25. MollyNYC says:

    And I said “that’s not a bigoted statement.

    Actually, a willingness to believe truly idiotic things about some group or another is pretty much the definition of “bigoted.”

  26. psalongo says:

    I don’t have a problem with what Juan said. I am a liberal. I also recognize that Juan is not as left as I am. With all that said, Juan was stating how he feels. When you look at the total context of what he said, it is reasonable and fair.

    I’m sure all of us here have our own prejudices. Being a liberal IMO also means using truth and reason to overcome them.

    Is Juan being punished here for being honest?

  27. ottogrendel says:

    Irrational fears are exacerbated by bigotry. The constant conflation in the news and other public discourse of Middle Eastern, Muslim and Terrorist produces the very bigotry in which Williams engages. “Muslim garb”?! As opposed to Christian garb? So the folks in Egypt, Afghanistan and Niger all wear the same clothes? Even Williams’ apology is bigoted.

  28. khiva says:

    As a liberal Democrat turned Socialist, I knew there would be lots of the usual righteous indignation here, with half a dozen hand-wringing, Kumbaya-singing, group-huggers quick to condemn me for political incorrectness, and you haven’t disappointed. All of you who see an airport once a year for your annual vacation to Florida, who have never been inside a Mosque let alone prayed in one, and who have never visited a Muslim country let alone lived in one (as I do now) have trotted out your usual liberal thought-Gestapo tactics to belittle, malign, label, and categorize me. The irony is marvellous. And you know what? You can all go help yourselves to big bowl of shut the fuck up.

    What we have extablished here are the following hard, cold facts:

    (1) Not all Muslims are suicide bombers, but all suicide bombers are Muslims

    (2) Not all Muslims attack airports, but all airport attackers are Muslims.

    (3) Not all Muslims are aircraft hijackers and aircraft bombers, but all aircraft hijackers and aircraft bombers are Muslims.

    Now, you’ve done a lovely job of dragging red herrings all over my point, like the existence of right-wing Christian terrorists (which I have pointed out in other threads on FDL) and the illegal US drone attacks in Pakistan (which I condemn), but for all the smoke and mirrors and rightious indignation, you have not refuted the fact that a person like me who is in an airport somewhere on earth 250 days a year and flies at least 400,000 miles a year, as I do, has more to worry about STATISTICALLY from Muslim passengers than from Buddhist passengers on the same airplane. If that gets your liberal panties in a bunch, I don’t give a shit. And for the record, I don’t own a television and I’m not afraid of anything: Not flying, not the 8 million Muslims who live around my apartment, and certainly not the Political Correctness Police Department of Pay-No-Attention-To-That-Man-Behind-The-Curtain liberals.

    • prairiedog says:

      more to worry about STATISTICALLY from Muslim passengers


      Bush & Cheney killed more Americans (in Iraq/Afghan) than the 9/11 hijackers…..as long as you’re worried about statistics.

      • khiva says:

        Another red herring. Stick to the subject. The issue here is AIRPORTS and COMMERCIAL AIR TRAVEL. That is what that buffoon Juan Williams was talking about. I was a USG commissioned officer on the AfPak border while Bush/Cheney/Rumsfeld were murdering Afghans by the hundreds and we can talk about that on another thread. The point HERE is, I will ALWAYS be a wee bit more curious on one of my 250 annual flights when I see a Muslim passenger playing with his sneaker than when I see a Hiundu or Buddhist playing with his. And if you fly 400,000 miles a year, and you’re not, you’re either a fool or a liar.

    • bmaz says:

      Hi there. You seem to be new here. We only have a few ground rules, but they include don’t be an ass and don’t be a moron. You are off to an inauspicious start. Make a stab at providing commentary that is not bigoted, stupid and/or demeaning. Or find somewhere else to go.

  29. prairiedog says:

    Does Williams try to move children away from any Catholic priests? I’d almost bet there’s a more likelihood that that are child molesters than the random muslim is a terrorist. This is no idle comment. A priest once tried “hitting on” me (as an adult)…right in the sacristy of my parent’s church! Forget ground zero. Should Catholic churches be at least 1/2 mile away from any grammar school? So much for the morality of right wing nutcases.