Posts Tagged ‘Sharia’

Three cheers for Bret Baier, Chris Wallace, and Byron York of Fox News, and for Rachel Maddow of MSNBC

August 13, 2011

Who would have thought that Fox News and MSNBC could raise us out of our funk over the hyper-partisan media and their destructive influence on political discourse in America?

First, Fox:  As hosts of the Republican Presidential debate Thursday Fox might have been expected to throw fat pitches to the favored candidates. But reporters Bret Baier, Chris Wallace, and Byron York* would have made the legendary Martha Rountree—creator of Meet the Press and no gentle tosser of fat pitches—proud.

Chris Wallace asked Gingrich about his entire campaign staff resigning, then asked Herman Cain about his claim that “communities have the right to ban Muslims from building mosques.” Byron York asked Bachmann to explain her statement that she was following biblical guidance to “Be submissive. Wives, you are to be submissive to your husbands.”

And Baier may have settled the 2012 Presidential contest when he asked the candidates to raise their hands if they would walk away from a deal to balance the budget with a ten-to-one ratio of spending cuts to tax increases. I haven’t seen hands shoot up so fast since I asked in a staff meeting who could use my tickets to Sunday’s Redskins game. Every single candidate claimed absolute dedication to not raise ANY taxes, not even on the super rich, not even on Big Oil, not even on tax-exempt GE. And we know it because of Brett Baier.

And MSNBC’s Rachel Maddow turned away from hyper-partisanship to recognize the courage of four prominent Republicans who defied (more…)

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Hooray for Romney and Paul for eschewing the politics of discrimination and hatred against Muslims and gays at the GOP debate

June 15, 2011

It feels awkward to praise in an ethics column somebody for showing simple decency, but considering today’s Republican candidates, simple decency is nothing to sneeze at.

So hooray for Mitt Romney for standing up for the rights of American Muslims. Romney dismissed the idea that Sharia law could ever be applied in American courts (“We have a Constitution”), and rejected Herman Cain’s position that Muslims should be singled out and treated differently (“We treat people with respect regardless of their religious persuasion.”)

By contrast, Cain and Newt Gingrich made it clear that they would be very reluctant to have any Muslims serve under them. The other participants, Michele Bachmann, Rick Santorum, and Ron Paul didn’t comment in the debate.

Bachmann has in the past shown suspicion toward American Muslims, while Santorum has stated that he considers Muslims to be as good American citizens as anybody. Paul has been downright heroic on this issue, blasting those in the conservative movement who use “hatred against Muslims to rally support.”

On another subject Paul earned praise from Ethics Alarms for his ethical and libertarian position on the military’s “don’t ask, don’t tell” policy. He was the only candidate to reject the policy.

Republican Party stands by while Glenn Beck and the birthers spread their poisonous lies

February 13, 2011

 

We’re responsible for what we tolerate. If I stand next to a friend who slanders you and say nothing, then I’ve accepted that slander and am responsible for it. John Boehner Told David Gregory on NBC’s Meet the Press that he believes Obama’s a Christian, born in Hawaii, but if a third of Republicans believe different, that’s apparently OK with Boehner: “It’s not my job to tell the American people what to think.”

Why not, Mr. Speaker? You’re complicit in the lies if you don’t challenge them.

And Glenn Beck says that a giant conspiracy comprising Obama, the Egyptian demonstrators, the Muslim Brotherhood, the communists, and the AFL-CIO is dedicated to creating a new caliphate that will govern all of Europe and the Middle East under Sharia law. And Americans, he beseeches, wake up before it’s too late.

We haven’t seen the polls or focus groups yet, but you can bet that a third of Republicans will swallow it, hook, line, and sinker.

The Republican Party has one adult, Bill Kristol, who publicly rejects Beck’s conspiracy rant:

Hysteria is not a sign of health. When Glenn Beck rants about the caliphate taking over the Middle East from Morocco to the Philippines, and lists (invents?) the connections between caliphate-promoters and the American left, he brings to mind no one so much as Robert Welch and the John Birch Society. (more…)

Newt Gingrich maligns American Muslims, Imam Feisal Abdul Rauf, and the mosque “at” Ground Zero

July 29, 2010

I got my weekly email yesterday from Newt Gingrich headed “No Mosque at Ground Zero.” It was quite scary—a 1500-word letter exposing Imam Feisal Abdul Rauf as “an apologist for Sharia supremacy” who “actually compared Sharia law with the Declaration of Independence, and who is spreading “moral confusion about the nature of radical Islamism.”

Newt leads up to this indictment of Rauf by warning us that “radical Islamists” are trying to impose Sharia law in parts of America, “no matter how deeply [it conflicts with] the democratic values undergirding our constitutional system.”

He then leads us through horrors like honor killings of family members, spousal torture and rape, and even threats against a disabled student with a [unclean] guide dog—all permitted by Newt’s version of Sharia.

Then Newt reveals the true intentions of Imam Rauf: to disarm America in the fight against “radical Islamism.”

Except it’s all a lie. Here’s what Rauf wrote recently on the subject of Sharia. It’s not about beheadings and amputations as a form of justice, or about women being stoned or forced into hiding behind burkas. Those things are not Shariah, but rather part of the penal codes in countries that deny fairness and justice, according to Rauf.

The mosque issue isn’t about defending American values against “radical Islamism,” like Newt says. It’s about defending American values against blind prejudice, like the Constitution and Declaration of Independence say.

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Americans need to speak up against anti-Muslim language and actions.

April 9, 2010

Hatred of the “other” in America is on the down slope. We still have some way to go, but we’ve come a long way since “No Irish need apply” for employment, gays and lesbians barred from teaching,lily-white major league baseball, and deed restrictions against selling houses to Jews. Heck, we even elected an African-American President.

It seems like the only minority it’s ok to hate is the Muslims. Ann Coulter’s many fans laughed when she said that Muslims should not be allowed to fly on airplanes and should take “flying carpets” instead. When a Canadian Muslim student protested that she did not, in fact, own a flying carpet and asked how she should travel, Coulter’s rejoinder was “Take a camel.” Haha.

More serious hate-Muslim screeds are viral on the internet. And worse than the crude screeds are the seemingly analytical pieces laying out the danger we face from a growing Muslim population, (more…)