Back in October, we posted the following piece demonstrating the difficulties a moderate, African-American liberal faced by not toeing the party talking points and being an independent thinker. This week, Juan Williams was back in the news, after being fired by NPR following comments that NPR felt did not meet their editorial standards. The comment made by Juan Williams explained how he felt when he gets on a plane and sees Muslims passengers in traditional garb. Juan said, “I mean, look, Bill, 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.”
What the liberal media and many seem to be editing out, is that this was his opening to his main point that it does not make him feel good, and we need to be careful to not let our own fears violate anyone’s constitution rights. Juan responded to his firing on FoxNews.com with an excellent opinion piece that should be read. NPR firing Juan has nothing to do with his comments, but from a witch hunt attack on him for having independent thought and not adhering to their liberal point of view. NPR CEO Vivian Schiller made that clear with her cheap shot yesterday that Juan should have kept his comments “between him and his psychiatrist”. If it was a private company I would say NPR has any right to fire anyone that would feel didn’t meet their “standards”. But NPR is a publicly funded entity – relying on our tax dollars (or from healthy donations from liberal idealogues) – and if they are going to choose to stand for a political position, they should be defunded and supported privately. Juan will certainly land on his feet and I appreciate his thoughtful differing opinion on many issues. The public should support his honest debate. If NPR does not agree with difference in opinion, the public should not support theirs.
Originally posted October 19th, 2009
Question: When is a blatantly racist comment, not racist? Answer: When its being said by a liberal, of course!
Last Thursday, on The O’Reilly Factor, frequent guest Juan Williams – a moderate liberal who isn’t afraid to “call’em like he sees’em” and liberal radio host Warren Ballantine joined Bill for a discussion about the recent attacks on Rush Limbaugh. The discussion turned to the “Barack the Magic Negro” parody created by Limbaugh. Williams contended the polarizing radio host was taken out of context and pointed out the song was making fun of an article written by a black man with the same title. Once the debate was near completion, Ballantine took a thinly veiled racist shot at Juan Williams, saying, “You can go back to the porch, Juan. You can go back. It’s ok.” Video of the comment after the jump…
Since making the comment, Ballantine has not been apologetic in the least. The Washington Times has been tracking his tweets on Twitter, and he’s been bragging about it. After the show aired, he tweeted “ok howd i do u hear me tell jaun back to the porch lmao”. He says it was not intended as a racial slur, but he hasnt clarified what he did mean by it either. What really caught my intention about the slur, was the lack of coverage is was receiving in the media. Several popular sites and newpapers (Huffington Post, CNN, NBC News and New York Times included) that love promoting racial controversy when it is coming from the right have completely ignored Ballantine’s comment. You know, the same news media that has been pushing the Limbaugh storyline for the last week? Then when a blatant case of racism comes from one of their own – suddenly their self-righteousness isnt so…righteous. Is there any doubt if a member of the right makes a comment like this they would be boycotted, protested, and ridiculed? Don Imus for instance. This double standard is what makes many not trust the organizations supposedly in charge of being an agent of truth for the general public. It is examples such as this that give the media their liberal bias label.
The other question this incident brings to mind, is how much does racial pressure effect minority’s political opinions? We know Hispanics and African-Americans identify with conservative policies to a much higher degree when they arent labeled as “Republican Ideas” or “Democratic Ideas”. Does seeing someone like Ballantine essentially punk Williams on air make others refuse to openly state their own beliefs? Although I dont always agree with Juan Williams I admire him for his ability to critically think about issues without following some sort of agenda. He believes in what he thinks is right, no matter what his minority leadership tells him he should believe. That’s has to be real tough.
Juan Williams hosted The O’Reilly Factor on Friday – here is the segment where he discusses the Ballantine incident with his conservative guests:
UPDATE: Juan Williams with Bill O’Reilly on Monday’s show: