Tuesday, April 06, 2010

Thank You Mainstream Media, You've Done a Real Bang-up Job

When Ann Coulter famously told a Muslim university student at the University of Western Ontario to "take a camel", one could actually hear the Canadian mainstream media blow a gasket.

The incident was played and re-played over weeks, as if to justify the claims by a great many left-wing commentators that Coulter is a racist reactionary, and should have been stopped at the border.

The story turned out to be a little different. Coulter had been asked a long and rambling question involving a number of topics ranging from travel options to Muslims (who Coulter had suggested, allegedly in jest, should all be on the no-fly list) to whether or not Muslims should be converted to Christianity.

While addressing the portion of the question about conversion, the cohorts of the student began to heckle Coulter, at which point she told the student to "take a camel".

In the eyes of the Canadian media, all of this was terrible, terrible stuff. So when an individual involved with Mississauga, Ontario's Palestine House -- an organization that receives public funding -- told Jewish Defense League protesters that "you need another Holocaust", one would imagine that the mainstream media would have been absolutely apoplectic.

Guess again.

It is worth noting that the individual in question seemed to feel agitated enough by the JDL protesters that he shouted that phrase -- among other things (he also told the protesters that "We love jihad. We love killing you.").

Of course, one may wonder what it was that brought the JDL out to protest in the first place.

As it turns out, the JDL was protesting a speech by Abdul Bari Atwan. Atwan is the editor in chief of Al-Quds Al-Arabi, a London-based newspaper serving Britain's Muslim communities.

During an interview with a Lebanese television station in 2007, Atwan famously remarked, "If the Iranian missiles strike Israel, by Allah, I will go to Trafalgar Square and dance with delight."

The missiles Atwan refers to, of course, are nuclear missiles. Considering the size of Israel, it wouldn't take very many nuclear missiles to wipe it off the face of the Earth.

So not only did Atwan say he would celebrate a nuclear attack on Israel, but said he would celebrate an attack that would very much constitute a genocide.

While a great many Canadians who may not have necessarily known who Ann Coulter is in the weeks leading up to her speaking tour of Canada were bombarded with numerous outrageous comments made by Coulter, the visit by Abdul Bari Atwan, who had actually spoke favourably about the prospect of a genocide, went largely unchallenged.

One can say what they will about Ann Coulter's visit. There are many valid reasons to object to the things she has to say. But when given the choice between a deliberately-provocative right-wing polemicist and someone who has actually suggested he would celebrate genocide, it's easy to tell which is the more harmful and dangerous to Canadian society.

A responsible mainstream media wouldn't have ignored Coulter's history of outrageous comments. But, by the same token, a responsible mainstream media most certainly should not have ignored Abdul Bari Atwan.

It ignoring that Atwan/Palestine House story, Canada's mainstream media has done Canadians a tremendous disservice. It seems that extreme lunatics are speaking at Canada's publicly funded institutions far more often than we think they are.


  1. Another home run. The MSM has been failing to keep it fair and balanced. All offside comments back-stories need to be reported. Why are the right wing views being framed as more dangerous, bigoted or hate speech?

    Lazy or bias?

  2. My suspicion is: combination of both.

    Some media outlets were well aware that this speech -- and protest -- were going to take place. The Toronto Star send a reporter out who accused the JDL of spewing racist comments.

    Apparently "you guys need another holocaust" is OK, though.


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