The debate continues, and I would like to weigh-in as well. Juan Williams, NPR, O’Reilly and Freedom of Speech is being discussed under the banner of Muslims and how we talk about them. I attempt here to look at this issue a bit differently. It might have the title – CAIRless. I will save that, however, for a future update on CAIR. We need to know about that organization.
A new approach to NPR and Juan Williams – by now you all know the story. If not then go to the websites noted in this Blog. It leads to a discussion as to Political Correctness – possibly even – Freedom of Speech.
We all have prejudices, hidden or otherwise. We all fear being hurt, robbed, invaded, unexpectedly attacked, held at gun point and deceived. Prejudices arise from our concerns for safety and the protection of our families and livelihoods. They arise also from clichés that form and as a follower represent a common sense of conformity and attitudes. Many comments that are made at a gathering of friends should never be repeated in public. In all cases they should not be said in the first place. An open forum can lead to miss-understandings. This has been emphasized repeatedly during this political season. Curb your tongue fits well for any discussion, whether private or not. Privacy today is questionable. We are under the spotlight or in the eye of a camera just about everywhere. We have our cell phones handy and, as Gov. Brown realized, we never know when they are left-on or how that could occur. There is the ‘open mike’ problem which has bitten many and if in the public eye becomes fodder for the news media and attack opportunities for the opposing side. There is always that statement which is ‘overheard’ and then repeated. The line of repeats can result in distortions far beyond the potentially wrong understanding of the comments made by the listener. A nearby table, on an elevator or airplane, ears near when on your cell phone, and just a passer-by can readily catch a phrase or two. How your neighbors react becomes the air of difference.
Several years ago my wife and I were driving through an area of Connecticut, leading from one town to another, that many would consider questionable. It had its reputation. It was a short distance and reduced travel time by at least 15 minutes. It was worth the risk. As we entered the reportedly unsavory area we noticed many men, people of color, sitting on stoops of houses, a few crossing the street, some women in doorways, many smoking, and more gathered on a street corner chatting. We were in suits; they were not. Their dress was quite casual. I, as the driver, thought it best to ensure our doors were locked. So I did what anyone would do. I found the button that automatically locked all the doors. It was an older auto with the button locking mechanism that could be pushed down into the door frame or reached in an emergency with a tool fed through the top of a window grabbing the top of the locking piece and pulling it up. If you recall when activated and all doors lock in unison a noise is made. That sound of security. But not only was this sound heard inside the car, it was heard outside the car as well. Heads turned. Men crossing near us also turned and gestured. We had that look of ‘we know why you are locking those doors.’ ‘Who do you think we are?’ ‘Are you afraid?’ We were in a Juan Williams moment. We were sensitive before we entered the area, framing our thoughts, if asked, as did Juan about Muslims.
Maybe the walk-out on the View when Bill O’Reilly stated that Muslims attacked the WTC set the stage for a code orange or the like towards anything non-PC towards Muslims for the women present. Behar and Whoopi were wrong, but then again they proved they were not objective – and have not been historically. O’Reilly’s degrading treatment of Joy Behar earlier in the show may have raised a few hairs and readied Behar to do something dramatic. As the host or hostesses of the show they were to be held to a higher standard and to demonstrate a greater civility than their invited guests, but then that is not Whoopi or Behar’s style. For your review here is the scene on The View (http://www.tmz.com/2010/10/14/the-view-bill-oreilly-whoopi-goldberg-joy-behar-barbara-walters/)
Here is another look at the View and their treatment of Ann Coulter. [http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nR5hLJeGl3Y]
Recently I even had someone walk out on me. Having breakfast a few weeks ago with another couple a discussion on Islam and other issues of relevance to happenings in America arose. Religion as a topic was included. The insensitivity of Muslims to anything they might even suggest as ‘persecution’ was mentioned. How they react and the nature of their ‘hate’ entered the conversation. Suddenly a woman stood up, “I can’t take this anymore!” and left. Well that by itself changed the discussion, at least for the moment, as everyone reflected, for the most part without speaking, on the emotional demeanor and display of intolerance to what was being said. What ever was non-PC that triggered the exit, frankly, was not analyzed. We did note though how sensitive the issues are and how those in the more liberal camp, where this person I would say fits, react to any possible negative air arising when talk of fringe minorities, the unreligious, the humanists, and the Muslims is on the table.
For the record, as said on the Bill O’Reilly show on Oct. 18 by Juan Williams, “I mean, look, Bill, I’m not a bigot. … But when I get on a plane, I got to tell you, if I see people who are in Muslim garb and I think, you know, they’re identifying themselves first and foremost as Muslims, I get worried. I get nervous.”
It was, so the press has noted, after a press release on Wednesday from CAIR, NPR fired Juan. NPR was careless in my view and bowed to the pressure of this extremist organization. We must stand up to the feelings of the majority of Americans and CAIRless about CAIR and their posturing to mitigate the freedom to say what one wishes against a religion – Islam. We are not attacking individuals, this is not ‘hate’ towards any one person, but there are concerns about the overall nature of Islam, with an emphasis on the extreme elements.
From Islamist Watch a few PC observations are noted: http://www.islamist-watch.org/blog/2010/10/npr-cans-juan-williams-for-addressing-reality
From Act For America: “Almost as if on cue, National Public Radio sacked commentator Juan Williams because of remarks he made on The O’Reilly Factor Monday.
This goes beyond political correctness. This is a media company, partially financed with our tax dollars, in effect doing the bidding of Sharia law. American newspapers that refused to publish the satirical Mohammed cartoons did the same thing.
With these actions they betrayed the first amendment while capitulating to the demands of Sharia law.
Particularly disturbing is that there is the appearance that NPR was kowtowing to CAIR, the Council-on American Islamic Relations, which quickly organized a public relations effort demanding NPR “address” Juan Williams’ remarks.” More from Act for American can be found at http://www.actforamerica.org.
CAIR is the organization whose co-founder, Omar Ahmad, is on record declaring “the Qur’an should be the highest authority in America,” and whose chief spokesman, Ibrahim Hooper, has said he would like the government of America to be Islamic sometime in the future.
From CAIR: “NPR should address the fact that one of its news analysts seems to believe that all airline passengers who are perceived to be Muslim can legitimately be viewed as security threats,” said CAIR National Executive Director Nihad Awad. “Such irresponsible and inflammatory comments would not be tolerated if they targeted any other racial, ethnic or religious minority, and they should not pass without action by NPR.” Awad noted that media commentators who launch rhetorical attacks on Islam and Muslims normally do not suffer the professional consequences of those who similarly target other racial, ethnic or religious groups.
NPR Affiliates Voice their Discontent: http://politics.blogs.foxnews.com/2010/10/25/npr-affiliate-managers-voice-discontent-firing-juan-williams
This all boils down to an over zealous application of Political Correctness. This appears to be more of a liberal approach, although liberals are seldom condemned when they miss-speak (The political forever candidate for governor of California, Brown, his ‘whore’ comment to be recalled), but when a conservative errs or miss-speaks liberals act liberally (pun intended) to discredit. Without a platform liberals can only attack – and PC terminology is a favorite venue. Now Juan Williams is considered a liberal, but some feel his association with Fox News did him in, with pressure also from billionaire George Soros (what is his problem anyway?).
When do people truly hear what is being said and see what is behind the veil of PC rhetoric. Is it minorities defending their selfish practices and supporting others in need of similar defensive tactics for their predilections, habits, etc. Let’s look at some common and humorous PC terminology:
Political Correctness defined by a student at Texas A & M in their 2009 contest (to define a specific terminology) – The winner wrote: “Political correctness is a doctrine, fostered by a delusional, illogical minority, and rabidly promoted by an unscrupulous mainstream media, which holds forth the proposition that it is entirely possible to pick up a turd by the clean end.”
Here are a few useful PC words (please – many are tongue-in-cheek):
- Broken Home – Replaced by Dysfunctional family.
- Bum – Replaced by Homeless Person. Calling a person a “Bum” implies that the person is a moocher that is too lazy to get a job. Referring to him as a “Homeless Person” removes this stigma, and implies that he would be a perfectly normal citizen if only the government would give him a house. (See :State-Socialism)
- Burglars – Unwanted House Guests.
- Crazy – Replaced by the term Mental Illness. And, since it is an illness, it may be treated in the same manner as other diseases – with drugs. Of course, this idea is nothing new … people have been using drugs to treat depression for centuries.
- Criminal – Replaced by behaviorally challenged. This is one change that makes sense. A lot of the people in prisons today are not really “criminals” in the classic sense. Thanks to the “War on Drugs”, there are a lot of people in jail because they failed to “behave” properly.
- Drug Dealers – Unlicensed pharmacists.
- Elderly – senior citizens
- Factory – Replaced by Plant. The word Factory is a place where mistreated laborers toil long hours to produce pollution that billows forth from gigantic smokestacks. The word Plant is preferred since it is more difficult for this term to carry a negative connotation since this term is also used to describe nature. Its counterpart noun describes plant life (Plants, as in flowers, shrubs, etc). And the Verb form, to plant, is the process of lovingly placing a seed in the ground so it may one day grow into a mighty oak. Who can complain about having a new plant in their backyard?
- Failure – Replaced by Deferred Success.
- Fairy – Homophobic. Replaced by Petite airborne humanoid which possesses magical powers. The term fairy should be avoided when discussing these mythical beings, regardless of how gay they may appear.
- Fat – Replaced by Enlarged physical condition caused by a completely natural genetically-induced hormone imbalance. Of course, this is very difficult to say in one breath– so people will find it easier to not say it at all. The term “fat” is simply too short and to direct. It all too clearly points out that the reason that an obese person’s skin appears so swollen is because it is being buttressed by large amounts of… well… Fat.
- Foreign Food – Replaced by Ethnic Cuisine. The word foreign is generally used when one wishes to refer to something that is alien to ones own country — something that is not normally found within the jurisdiction of your own particular political unit. But with the increasing power of multinational organizations (such as the U.N. and large corporations), nothing can be said to be truly ‘foreign’ anymore. In a world where you can find a McDonald’s in Moscow, a Disneyland in Japan, or a single currency throughout Europe, the word ‘Foreign’ is losing its meaning. The word ‘ethnic’ provides a more accurate way to refer to these cultural traits which are continually growing fainter as we move away from the world of the past, in which different areas of the world were actually unique.
- Founding Fathers – Too Sexist. Instead, use the term The Founders. We wouldn’t want to exclude all those great female leaders of 18th century America would we?
- Garbage Man – Replaced by Sanitation Engineer – A Garbage Man picks up garbage. A Sanitation Engineer engineers it.
- Ghetto – Replaced by Economically disadvantaged area. This term is used by politicians who believe money from the Government would solve their problems.
- Girlfriend/Wife – Replaced by Unpaid sex worker
- Handicapped – Replaced by Physically Challenged, or even worse, handicapable
- Home-ec (Home Economics) – Replaced by Family and Consumer Sciences, and I’m really not sure why. These classes have been taught in school since the early 1900’s after Ellen Swallow Richards, an old-time feminist and the first woman to graduate from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, formed the American Home Economics Association in 1909. But I suppose that the reason for the change has something to do with the fact that Home-Ec is generally considered a ‘girly’ class, and is therefore sexist.
- Housewife – Replaced by Domestic Engineer. This is to remove the necessity of marriage from the task of raising children.
- Illegal Aliens – Replaced by Undocumented Immigrants or undocumented worker. The phrase ‘Illegal Aliens’ implies that these people are a bunch of law-breaking creatures from outer space, while ‘Undocumented Immigrants’ suggests that they are good old-fashioned immigrants that simply have not gone through the hassle of being ‘documented’ yet.
- Illegal Drugs – Buying illegal drugs should be referred to as Purchasing un-prescribed medicine.
- Janitor – Replaced by Custodial Artist. No matter what you call it, this is a person who is paid to clean up ‘x*#%’.
- Jungle – Replaced by Rainforest. A Rainforest is a happy place where Disney characters dance and sing … a jungle is a scary place with lions, tigers, malaria and natives that want to cut off your head and boil it for dinner… who in their right mind would want to save that!?!
- Lumberjack – Replaced by Murderer.
- Man’s Job and Woman’s Work – Replaced by Traditional Gender Role. These are basic practices that are followed in one form or another by most of the life forms on this planet, and have been part of human culture for thousands of years… and as with most other ‘traditions’, a lot of people believe that it is time for a change.
- Midget – Replaced by Vertically Challenged.
- Natural Disaster – replaced by Unnatural Event caused by man’s destruction of the environment. Every hurricane, mudslide, and flood should be blamed on Global Warming, even though these events have been occurring for millions of years. (I’m still waiting for somebody to blame the last Ice Age on the campfires of cavemen)
- Negro – “Negro” and “colored“, once perfectly acceptable terms, became offensive during the 1970s and “Afro-American” and “Black” came into use, which in turn gave way to African-American, and in broader usage, people of color.
- Nigger – Originally, A negro Slave. Has evolved to mean “A Trashy or devious Negro”, but the word has still lost acceptance. (see : White Trash)
- Pedophilia – Pedophilia shall now be known as, “A Predilection, Preference, Desire and Fondness for little children” – just like Mohammad had.
- Psycho – Replaced by Pathologically High-Spirited
- Rapist – Rapists must not be offended and will henceforth be known as, Unwanted lovers.
- Secretary – Replaced by Administrative Assistant – The word Secretary comes from Latin and means ‘Confidential Officer’ – And for some unknown reason this is a bad thing.
- Sex Change – Replaced by gender re-assignment.
- Swamp – Replaced by Wetland. Swamps are full of alligators, bugs, and disease. If anybody went around saying that we need to “save the swamps”, people would think they were out of their friggin’ mind!
- Terrorism – this has been a word of great concern as it has become a label for Muslims, not applicable to every Muslim. One suggestion is man caused disaster, as it is man, regardless of religion that may be the perpetrator of destruction by bomb, airplane, IED, or suicide with bomb-pack attachment. Obama has used the term ‘vicious killers.’
- Trailer Park – Replace by Mobile Home Community.
- Ugly – Replaced by Visually Challenging.
- War on Terror – President Barack Obama and his Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napalitano have scrapped the terms “war on terror” and “terrorist attacks.” The new hygienic, sterilized language and “politically correct” term being introduced by the Obama administration for the ‘war on terror” is now “Overseas Contingency Operations“.
- White Boy – rhythmically challenged
- White Trash – On the most basic level, calling anyone trash is just plain cruel and dehumanizing. Term still in acceptance, although its counterpart term to describe trash of the negro race is being eliminated. Only people of color can use the term ‘nigger’. If used by others they are ‘white trash.’ Here is one suggestion – caucasian culturally-disadvantaged
NPR – Well let us define – Vivian Shiller (NPR’s – President and CEO) did not have her best moment when she was asked to discuss the Williams incident. That is when she suggested his need for a psychologist (for which she apologized). She did not represent herself well, degrading her education and capabilities for the position she holds. Less than articulate she was characterized as being well below the IQ level normally needed to enter Cornell or any Ivey college. NPR appears to be her personal campground for her own intellectual preferences, the only one in which she could succeed, paid for in part by the government. Her Russian language skills, Russian tour guide experience and leanings towards communism – some consider her a ‘communist sympathizer’ – make way for a liberal position on most issues. [http://www.americanthinker.com/2010/10/vivian_schiller_and_the_party.html] Then there is her work history with the NY Times that supports her liberal nature. On its own NPR could never succeed having to garner advertising to pay as they go with her at the helm. No liberal talk radio has been successful to date (except for NPR, and they need government support). Can’t they hire more competent people? Maybe that is why Williams was fired – he exceeded their average IQ by multiple double digits. Here is a person-of-color concerned about man caused disasters most recently associated with men of the faith of Islam, and how it all effected him. Shiller’s unheralded comment, if you did not pick up on it (paraphrased), “It is a shame this had to happen during the week NPR was raising funds.”
Enough, time to move-on, but not with the mantra of Move-On.Org, but with a more tolerant agenda that listens, engages, understands and sees the side of the majority as well as the minority – without the bashing that goes on constantly. I sense I am rambling. Please forgive me.
Grace and Peace. May we all pray for a world of peace and understanding, emphasize issues and facts, and take a breath before we speak, remembering it could be you that will be attacked next. But then again, say what you feel personally, express your emotions, not as an opinion for all to consider. It is how we get to know one another. Defend one’s right to express their personal concerns.