22 October 2010

Juan Williams and Bigotry

First, here's what Juan Williams said on Bill O'Reilly's show:
"I'm not a bigot, but when I get on a plane, 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."
Source - NY Daily News (22 October 2010)

Bigotry is an emotional response and not a rational response.

I can understand having an emotional response but I don't understand the refusal to critically examine this sort of emotional response before opening one's mouth and sharing it with the world.

If a person like Juan Williams is unwilling to do this sort of critical reflection, then maybe this person might lose his media job for very justified reasons - namely stupidity.

I'm not too worried about Juan Williams - he won't starve to death due to unemployment. He was recently hired after this incident by Fox News.

In a post-9/11 world, the person wearing "Muslim garb" (whatever the frak that might be) is the person who is least likely to be planning a serious terrorist attack. Remember the real 9/11 terrorists wore Western-style clothing so the could blend in. A terrorist who is trying to actually do the job will blend in successfully.

I close this blog post with a clip from Family Guy that pokes a bit of fun about our current xenophobia for those who dress differently:

8 comments:

Mary said...

I am surprised Juan lasted so long. A really thoughtful person would not work for FOX News. He is just like manyfolks, money comes first. Then whines later when he is caught.

Robin Edgar said...

Juan Williams is no less a bigot than some of the "fundamentalist atheist" U*Us I have the misfortune to know. I will never forget how one of them who will not be named here but *will* be named on The Blog That Cannot Be Named expressed his disgust that Muslims in traditional Muslim garb had set foot in the Unitarian Church of Montreal during the first (and last. . .) celebration of Creation Day at said self-described "Unitarian Church". I have seen plenty of other examples of U*U anti-religious bigotry that are just as bad as what Juan Williams said on Bill O'Reilly's show and, to be fair, not *all* of the anti-religious bigotry comes courtesy of the "fundamentalist atheist" subset off U*U humanists although it does seem that the bulk of it comes from them. I have however seen "Christian" U*U ministers engaging in anti-Catholic bigotry and have heard of the occasional case of anti-Humanist bigotry as well.

Quite frankly Juan Williams' bigotry, as presented in this blog post is mild compared to most of the anti-religious bigotry I have seen U*Us engage in.

Robin Edgar said...

I guess I should have said that Juan Williams is no *more* a bigot than some of the U*Us I know since the quote attributed to him is in fact less bigoted than some of the things that U*Us, including U*U clergy and even a UUA President, have said either publicly or privately.

Joel Monka said...

Was what Juan said worse than this quote by Andrei Codrescu on "All Things Considered"?: speaking of the Christian concept of the Rapture- the bodily ascent of believers into heaven- he said, "The evaporation of 4 million [people] who believe in this crap would leave the world a better place." Though NPR was forced to apologize, Andrei's contract was not cancelled.

Snowbrush said...

"In a post-9/11 world, the person wearing "Muslim garb" (whatever the frak that might be) is the person who is least likely to be planning a serious terrorist attack."

Ah ha, but if they think that YOU think that, then they might wear Muslim garb to make you think that they are not a terrorist. Then again, they might dress as followers of Krishna--or else as a convention of little old white ladies. Paranoid? Not me.

Robin Edgar said...

"or else as a convention of little old white ladies"

Are you suggesting that Muslim extremists might disguise themselves as 97% white Unitarian*Universalists? ;-)

Snowbrush said...

"Are you suggesting that Muslim extremists might disguise themselves as 97% white Unitarian*Universalists? ;-)"

At last, I have found someone who thinks like I do! Marry me, baby!

...Oy, I checked, and you're a guy. That's okay, I'm straight, but I can change.

Robin Edgar said...

I don't even make passes at girls who have moustaches Snowbrush, so I guess I will just have to politely decline your same-sex marriage proposal. ;-)