Tuesday, April 30, 2013

The root causes of Islamophobic hysteria

Brendan O"Neill in the Telegraph

Where is the mob of Muslim-hating Americans going crazy after Boston? It's a figment of liberals' imaginations

Clearly, some observers fear ordinary Americans more than they do terrorists; they fret more over how dangerously unintelligent and hateful Yanks will respond to bombings than they do over the bombings themselves.
What this reveals is that liberal concern over Islamophobia, liberal fretting about anti-Muslim bigotry, is ironically driven by a bigotry of its own, by an deeply prejudiced view of everyday people as hateful and stupid. The anti-Islamophobia lobby poses as the implacable opponent of bigotry, yet it spreads a bigoted view of ordinary white folk as so volatile, so brimming with fury, that they are one terrorist bombing away from transforming into an anti-Muslim pogrom.
Howard Kurtz used this week's installment of Reliable Sources to bash hot talk in the wake of the Boston bombings.

Jane Hall, a frequent Kurtz guest, strikes a willfully obtuse pose so she can bash Fox News for Islamaphobia.

But I think there is a difference between endlessly linking this and saying, you know, they're hopefully having visuals that say radical Islam with these young men's pictures and talking about how they should have been shot in the boat and how the wife of one of the suspects should be imprisoned simply because she is wearing a head dress in the Muslim religion.
My point. Wait, my point is that we don't know what happened here and, yet, there is a rush to tar all Muslims with radicalism. That's my point. I think it is, in many places, on FOX. I really think if you look at it, it's across a lot of different shows on FOX.
Hall is either a very stupid woman, always a possibility with journalism professors,, or she is deeply dishonest. There may be some who are suspicious of Tamerlan Tsarnaev's widow "because she is wearing a head dress in the Muslim religion". But Hall is flat wrong when she implies that Islamaphobia is the sole driver of such suspicions. Only a fool like Jane Hall or Howard Kurtz would give a pass to the woman who lived in a small apartment where her husband built bombs and plotted terror.

Similarly Hall takes Fox News's attempt to distinguish the killers from the majority of Muslims ("radical" versus "mainstream") and pretends that Fox is trying to paint all Muslim's as radical.

So is she very stupid or dishonest? Kurtz does not care. He is on another mission. He is out to re-establish the post-9/11 media consensus: be sad, not angry.

KURTZ: The coverage of the Boston bombing took a sharp turn this week as the narrative turned to the motivation of the Tsarnaev brothers and whether federal authorities had mangled the case. There was some angry talk about Muslims, as much of the media world picked side, pointed fingers and engaged in ideological sniping....

KURTZ: So, what explains the ugliness that erupted after the marathon was marred by violence?
A couple of posts by William Jacobson shed light on the political agenda of the SPLC and others who are intent on promoting the media meme that the average American is "hateful and stupid".

SPLC doesn’t have the guts to put Bill Maher on its “Anti-Muslim” Hate Watch list

SPLC does not have Maher on its anti-Muslim Hate Watch list even though his statements in the video, which he has made numerous times before, seem to fit squarely within SPLC’s definition. (For the record, I don’t think Maher should be on the list, even though he would be by the SPLC definition.)

It’s not hard to guess the reason. Maher’s base is SPLC’s base. Maher is a liberal with a very large megaphone, a bigger megaphone than SPLC. Maher could do more damage to SPLC’s fundraising than SPLC could do to Maher’s career.

Developer of Eliminationist Narrative still claiming Jared Loughner was “right-wing”

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