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Juan Williams's Shirley Sherrod moment

Now Juan Williams knows how Shirley Sherrod must have felt.

Williams was fired from his longtime post as NPR's senior political analyst late Wednesday because of remarks about Muslims that he made a couple of days earlier while wearing his other hat -- political analyst for Fox News. Appearing on "The O'Reilly Factor," Williams 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 a plane, I got to tell you, if I see people who are in Muslim garb and I think, you know, they're identifying themselves first and foremost as Muslims, I get worried. I get nervous."

NPR, in announcing the termination of Williams's contract, stated that the remarks "were inconsistent with our editorial standards and practices, and undermined his credibility as a news analyst with NPR." And arguably that's true -- if you ignore everything else he said. But when you listen to the whole segment, you come to a very different conclusion.

In fact, Williams argues passionately against painting all Muslims with the "terrorism" brush. He tells O'Reilly repeatedly how important it is to distinguish between the vast majority of Muslims and the small number of extremists who perpetrate violence. He draws an apt analogy, pointing out that in the wake of Timothy McVeigh's bombing of the Oklahoma City federal building, nobody said "we've got a problem with Christians." Is this a point of view that NPR cannot possibly abide?

Full disclosure: I've known Juan Williams for 30 years, and I respect him as a journalist and author. We're not hang-out buddies, and I strongly disagree with his point of view on some issues -- though we agree on others. For a long time, I've wondered how he could simultaneously inhabit the disparate worlds of NPR and Fox News. Some NPR listeners have complained, loudly and often, about Williams's Fox connection, and it's safe to say that NPR brass had reason to become sensitized to the issue.

But if he was fired for this particular appearance on O'Reilly, then he got a raw deal. His comment about getting worried or nervous when seeing people in "Muslim garb" on his plane were perhaps bigoted and certainly dumb: What would-be terrorist, in this day and age, would draw attention to himself by wearing stereotypical clothing? But the overall thrust of his argument on the O'Reilly show was to caution against bigotry and prejudice. I think most NPR listeners, if they heard the segment in its entirety, would agree.

By Eugene Robinson  | October 21, 2010; 3:18 PM ET
Categories:  Robinson  | Tags:  Eugene Robinson  
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Comments

"But when I get on a plane, I got to tell you, if I see people who are in Muslim garb and I think, you know, they're identifying themselves first and foremost as Muslims, I get worried."
___________________________________

Eugene, he chose to question that Muslims would indentify themselves as Muslims first and foremost. You conveniently left that out of your analysis. Why shouldn't Muslims, or anyone else, identify with their religion openly?

Posted by: veritasinmedium | October 21, 2010 3:34 PM | Report abuse

Juan Williams is too liberal for me. However, he got a bum deal. Too bad we can not tell the truth without being fired. I hope the first thing the republicans do is get rid of national radio. It is certainly not needed and is too close to the communist propaganda machine. This may simply be more proof that Obama is a muslim - a communist one at that.

Posted by: annnort | October 21, 2010 4:01 PM | Report abuse

you know, whenever i walk down a big city street at night and see a bunch of black kids wearing their pants around their knees i get kinda scared!....for the politically correct crowd i is now a racist...well juan (how is he pronouncing his first name now--wan or ju-an--) did exactly the same thing!....never trust a guy who cant figure out how to pronounce his name!

Posted by: KENMAREINC | October 21, 2010 4:03 PM | Report abuse

You claim to respect this man and then express concern that he could not appear on Fox and NPR. Do you mean he can not be honest on both?

Posted by: borntoraisehogs | October 21, 2010 4:05 PM | Report abuse

What an idiotic comparison.

Posted by: stinkingtuna | October 21, 2010 4:09 PM | Report abuse

Conservatives ought to love this...conservatives are always arguing for management to be able to hire and fire whoever they want, whenever they want. Conservatives don't support labor in labor and management disputes or is it just when the dispute is with someone they support, do they go against mgmt???Conservatives need to be more consistenet, stick with your nromal positions and say management has the right to fire if they want to. That's what you nrmally say...

Posted by: phillynick | October 21, 2010 4:12 PM | Report abuse

"His comment about getting worried or nervous when seeing people in "Muslim garb" on his plane were perhaps bigoted and certainly dumb: What would-be terrorist, in this day and age, would draw attention to himself by wearing stereotypical clothing?"

Exactly--maybe he was just fired for stupidity.

Posted by: loco71 | October 21, 2010 4:13 PM | Report abuse

Clearly, NPR heard the full story before firing him. On the other hand, the Ag Department fired Shirley Sherrod over a video edited by an ultraconservative blogger without hearing the whole speech.

Also, Shirley Sherrod's speech was about how she learned a lesson from her experience. The message of Juan Williams' spiel up there is that sure, he's being bigoted, but at least he knows he's in the wrong, unlike Bill O'Reilly. There are miles of difference between Shirley Sherrod and Juan Williams.

Seeing the whole thing just made me angrier, actually. Williams is deliberately playing into Fox's game by appearing as a mouthpiece for the left. This allows Fox to perpetuate two lies about liberals:

1. Liberals are all secretly bigots
2. NPR amounts to a liberal think tank.

If NPR was just looking for an excuse to fire Williams, I say they should have done it sooner. The clip up there is appalling.

Posted by: joshlct | October 21, 2010 4:15 PM | Report abuse

OMG---Fired for giving his honest opinion. I'll bet NPR would not have fired him for his honest opinion in favor of some liberal cause.

Posted by: sportsfan2 | October 21, 2010 4:15 PM | Report abuse

Robinson, bigotry is bigotry. Black men who are bigots are bigots. Black men who are sexist are sexist. NPR did the right thing. Get over it.

Posted by: Provincial | October 21, 2010 4:18 PM | Report abuse

OMG---Fired for giving his honest opinion. I'll bet NPR would not have fired him for his honest opinion in favor of some liberal cause.
---------------------------
They sure as hell would. NPR keeps a strict separation between reporters and pundits, and they have no qualms about firing any reporter who compromises his or her neutrality.

Fox News has no such policy.

Posted by: joshlct | October 21, 2010 4:20 PM | Report abuse

NPR went too far in firing Williams. He's not the only one who shares these concerns - even the French have fears of Muslims in their country who wear religious garb.

Posted by: wmaindependent | October 21, 2010 4:21 PM | Report abuse

For the who-knows-how-many-th time: Timothy McVeigh not only did not identify as a Christian (he was agnostic at that point), he did not commit his acts of terror in the name of Christianity. Furthermore, anyone who does so is not following Christ's teachings.

Too bad one cannot say the same of Mohammed and Islam.

There is no comparison, particularly in this day and time, between violent acts committed in the name of Islam and those perpetrated on behalf of other faiths. Stretch and bend as you will to find any motivated by religion that aren't tied to Islam. As the body counts mount for Allah, it will become increasingly difficult for the apologists to deny the simple fact that Islam IS violent at its core. And silence on behalf of the majority of adherents is still evidence of their complicity.

I couldn't care less about their "race"--I don't care if they're Arab, SE Asian, Central Asian, North African, European, or even my WASP-y neighbor kid down the street victimized by his/her liberal politically correct (mis)education. I respect their right to worship as they please; I only wish they accorded me the same respect. But I know better.

Posted by: BeauTochs | October 21, 2010 4:22 PM | Report abuse

NPR obviously has the right to terminate a contract with whomever they choose. However, it appears to me that it was a mistake on two counts. First, what is media if it can't be probing, questioning, and above all, honest? Second, the furor over the firing has gained much more attention than the original comment.

Posted by: rlwhitt | October 21, 2010 4:25 PM | Report abuse

"But when I get on a plane, I got to tell you, if I see people who are in Muslim garb and I think, you know, they're identifying themselves first and foremost as Muslims, I get worried."
___________________________________

Eugene, he chose to question that Muslims would indentify themselves as Muslims first and foremost. You conveniently left that out of your analysis. Why shouldn't Muslims, or anyone else, identify with their religion openly?

Posted by: veritasinmedium | October 21, 2010 3:34 PM | Report abuse
==========================================
How is that? No one questions people who wear crosses or Yamika's (sp?) And that was Jaun's assumption that they were identifying as Muslim First and foremost! But having said all of that, HE GOT A RAW DEAL!!

Posted by: Angryman | October 21, 2010 4:27 PM | Report abuse

Williams, like anyone who makes a comment expressing an actual fear they have shouldn't be fired, IMO. I'd like to know more about where and why he has the fear.

In the totality, he seems to be saying he favors a "don't ask, don't tell" policy for muslims. If they didn't wear the "garb" he wouldn't know they were muslim and he wouldn't then be scared.

Posted by: dinopello | October 21, 2010 4:27 PM | Report abuse

I believe the 9/11 " terrorist " , were wearing "Western Grab " at the time of the attacks...weren't they Mr Williams ?

Posted by: bofusco | October 21, 2010 4:27 PM | Report abuse

Too bad that the WaPo hierarchy won't bite the bullet and send Robinson to the same sideline bench as Williams. What a pair of sorry souls.

Posted by: fortenbaugh | October 21, 2010 4:28 PM | Report abuse

For a long time, I've wondered how he could simultaneously inhabit the disparate worlds of NPR and Fox News. Some NPR listeners have complained, loudly and often, about Williams's Fox connection, and it's safe to say that NPR brass had reason to become sensitized to the issue.

===========================================

Since many of the left have a pathological hatred for Fox News I also wonder with Williams being on Fox NPR's management was looking for an excuse to get rid of him.

Posted by: bbface21 | October 21, 2010 4:29 PM | Report abuse

I'm sorry, Eugene. Although I usually agree with you, I think you (and the Post's Editorial Board) are wrong here.

Williams' statement about Muslims in "Muslim garb" was bigoted, and that fact is not diminished by Williams' prefacing of his bigoted comment with "I'm not a bigot" or subsequent efforts to argue against bigoted stereotyping.

In fact, I would say that his initial comments about Muslims completely undermined his subsequent efforts to argue against stereotyping Muslims, because Williams did not address his own prejudices (to specifically point out the flaws therein); instead, he actually intimated that they were justified because of the attempted Times Square Bomber's comments.

Additionally, the Sherrod and Williams episodes aren't comparable. Williams' flap is distinguished from the Sherrod episode, precisely because of how they handled their own stereotypes: Sherrod addressed hers and noted that they wrong. She addressed the error of her ways. Williams did not. He tried to argue against bigotry while simultaneously embracing (and attempting to justify) bigotry.

NPR made the right call.

Posted by: associate20 | October 21, 2010 4:31 PM | Report abuse


It's not like he was some dimwit teabagger spouting off at the barber shop. You're held to a different standard when you're a tv talking head:


According to the NPR standards, written to "to protect the credibility of NPR's programming by ensuring high standards of honesty, integrity, impartiality and staff conduct," there are three relevant guidelines that, in this situation, seem to apply to Williams:

1. Don't appear on programs that promote punditry.

2. Don't appear on programs that are harmful to NPR's reputation.

3. Don't say things on non-NPR programs that the journalist would not say on NPR.

http://mediamatters.org/mmtv/200902130007

Go riddance to this fraud.

Don't kid yourself, if he had ever stood up to the Fox "news" gasbags he shared the stage with at Fox, they would have canned him FAST.

He took two paychecks for years by being a meek little token at Fox- now they will hold him up as a victim of "the liberal media's PC."

He'll be just fine continuing to be a fraud on Fox "news."

Posted by: losthorizon10 | October 21, 2010 4:31 PM | Report abuse

"Juan Williams is too liberal for me. However, he got a bum deal. Too bad we can not tell the truth without being fired. I hope the first thing the republicans do is get rid of national radio. It is certainly not needed and is too close to the communist propaganda machine. This may simply be more proof that Obama is a muslim - a communist one at that."

A. Federal funding accounts for less then 5% of NPR's budget. It's not a "national radio" in any sense. It does serve the public trust.
B. Communists don't believe in religion so there is no such thing as a muslim communist. Moreover, your last sentence defies all the laws of logic. Williams was fired by NPR, therefore Obama is muslim? Good one.

Posted by: lambsphotos | October 21, 2010 4:32 PM | Report abuse

I want to see NPR take the same attitude toward Nina Totenberg that they have taken toward Juan Williams. She has for years and years appeared on as a talking head of a television show not connected with Public Radio or Public Television. In addition, if one takes the time to look, she has said far worse things that Juan Williams said. For example, see her remarks about the late Senator Helms. Sadly, I will almost certain that NPR will not do this. Can anyone say hypocrites.

Posted by: jeffreed | October 21, 2010 4:33 PM | Report abuse

I too get worried and concerned when I see a bunch of Black guy's walking toward's me, Does that make me a racist? and I am Black.

Posted by: onesugar | October 21, 2010 4:33 PM | Report abuse

Whenever someone says "I'm not a bigot, but...", you know they are about to say something racist.

Posted by: sarals61 | October 21, 2010 4:34 PM | Report abuse

"Some NPR listeners have complained, loudly and often, about Williams's Fox connection, and it's safe to say that NPR brass had reason to become sensitized to the issue." Interesting isn't it though, that Fox viewers who generally disagree with most of Mr. Williams views have not complained, either "loudly"or "often" about his appearances on the network.

Which side is it again that has issues with tolerance?

Posted by: carolinadreams | October 21, 2010 4:34 PM | Report abuse

@annort: "I hope the first thing the republicans do is get rid of national radio. It is certainly not needed and is too close to the communist propaganda machine. This may simply be more proof that Obama is a muslim - a communist one at that."
------------------
You need a little information on a couple of things:

First of all, the Republicans getting rid of NPR would be something we still hold as illegal in this country...because contrary to your apparent belief that the "guvmint" funds it, most of NPR's money comes from ordinary shlubs like me...as in THE GRASSROOTS.

Next: when Ayatollah Khomeini took power in Iran, he targeted Communists particularly. Communists believe religion - any religion - is the opiate of the people, darling. Please learn the meanings of words before using them. A Muslim Communist, passionate in both ways, would be an interesting character.

And one more thing I don't get...your lot didn't like Obama's CHRISTIAN preacher and made all kinds of noise about that, but now Obama's a Muslim.

Does logic enter in, ever? Coherence?

The firing of Juan Williams is troubling, for what it's worth.

Posted by: Philosophe | October 21, 2010 4:35 PM | Report abuse

@lambsphotos, sorry for repeating points you had already made!

Posted by: Philosophe | October 21, 2010 4:37 PM | Report abuse

Juan is a tool, purely and simply.

Posted by: ilion23 | October 21, 2010 4:38 PM | Report abuse

I never liked Juan Williams. He has been making this kind of almost-over-the-top-but-not-quite comments for years. And the fact that both he and Maura Liasson work for NPR and a controversial conservative opinion network at the same time is really pushing it. But that said, bad call. Just don't renew the guy's contract. The guy ain't that good. That's how the Times got rid of the careless-with-the-facts Mr. Kristol. That is what they should have done here. Now they will pay a reputational price for their bad judgement.

Posted by: tarryh | October 21, 2010 4:39 PM | Report abuse

Gene, if Williams were white and had said, "But when I get on a plane, I got to tell you, if I see people who are black and I think, you know, they're identifying themselves first and foremost as blacks, I get worried. I get nervous," termination would have been the least of his worries.

Posted by: rbmagee | October 21, 2010 4:40 PM | Report abuse

Just because the two cases seem similar....

well they're not at all.

hack robinson does another hack job.... what a fraud.

Posted by: docwhocuts | October 21, 2010 4:40 PM | Report abuse

"For the who-knows-how-many-th time: Timothy McVeigh not only did not identify as a Christian (he was agnostic at that point), he did not commit his acts of terror in the name of Christianity. Furthermore, anyone who does so is not following Christ's teachings."
________________________________

Tell that to all the abortion clinic bombers and assassins who do it in the name of christianity. The history of christianity is full of bloodshed, atrocities and hypocrisy; just like every other major religion.

Posted by: lambsphotos | October 21, 2010 4:41 PM | Report abuse

Another case of political-correctness-run-amuck. The head of NPR should be the person fired.

Posted by: rhhkrnrw | October 21, 2010 4:41 PM | Report abuse

Mr. Robinson - how could any reasonable person be afraid of muslims and not be a bigot?

Could it possibly be due to the recent bombings in Kampala; or the the Times Square bomber; or the the nightclub bombing in Bali; or the train bombings in Madrid; or the the underwear bomber; or the subway bombing in London; or the airport bombing in Rome; or the hundreds of bombings in Baghdad (against fellow muslims); or setting the hotel full of guests on fire in Mumbai; or the shootings at Fort Hood; or the Khobar Towers bombing; or the bombing of the US embassy in Nairobi; or the US Embassy bombing in Dar es Salam; or the bombing of the U.S. Marine barracks in Beirut; or the bombing of Pam Am 103; or the World Trade Center; or the massacre at the 1968 Olympics; or the murder of the elderly cripple on the Archilles Laurel; or the shoe bomber; or the beheading of the totally innocent reporter Daniel Pearl; or the several bombings of Israeli school buses; or the slaughter of 300 school children in Beslan, Chechnya; or the van Gogh murder in Amsterdam; or the countless airline hijackings over the years; or the recent bombing of CIA officers in Afghanistan; or the bombing of the USS Cole ... or ... or ... ??

I guess you're right, Eugene - that darn Juan Williams fellow must be a bigot if he is afraid of muslims!!

Posted by: fizzlechip | October 21, 2010 4:41 PM | Report abuse

Totally different: Sherrod was a woman being persecuted by conservatives. That's unacceptable.

Williams is a man being persecuted by liberals. We're apparently cool with that, despite secretly sharing his biases.

Top 10 Ethnicities Feared by Juan Williams:
http://www.dailyscoff.com/?page_id=2895

...and YOU and ME too...


-jjg
Gravelle.us

Posted by: jgravelle | October 21, 2010 4:43 PM | Report abuse


This goes to show there is plenty of foolishness to go around. Williams was foolish to voice irrational fears. Robinson was foolish to side with those who faulted Williams for appearing on FOX. Plenty of foolishness followed with people taking issue. Yes, NPR can fire anyone they please, but they were foolish to fire Williams. Muslims should be free to wear whatever their religion prescribes as long as it does not offend the prevailing taste of a nation. But some children are forbidden to wear a cross in school, so there is a PC bending backward to be accepting of anyone but a member of the majority. It is time to get real, to get rational and to lighten up. We are engaged in the tyranny of the minorities. To prove my point, I will offer my apologies for anyone who was offended by the above. I didn't mean to offend any raving lunatic

Posted by: skatsivelos | October 21, 2010 4:47 PM | Report abuse

Well, we shouldn't have to lie about our fight/flight reactions. The guy who says he flinches when he sees a bunch of black, baggy pants kids and Mr. williams assertion that Muslims make him nervous, are not truly prejuciced, they are experiencing inate reactions enabling the person to protect himself. I have to admit, after reading of bear and mt. lion attacks, I do try to avoid both species as much as possible. But, I do hope I never get fired from a job because of it. Silly!

Posted by: jobhunter10 | October 21, 2010 4:48 PM | Report abuse

Gene

Please respond to annort! A Muslim and a communist. Pl..ease! It might be helpful to define an oxymoron for s/he.

puzzle

Posted by: puzzelbear | October 21, 2010 4:48 PM | Report abuse

20 years ago I took an Air Kuwait flight to Scotland. The service was lovely. The Muslim majority on the flight did not seem bothered by either several yarmulke-clad heads or my own uncovered hair.

What a world. What is troubling about Williams' firing is very simple: it is thought-policing based on one statement (that we know of from this piece). If Williams repeatedly said such things, different story. I would hate to lose a job over one stupid statement...I would have lost so many, as would most of us. I have always found Williams' contributions on NPR helpful. As for his presence on Fox...hey, we need "moles!"

Posted by: Philosophe | October 21, 2010 4:51 PM | Report abuse

I too get worried and concerned when I see a bunch of Black guy's walking toward's me, Does that make me a racist? and I am Black.

Posted by: onesugar |

No just black teenagers, teenagers in general (white, black, asian, hispanic, etc.; they look quite agressive and capable of attacking you.

Posted by: colonfr2002 | October 21, 2010 4:53 PM | Report abuse

@skatsilvelos, where are some children forbidden to wear a cross in school? Are you speaking of the U.S.? A public school? Please enlighten. Sounds scary.

Posted by: Philosophe | October 21, 2010 4:55 PM | Report abuse

Some cunning journalist should track down and interview all the minorities "let go" from NPR, starting with Juan. They'd find out on minority number two that a trend is developing. Ask Tavis Smiley. Ask Ed Gordon. There are many, many others. As a matter of fact NPR recently hired an African American Vice President after letting go one of the highest ranking African Americans at the company under "auspicious circumstances". They frequently hold "diversity summits" within the company from which - you guessed it - nothing changes. If they are indeed liberals, they prove the point that liberals can be (and certainly are) bigoted. The internal culture views this elephant in the room as extreme nepotism... but it's really institutional racism. At NPR - the supposed liberal world of fair and balanced. It's a career defining, put you on the map, get you your own show type of story for any journalist with the moxie to break it. But good luck getting it past your own editorial/management staff! The rule if media organizations is don't shine lights in our backyard and we won't shine lights in yours. And that leaves citizens in the dark. Thank GOD (and Allah & Buddha) for blogs.

Posted by: 20yrskinfan | October 21, 2010 4:56 PM | Report abuse

the man spoke what he thought.freedom of speech is still alive in this country.that is why aclu/naacp and the rest of the fools make $$$$$$$$$ when one mispeaks politically correct BS. juan williams,in my opinion is fortunate not to be associated with the npr propaganda machine

Posted by: pofinpa | October 21, 2010 4:57 PM | Report abuse

"Whenever someone says "I'm not a bigot, but...", you know they are about to say something racist."

Yeah, and I know that someone who makes a statement like yours you know they will claim how pure and prejudice free they are, which is usually a crock of dung.

Posted by: BEEPEE | October 21, 2010 4:58 PM | Report abuse

This may simply be more proof that Obama is a muslim - a communist one at that.

Posted by: annnort | October 21, 2010 4:01 PM

---------------------------------------------------------

Come on, really? A muslim communist? Your whole comment is absurd. Are you purposely trying to be obtuse or are you just plain ignorant?

Posted by: lithogene | October 21, 2010 4:59 PM | Report abuse

I am not sure what Mr. Williams, point is. There are Irish-Americans, Italian-Americans, Mexican-Americans, etc. who identify with another country first and foremost. We applaud that as being part of the mozaic we prouly call the US of A. Firstly what is wrong with Muslims attire?? We are friendly with many Muslim countries. Secoundly defining one's attire as Muslim is prejudical since most West African countires have national dress that would be considered "Muslim" but are worn by non muslims.
I fully support NPR's decision.

Posted by: atrinitoo | October 21, 2010 5:00 PM | Report abuse

Eugene,
African-American males commit a wildly disproportionate share of violent crimes in this country. So let's say i went on TV and said "because of all the violent acts by African-american males, when i get on a bus and see a bunch of them, it makes me nervous and fearful." How does that make you feel, eugene? should I be nervous seeing you walk down the street? Your double-standard is infantile and infuriating.

Posted by: olangar | October 21, 2010 5:02 PM | Report abuse

"But when I get on a plane, I got to tell you, if I see people who are in Muslim garb and I think, you know, they're identifying themselves first and foremost as Muslims, I get worried."
___________________________________

Eugene, he chose to question that Muslims would indentify themselves as Muslims first and foremost. You conveniently left that out of your analysis. Why shouldn't Muslims, or anyone else, identify with their religion openly?

Posted by: veritasinmedium
__________________________________
he was speaking freely and without preparation. I am sure if he thought about whether Muslims wearing religious garb meant any more than Orthodox Jews doing the same, he would scratch his head and say, duh, that's not very intelligent, is it, never mind - and return to his point - that it's logical to worry, but not proper to engage in O'Reilly's tactics.

Taking his entire comments in context, NPR was completely out of bounds, and it's completely appropriate to wonder why taxpayer dollars should continue to go to NPR or CPB (even before this behavior) simply because they don't seem to recognize legitimate discussion of issues. If they were indeed for full and unbiased discussion of wide ranging viewpoints, that's the best case for public funding, thin though it may be. If they aren't, there's no case for public funding. and no one who has read my posts will confuse me with being any where near the right.

Posted by: JoeT1 | October 21, 2010 5:03 PM | Report abuse

I see a parallel between Williams' firing at NPR and Rush Limbaugh's getting the axe at ESPN years ago for his dumb Donovan McNabb comments. Both made stupid statements, but as men hired to give their opinions, they should not have been fired for doing what they were hired to do.

We have two wrongs here. Williams' factually inaccurate comment (Muslim garb?!?!?) and NPR's political correctness run amok.

I do find it somewhat humorous that Williams is being defended by both lefties (Whoopie Goldberg) and righties (Sarah Palin & Mike Huckabee). I wonder what Limbaugh & Keith Olbermann think about it. Limbaugh can speak from experience, and one wonders which one will be KO's "Worst Person in the World" if he decides it's one or the other. Naah, he'll blame Bill O'Reilly. :-D

Posted by: KeithE4 | October 21, 2010 5:07 PM | Report abuse

"But if he was fired for this particular appearance on O'Reilly, then he got a raw deal. His comment about getting worried or nervous when seeing people in "Muslim garb" on his plane were perhaps bigoted and certainly dumb: What would-be terrorist, in this day and age, would draw attention to himself by wearing stereotypical clothing?"

I realize that it is a waste of time to say this, but think about what you are saying. You're saying that no "intelligent" terrorist would dress in Muslim garb in Western society for fear of drawing attention to themselves AS A TERRORIST. The implication is exactly what he is saying: people in Muslim garb on planes scare those who are not Muslims because of the strong likelihood that they might be terrorists on a suicide mission.

You're saying pretty-much exactly what he said, and what he got fired for, except that you're using a double negative: no real terrorist on a terrorist mission would be dumb enough to dress in Muslim clothing.

........

The larger issue here really is that he dared to voice his true opinion and an opinion shared not only by many Fox viewers but by MOST PEOPLE IN THE SAME SITUATION. And he got fired for being "politically incorrect" with his employer.

Now, we are going to ask the same question. Was the NPR response the right response to what happened? No, it wasn't. Plain and simple. They essentially engaged in political terrorism themselves, but instead of blowing him up physically, they just blew-up his career at NPR.

Posted by: chucklebuck | October 21, 2010 5:09 PM | Report abuse

Sorry, Eugene, he needed to go. In fact, his departure from NPR, a real news outlet, is LONG overdue. He's truly fair and unbalanced and his remarks were inappropriate (it doesn't matter what he thinks in private). I sincerely doubt that the next airline bomber will be identifiable by what he is wearing.

Posted by: gsross | October 21, 2010 5:09 PM | Report abuse

This was the dumbest thing NPR could have done, especially ten days before the election and the almost certain Republican victory in the house (which will decide on further support for NPR). It could have been, of course, the price NPR had to pay for the large amount of money Soros (coincidentally!) gave it a day earlier.

Posted by: gmdim | October 21, 2010 5:10 PM | Report abuse

Muslims have no connection to terrorism.

Anyone who says otherwise is either a bigot or someone whose saftey can no longer be guaranteed.

Posted by: scott3 | October 21, 2010 5:10 PM | Report abuse

This was the dumbest thing NPR could have done, especially ten days before the election and the almost certain Republican victory in the house (which will decide on further support for NPR). It could have been, of course, the price NPR had to pay for the large amount of money Soros (coincidentally!) gave it a day earlier.

Posted by: gmdim | October 21, 2010 5:11 PM | Report abuse


I am one who does not agree with Juan Williams all the time. However NPR was totally unclassy not firing him face to face, considering he has been there for many years. I saw that particular clip, and it was not anti-Islamic. Mr. Williams is a top notch Washington pundit and journalist. NPR now has made him a star, and he will land a big job on Fox or another of the News Networks.

Posted by: nickgoldblatt | October 21, 2010 5:13 PM | Report abuse

...and frankly I don't see a single thing about what he said that undermined his credibility as a journalist. He spoke the plain truth. You see people getting kicked off planes simply for wearing T-shirts with Arabic lettering, simply for talking among themselves in Arabic. To deny this, and to deny the issue, is simply not credible.

If anything Fox comes out looking golden for this, for having, at least for once, a truly fair and balanced discussion on the topic. If anyone is repressing the truth here it is NPR.

Posted by: chucklebuck | October 21, 2010 5:13 PM | Report abuse

I read that this incident was a culmination of sorts,
an event to use as an excuse to fire him. The whole store has not come out.

Posted by: sufi66 | October 21, 2010 5:14 PM | Report abuse

NPR=National Psychobabble Radio

Posted by: BBear1 | October 21, 2010 5:15 PM | Report abuse

In the past 10 years would a muslim or all muslims have been safer on a plane or in the vicinity of other muslims or on a plane/vicinty where there were no muslims?---- I pick my friends on their charachter and I am a just person, I treat others fairly and don't call others bigots when they fear attacks from areas that "seem" or have attacked them before. I try to recognize and understand them. I am still able to recognize unreasonable attacks or bigotry. Have a nice day. Bill

Posted by: Hawser | October 21, 2010 5:16 PM | Report abuse

As far as I'm concerned, anybody who says the words "You're right, Bill," to O'Reilly has no business working for a respectable news outlet. Because that dude is never right.

Posted by: jonfromcali | October 21, 2010 5:19 PM | Report abuse

Juan Williams is a rightwing uncleTomming Knee-Grow. The Foxite teabag got what he deserved! Scummy political commentators like Juan Williams will sellout their mammies for financial gain. Williams unrelenting attacks on the much needed health care reform; the stimulus spending to revive our economy and avoid a depression, and finanacial reforms to protect low and middle income Americans were assailed by this Foxite mouthpiece. And now the low-life is stereotyping all people who wear Muslim garb - an outrageous slur to the millions of law abiding Muslims across the world ... including my icon Muhammad Ali.

Robinson - your empathy for Juan Williams slur is misplaced, the joker was speaking from both sides of his lying mouth when he spoke to his master Bill Un'Riley.

Posted by: mdavis0505 | October 21, 2010 5:21 PM | Report abuse

annort you are retarded. You do not know what a Muslim is or a Communist. You are clearly a fan of that moron w you idiot.

Posted by: letemhaveit | October 21, 2010 5:23 PM | Report abuse

"His comment about getting worried or nervous when seeing people in "Muslim garb" on his plane were perhaps bigoted and certainly dumb: What would-be terrorist, in this day and age, would draw attention to himself by wearing stereotypical clothing?"

************************

All Muslims are a threat to our Western civilization, whether they are terrorists or not.

(Unless you agree that democracy is blasphemous, women are subhuman property, homosexuals should be murdered, freedom of speech and freedom of thought are immoral, dogs are unclean, and washing a pork BBQ sandwich down with an ice-cold beer is a sin.)

Posted by: pmendez | October 21, 2010 5:26 PM | Report abuse

***Are you purposely trying to be obtuse or are you just plain ignorant?***

I'm going to go with "just plain ignorant"...there are a lot of them out there now that the Tea Party has set up shop on our political scene.

Posted by: Jerryvov | October 21, 2010 5:26 PM | Report abuse

"Eugene,
African-American males commit a wildly disproportionate share of violent crimes in this country. So let's say i went on TV and said "because of all the violent acts by African-american males, when i get on a bus and see a bunch of them, it makes me nervous and fearful." How does that make you feel, eugene? should I be nervous seeing you walk down the street? Your double-standard is infantile and infuriating."

You can call it "bigotry" if you want but the fact that you feel that way is a very-real thing. The fact that it may or may not be bigotry does not invalidate your emotional or even your objective response to being in the presence of large numbers of black males in a confined space.

That is all this comes down to.
Quite legitimately, people in Muslim garb on airplanes scare other passengers. IT is not necessarily a *rational* response, though who really can say that it isn't, given the risk. But it is a *real* response, and as such should not be dismissed out of hand. No one has the right to tell someone else that their emotional response to a situation similar to that in which 2500 people died is "invalid".

Not to mention that it hasn't exactly been 10 years since the last time a Muslim tried to blow up a passenger plane. The connection is impossible to escape and the point raised by the author of this story makes that clear.

If anything what you are demonstrating here is reverse-bigotry: you feel that anyone who mentions religion or race as a cause of their fear or other emotional response is wrong, ipso-facto. So your response is bigoted as well, if that is your definition of bigotry. You're basing your response not on the race or religion of the person making the comment, but on the race and religion of the person they are talking *about*.

In any case it is clear to me: if the US government feels that Muslims present a significant security risk to passenger flights to the point where they probably immediately incur extra screening, how the hell can you really expect people to NOT feel scared when they see people in Muslim garb on airplanes? It would be utter denial -completely unobjective- to pretend that that isn't the case. The man is merely reflecting reality and if anyone is not being objective and credible, it is NPR and those who support a firing over this incident. I for one fully support his right to get on another station and speak his opinion, right or wrong, whether you think that it is "bigoted" or not. Doesn't affect his ability to be a credible *JOURNALIST*.

...so by that logic anyone who feels the same way, they aren't credible professionals in their field, either? LOL

Posted by: chucklebuck | October 21, 2010 5:27 PM | Report abuse

So the Post is supporting bigoted statements by "journalists" these days? the freedom of the press mindest where journalists circle the wagons around their favorites no matter how outrageous they may be is really undermining what little credibility mainstream journalism ahs left. I think I will make a contribution to NPR today.

Posted by: PepperDr | October 21, 2010 5:27 PM | Report abuse

annnort writes: "This may simply be more proof that Obama is a muslim - a communist one at that."

I mean, seriously. Wow. What does one say to that?

Posted by: donquixote3 | October 21, 2010 5:28 PM | Report abuse

@letemhavit:

"You do not know what a Muslim is or a Communist. You are clearly a fan of that moron w you idiot."

*************************

George W. Bush LUUUUUUUUUVS Muslims. The whole Bush family does. Remember Dubya holding hands with the Saudi prince? Remember his "Islam is a Religion of Peace" speech?

Posted by: pmendez | October 21, 2010 5:31 PM | Report abuse

Veritasinmedium,

They certainly can but all Mr. Williams is saying is that he worries whether or not any particular person so dressed is just a sincere adherent or a fanatical terrorist
and he honestly admits his unease. Let me ask you this: If you saw five Muslim men bowed in prayer together just before boarding your flight, would you be concerned? I certainly would. My point is that public displays of religion, while certainly fine, in some contexts can be disconcerting and misunderstood.

veritasinmedium writes;
"Eugene, he chose to question that Muslims would indentify themselves as Muslims first and foremost. You conveniently left that out of your analysis. Why shouldn't Muslims, or anyone else, identify with their religion openly? "


Posted by: AnotherContrarian | October 21, 2010 5:33 PM | Report abuse

He's been a Fox token/suck-up for a longtime. He was much better as an actual journalist than as a pundit, a role for which he's always been a lightweight. NPR should have canned him long ago.

Posted by: thebuckguy | October 21, 2010 5:33 PM | Report abuse

" @skatsilvelos, where are some children forbidden to wear a cross in school? Are you speaking of the U.S.? A public school? Please enlighten. Sounds scary."

Posted by: Philosophe

Yes, Philosophe, I am speaking of the USA in public schools, not only children but teachers as well. Three pulils suspended for wearing a cross in school in Des Moines, Iowa (Ironically, Des Moines means The Monks. Perhaps they should change the city's name as well). The Mann Middle School of Colorado Springs also suspended a student for wearing a cross. The Carney School District of Texas suspended children for wearing a rosary. A teacher in Oregon and one in Pennsylvania were fired for wearing a cross to school. There are many more examples. I hope you are now informed.

Posted by: skatsivelos | October 21, 2010 5:34 PM | Report abuse

And right at the beginning of a fund drive ?
Juan is an honest, forthright, "standup" fellow. So, who do I write to get NPR removed from my local college campus and stop all state and federal funding to these PC clowns???

Posted by: richard36 | October 21, 2010 5:36 PM | Report abuse

Williams is letting off some steam for all the years he spend living in the racailly segregated U.S. Canal Zone. Like the man said, he should now take some time off and look in the mirror.

Posted by: truth1 | October 21, 2010 5:37 PM | Report abuse

"He's truly fair and unbalanced"

...minor "Freudian slip" detected...

"and his remarks were inappropriate (it doesn't matter what he thinks in private)."

...huh? Is supposed to appear on Fox and issue only the Standard Fox Opinion?

Or maybe the Authorized NPR Opinion?

I do agree that NPR had a right to issue their opinion of him, but to fire him for voicing his own opinion in public is a clear violation of his first amendment rights. To say that he proved that he is not a "credible journalist" by saying something they consider to be "bigoted" again I missed the part where any and all demonstrations of bigotry mean that a journalist is "not credible". I grant them their right to state their opinion about who they want working for them. I do not grant them the right to fire one of their employees for stating their personal opinion on another forum, simply because they don't like what they hear. Hell if that's the case no employee anywhere would ever do or say anything for fear their employer will find out about it and fire them just for doing or saying it.

"I sincerely doubt that the next airline bomber will be identifiable by what he is wearing. "

...unless he's wearing a *bomb*. Look there's no way around this. You're not going to credibly argue that the risk that a person in Muslim garb on a plane is a terrorist is higher than it is for someone wearing Western clothing. You can call that "bigoted" all day long. That's a simple fact of life. Are we at the point where we deny the facts of life because they involve race or religion?

Posted by: chucklebuck | October 21, 2010 5:37 PM | Report abuse

Time for the taxpayer funding of NPR to be strictly voluntary.

Posted by: bobbo2 | October 21, 2010 5:38 PM | Report abuse

Maybe we should just get rid of everybody who has a disagreement with anybody else.
That way no-one has to express an opinion on anything...

Posted by: thanksforfish | October 21, 2010 5:46 PM | Report abuse

I bet if Juan Williams said that hey's afraid of white Republicans because they cling to religion and guns, he'd be the next CEO of NPR.

Posted by: goodoldboy1 | October 21, 2010 5:47 PM | Report abuse

I bet if Juan Williams said that hey's afraid of white Republicans because they cling to religion and guns, he'd be the next CEO of NPR.

Posted by: goodoldboy1 | October 21, 2010 5:48 PM | Report abuse

"I see a parallel between Williams' firing at NPR and Rush Limbaugh's getting the axe at ESPN years ago for his dumb Donovan McNabb comments. Both made stupid statements, but as men hired to give their opinions, they should not have been fired for doing what they were hired to do. "

Um, sure, except that Rush made a statement that was not only wholly inappropriate to the situation and to his role as a color commentator on an NFL broadcast, it was completely specious and speculative. To say that "Donovan McNabb was only "popular" because the NFL wants to see black quarterbacks do well just because they are black" is inane as well as pure speculation. It was just a stupid comment made at the wrong place and time, in the wrong forum, and he quite-sensibly got fired almost immediately for saying it, by the organization that paid him to do color-commentary not spew inane bigoted comments. What Williams said was completely factual and obviously true, simple common-knowledge, that just happened to have a religious component. But that's just how it is. Who seriously does not worry when they see someone in Muslim garb on an airplane?

I would bet that 99% of airline passengers feel a distinct tightening of their chest and a sharp spike in heart-rate the moment that they see someone in Muslim garb walk on the plane, not to mention every time they get up to go to the bathroom or start to fiddle around in their seat. You can monitor this objectively.

Posted by: chucklebuck | October 21, 2010 5:49 PM | Report abuse

I listened to excerpts of Juan Williams comments this morning. While I do not admire his manner of expressing himself, he has the right to express his concerns.
If we cannot express our differing opinions in this nation we will not be able to resolve differences either.
Institutions do not change the opinions of people simply because they will only allow the most politically correct version to be expressed. As an employer NPR probably has the right to ask their news commentators to be objective but it seems to me that the O'Reilly show was on FOX news and Williams was expressing a private opinion and it was identified as such. He does have a right to an opinion.

Posted by: OhMy | October 21, 2010 5:49 PM | Report abuse

Once upon a time, Juan Williams offered an insightful viewpoint. When he got the gig at FOX and it became increasingly clear that Rupert's TV channel was not "fair and balanced," as it was advertised, and the Juan was the token black face on the channel, I lost what respect I had for him. I questioned how he could stay at NPR and inhabit the paranoid-schizophrenic world of FOX.

We can talk of the differences between Williams -- media savvy -- and Sherrod, we can cry again and again about context (no one wanted to give context Rev. Wright). But we can also say Williams should have known better and he got a little -- well, careless and sloppy. Whatever good will and intentions Williams had with his NPR audience could save him from those who saw his FOX gig as a sellout.

Now with regard to his Muslim nervousness, I found it remarkable that instead of going "there," he didn't go to any easier analogy that would have better put his host Bull&%$# O'Reilly in his place. (O'Reilly who marveled while out to lunch with Rev. Al Sharpton at Sylvia's in Harlem that black people eat with silverware!!!)

Williams could have pointed to that ugly reflex so many white people have to check their wallets, hug their purses closer, cross the street, take another elevator or just not get too close to black people. (Just being "cautious," they say.) That reflex is not so different, just as unfounded, and applied with the same broad brush by people who know better. Including O'Reilly. Williams could have shown O'Reilly's bigotry is not limited to Muslims -- where he was wrong -- or to black folk -- where he was wrong -- or to Hispanics -- where he is wrong.

Let's face it: Williams played much to close to the fire while he was at FOX, and he got burned by being just a little careless and thinking he was one of "them".
I suspect NPR had been wanting Williams to sever ties with either FOX or NPR. This gave them the opportunity to do the deed.

The question now is will Williams sign up for a full-time job at FOX and will he totally lose his mind and his moderation? Will Williams be less "Juan" and more "Armstrong?"

Posted by: jade_7243 | October 21, 2010 5:55 PM | Report abuse

Williams : bigot :: O'Donnell : witch.

Posted by: mattintx | October 21, 2010 5:56 PM | Report abuse

This certainly says something about NPR and their narrow points of view. It is too bad they don't trust their viewers to decide on their own.

Posted by: sarno | October 21, 2010 5:57 PM | Report abuse

I just knew Pulitzer Prize winner Mr. Robinson is going to support Mr. Williams. I am sure he agrees with cab drivers not stopping to pick up folks based on race is right thing to do too.

Posted by: srivilliputhur | October 21, 2010 5:57 PM | Report abuse

How are his comments about his fear even considered bigotry? He is not saying anything false and negative about anyone else. He is only confessing a feeling he gets - fear. There are even no grounds for disagreeing with him. A man is entitled to have feelings, and in his case, I don't think he was even proud them.

Posted by: matt_1344 | October 21, 2010 6:00 PM | Report abuse

OK Gene I'll Bite: What IS the difference between openly refering to a basketball team with mostly black females as "Nappy headed Ho's" and referring to Muslims as all potential Sky jackers?

Gee's it seems in Robinson's world the only racism worth exposing is the White on Black varity-What the Heck do you think MLK would think about William's stereotype?

NPR made the right decision, just a little too late since Juan Williams has been trying to play it both ways for years( No one seems to want to remember his sexual harassment problems in the 1990s)

Posted by: oregonbirddog | October 21, 2010 6:02 PM | Report abuse

The only thing left for liberals to do in order to defend the firing of Williams is to play that race card.

Posted by: bugabbo | October 21, 2010 6:02 PM | Report abuse

When NPR CEO Vivian Schiller blabs that Juan Williams should have consulted his psychiatrist before speaking out on O'Reilly, Schiller and her ax-grinder NPR VP Ellen Weiss should get the phone calls for termination. Juan Williams isn't the loony bird here.

Posted by: TheGovernmentCaveMan | October 21, 2010 6:09 PM | Report abuse

So much for "free speech".


Posted by: lindalovejones | October 21, 2010 6:12 PM | Report abuse

Philosophe:

I posted an answer to your question on where were crosses were considered unaccesptable in the US. I cited Des Moines Iowa, Colorado Springs, Carney, Texas and the firing of two teachers in Pennsylvania and Oregon for wearing crosses. Oddly, the answer was deleted from this site. I wonder why since all the information was legitimate and can be gathered from the internet.

Posted by: skatsivelos | October 21, 2010 6:13 PM | Report abuse

Eugene, if Williams's overall thrust was anti-prejudice, why at his age has he not been able to free his own mind from such sterotypes?

See Muslim on plane. Get worried. Sterotype. Is the guy Pavlovian in his reactions?

Sorry but those are Juan's own loose-cannon words on Fox, and in fact are not consistent with any standards at NPR nor any other free-minded American.

Why. Because terrorism is not a "Muslim" province nor a "Muslim" issue. It is an extremists & thugs province and issue. All stripe, all ethnicities.

A frothing RWNJ in California was recently busted and pled guilty to threatening Nancy Pelosi and her family repeatedly after she got in the trenches to extend the right to health care services to all Americans. Another one in CA, just busted on his way to shoot up the offices of the ACLU and Tides Foundation in San Francisco.

These extremists, these terrorist thugs, are not Muslim.

Juan is an idiot for linking the two even for an unhinged moment, and is a known lackey for the media corp that incites terrorist lunatics I've mentioned. He is a joke at this point.

- new; Balkingpoints / www

Posted by: RField7 | October 21, 2010 6:19 PM | Report abuse

"..when I get on a plane, I got to tell you, if I see people who are in Muslim garb and I think, you know, they're identifying themselves first and foremost as Muslims, I get worried. I get nervous."

hey, Juan-o...the bad guys are not going to be so blatant as to wear *any* identifying "garb". Folks wearing something as obvious as "Muslim garb" should be the *last* ones you should worry about.

Williams should not have been fired for violating NPR's "editorial standards and practices"....he should've been fired for his own stupidity.

Posted by: williemyers | October 21, 2010 6:23 PM | Report abuse

Come on, Eugene! You know why he was fired. NPR is all about rich, white, Ivy-League liberals - and that's it. Only the rich white liberals listen to NPR. NPR is RACIST, Eugene, and we in the NAACP are going to call them on it. No more taxpayer money, Eugene! No more!

Posted by: georges2 | October 21, 2010 6:28 PM | Report abuse

For any adult who has ever had a job and been fired, it is usually a cumulative effect as to why one is fired. I think it might be safe to say that Juan was probably generally a lousy employee at NPR, and management saw an opportunity to get rid of him. Being fired is seldom a surprise, and it is probably Juan's "body of work" at NPR that is the culprit. Or, maybe like millions of other Americans, his job was outsourced.

To another point, as a 30 plus year veteran of the airline industry who has taken hundreds of flights, my experience has taught me that muslim terrorists fall way down on the list of my concerns when flying. I am more worried about shoddy maintenance, inaccurate weight and balance calculations, distracted pilots, and an overloaded and outdated air traffic control system. Do the math on the causes of airplane crashes.

Posted by: BigDaddy7 | October 21, 2010 6:29 PM | Report abuse

Come on, Eugene, it is manifest stupidity to drag out Timothy McVeigh and liken his doubtful religious affiliation to the terrorists who, purportedly in the name of Allah or Muhammad or some ayatollah, kill thousands while screaming "Allahu Akbar".

You must be afraid to walk outside considering that, at any given time, there have to be hundreds of those killer Christians all around you. Watch out, Eugene, some of your wacky Christian relatives probably have their sights leveled on you. How can you sleep at night knowing that?

Posted by: magellan1 | October 21, 2010 6:33 PM | Report abuse

"For a long time, I've wondered how he could simultaneously inhabit the disparate worlds of NPR and Fox News. Some NPR listeners have complained, loudly and often, about Williams's Fox connection, and it's safe to say that NPR brass had reason to become sensitized to the issue."-E. Robinson

I also think that Williams got a raw deal, that was more like a predisposition waiting for an opportunity on the part of NPR. However, when it comes to his journalistic "menage e trois" with NPR and Fox, it reminds me of a saying: "If you play with skunks, you'll smell like them"!

Posted by: D-0f-G | October 21, 2010 6:34 PM | Report abuse

I believe I heard as well this PM, that Juan has received a new $2 million contract from Fox.

Golly. Surely not...

The good thing is that the RWNJ money spigot from NewsCorp may be waning soon. Fox is down 21% in viewership in the last year, while the far more truthful MSNBC is growing, expecially Ed Schultz.

Thanks to ridiculous fearmonger lies like "death panels and Barney Frank causing the Bush economic crash, Americans are waking up.

Posted by: RField7 | October 21, 2010 6:38 PM | Report abuse

Eugene, with "friends" like you, Juan Williams does not need any enemies. As usual, you manage to steer every event, every comment, back to bigotry.

Hmmm.. What does that make you?

Posted by: r_loveland | October 21, 2010 6:39 PM | Report abuse

I wonder if they would have fired him if he had said that every time a see someone in a white sheet, I get nervous.

Posted by: tonyjm | October 21, 2010 6:40 PM | Report abuse

"But when I get on a plane, I got to tell you, if I see people who are in Muslim garb and I think, you know, they're identifying themselves first and foremost as Muslims, I get worried."
___________________________________

Eugene, he chose to question that Muslims would indentify themselves as Muslims first and foremost. You conveniently left that out of your analysis. Why shouldn't Muslims, or anyone else, identify with their religion openly?

?????????????????????????????????

They should be able to - and are able to: juan was expressing a fear he was indoctrinated to have.

But he pointed out in so many words that White supremacist Christians don't evoke the same fear in him - those like Timothy Mc Veigh - whose "garb" is merely western "white" folks atire (as opposed to the Klan Hood and burning cross garb that Christians are not allowed to [or advised not to] wear in their offices, on a plane, on the bench of a court, or in the White House [albeit house negroes who submit to the idea of white supremacist values are allowed to change the natural texture of their hair and wear it straightend as a sign of submission to white supremacist values - they may very well put fear into the hearts of unindoctrinated negroes and other minorities...])

Racism is at the root of this.

"What is racism?

Racism is racial prejudice that has been incorporated into the activities and procedures of major institutions, corporations, social systems (such as those related to housing, education, and health), and other arenas of major social activity (such as politics, the media, finance, and banking). Racism serves both to discriminate against ethnic minorities and to maintain advantages and benefits for White Americans."

"...the new racism describes a more elusive, political, almost abstract language of race which avoids blatantly negative racist statements in favor of political codewords and symbols. This new racism is partly based on a view of racial discrimination as being outdated and puts the onus of achievement and equality on African Americans and other ethnic minority people. If African Americans would, for example, stop clamoring for special treatment and simply work harder, they could achieve the American Dream. The idea is that it is African Americans= own deficiencies B whether they be greed, laziness, violence, and so on B that are the cause of their problems, not the history of slavery, segregation, discrimination, prejudice, and racism which is assumed to have come to an end...."
Excerpts from what was Written by ..., PhD
At the request of the American Psychological Association
Public Interest Directorate

Posted by: stephendavid2002 | October 21, 2010 6:40 PM | Report abuse

RACISTS!!!!!

Oh, I forgot, they are liberals.

Bummer.

Ah well, the really racist foxnews just gave him a 2m dollar contract.

Funny how that works out, huh?

Posted by: VirginiaConservative | October 21, 2010 6:50 PM | Report abuse

Yes. There IS a muslim problem. The world has a muslim problem. That's what that whole airport screening is all about. They, the muslims, have achieved nothing, are headed toward nothingness, and, in their jealousy, want to take down those who do NOT crave 72 virgin cockroaches.

We, the sane ones, have been given ample reason to be super careful around muslims. By whom? Hint: starts with letter "m".
_________
I know how to spell. They've "earned" their lower case.

Posted by: craigslsst | October 21, 2010 6:50 PM | Report abuse

FOX v. NPR?

Gene, you so one-sided, FOX don't have to pay you -- you just repeat OWEbama blather. Nothing new in your mind.

IMPEACH OWE-BAMA FOR INCOMPETENCE!

Posted by: russpoter | October 21, 2010 6:51 PM | Report abuse


I seldom agree with Juan Williams, but as a man, a professional person, he is top notch, none better. To be treated in such a shabby fashion by an underling to his talents is beyond disgusting. NPR, it is time to prepare your house for relocation.

Posted by: prossers7 | October 21, 2010 6:51 PM | Report abuse

@KeithE4: Stop and think about what you just said, in essence: if you are hired to give an opinion, any opinion is OK. Rush Gasbag may have been hired to render opinions, but football certainly didn't hire him to render STUPID/RACIST opinions. At least I don't think they hired him for that, but then again the question has always been- exactly why did they hire him?

Posted by: dirktazer | October 21, 2010 6:57 PM | Report abuse

and yet in giving J Wms. the exit door, NPR said that his remarks "were inconsistent with our editorial standards and practices..." which, I assume, that in a land of freedom of the press, as protected by the lst Amendment, then maybe NPR is not being consistent with its own editorial standards, unless they now have a new interpretation of the lst amendment: that speech is not protected unless it is politically correct. but if Wms had said, every time I see some poorly dressed white hillbilly from arkansas get on the plane in his dirty jeans and straw hat and a toothpick in his mouth, then gosh, the man must also have some sort of weapon concealed in his bibs, would he have gotten the exit door for that comment? probably not.... methinks that Wms should pursue his claim in court to see how the fed courts view the matter...

Posted by: RoguesPalace | October 21, 2010 7:05 PM | Report abuse

This election cycle's theme has been all about fear: fear of that Black Man in the WHITE House, fear of the Gay, fear of the Muslim fear itself. Finally a "responsible adult" (i.e., NPR) has stepped into this milieu and fired someone who should have know better than to succumb to the fearmongering that has made Fox News billions. He finally drank the Faux News "kook aid" and has paid the price. This is a teachable moment for civility, being responsiblle, being an adult, taking responsibility for one's actions (i.e., like Rick Sanchez did after he was fired for badmouthing Jews), and showing just a bit of courage in this foul atmosphere we are living in. Be a Man, Juan. Take ownage for what you said. You will be doing America of yesteryear a favor.

Posted by: dozas | October 21, 2010 7:11 PM | Report abuse

This election cycle's theme has been all about fear: fear of that Black Man in the WHITE House, fear of the Gay, fear of the Muslim fear itself. Finally a "responsible adult" (i.e., NPR) has stepped into this milieu and fired someone who should have know better than to succumb to the fearmongering that has made Fox News billions. He finally drank the Faux News "kook aid" and has paid the price. This is a teachable moment for civility, being responsible, being an adult, taking responsibility for one's actions (i.e., like Rick Sanchez did after he was fired for badmouthing Jews), and showing just a bit of courage in this foul atmosphere we are living in. Be a Man, Juan. Take ownage for what you said. You will be doing America of yesteryear a favor.

Posted by: dozas | October 21, 2010 7:12 PM | Report abuse

Mr. Williams is trying to have it both ways with Fox and NPR...he has been around for a long time.. NPR needs new blood. Apparently, he is an expert in "Muslim Garb" and knows it when he sees it. He does have the right to exit the plane.

Posted by: judithclaire1939 | October 21, 2010 7:13 PM | Report abuse

Regardless of how one feels about what Juan Williams said, the stark difference between the the very short leash that the other media (and pundits) are giving NPR over this issue and the endlessly long leash that the media always give to Fox is very striking. FOX commits journalist capital crimes on a daily basis to a mostly silent media. NPR takes a stand that reasonable people could disagree about and it's off with their heads.

Posted by: jmk833 | October 21, 2010 7:14 PM | Report abuse

I notice that the bigot King is only outraged when a negro gets fired for saying the wrong thing. He should go with Juan.

Posted by: carlbatey | October 21, 2010 7:19 PM | Report abuse

I notice that the bigot King is only outraged when a negro gets fired for saying the wrong thing. He should go with Juan.

Posted by: carlbatey | October 21, 2010 7:19 PM | Report abuse

Juan got it backwards, the progressive creed is: 'Do as I say, not as I do.'
By showing his true feelings, Juan stepped over the progressive's line of zero-tolerance for anyone who disagrees with their view of social justice.

Posted by: mtpeaks | October 21, 2010 7:21 PM | Report abuse

Can you imagine Robinson defending a white man if he said the same thing about blacks on a plane?

Posted by: OneWhoSpeaksTruth | October 21, 2010 7:26 PM | Report abuse

GOTCHA - Statement taken out of context.

Posted by: Airborne82 | October 21, 2010 7:30 PM | Report abuse

A communication outlet that owes its continued existence to public money shouldn't be in the business of sanctioning speech no matter how politically incorrect.

Posted by: slim21 | October 21, 2010 7:33 PM | Report abuse

Nailed it Gene. He's either an NPR kinda guy or a closet FOX sort of fellow. He liked cashing both checks but you know, at some point he must have asked himself...hmm, fox news attributes anything other than their typical red-meat diet as coming from either a brother or a woman. Am I being used?

He's stayed there all this time, cashing their checks, making Fox seem 'fair & balanced' to those who don't spend much time thinking about it.

I think he got a bad deal from NPR but you know what...he was overdue for some reckoning...

Posted by: AHappyWarrior | October 21, 2010 7:38 PM | Report abuse

Juan Williams is a Billo the Clown toady.

Therefore, he is a racist by definition.

I don't understand how Eugene Robinson can defend him.

Posted by: solsticebelle | October 21, 2010 7:46 PM | Report abuse

Gene, we love your columns but you are WAY WAY off base on this one!

Juan Williams is a pathetic testament to the profitability of self-hatred and selling out. Once a somewhat legitimate journalist at the Post, Juan in recent years has morphed into an "Uncle Ruckus" foil for Fox News's line up of broadcast bigots. He just sits there every week, listening and grinning as these clowns run down HIS people for an audience of millions.

Juan's recent Muslims-on-planes hate blast is likely just the straw that broke the camel's back at NPR. He's been spewing this bigoted nonsense for years.

Remember when Juan insulted the first lady Michelle LaVaughan Obama by calling her "Stokely Carmichael in a dress," and when he demanded that Obama "repent" for listening to a Rev. Wright sermon (this was right after BHO gave a stirring speech on race relations that moved everyone 'ceptin' Uncle Juan).

Sadly, we overheard someone say that "Juan Williams is a disgrace to his race ... the human race."

Juan, take Fox News's 40 pieces of silver and stuff them up your ....

Nuff said.

Posted by: broadwayjoe | October 21, 2010 7:50 PM | Report abuse

Gene, everyone is entitled to an off day. Trust us, your defending Uncle Juan was a VERY off day.

Take some time off, bro', or at least knock back some Glen Livet.

Posted by: broadwayjoe | October 21, 2010 7:55 PM | Report abuse

When I get on a plane, go in a store or walk down a street, I got to tell you, if I see young blacks who are in baggy garb and I think, you know, they're identifying themselves first and foremost as hoodlums, I get worried."

Posted by: fudador | October 21, 2010 7:57 PM | Report abuse

Eugene, I read your colums regularly and usually agree with you. And I also feel that Williams was censored by NPR because they have lost their guts and couch their fear with ‘intellectualism”.

However, I find you becoming highly predictable. Had exactly the same comment been made using exactly the same words, by O’Reilly, would you leap to defend in the same manner...? I mean, I agree with you, O’Reilly is... an opportunist who most likely, doesn’t believe half the nonsense he blurts out but really...

Check yourself, Mr. Robinson.

Posted by: 4Jaxon | October 21, 2010 7:59 PM | Report abuse

Fox just hired Williams. They will hire anyone who spews anti-Muslim bigotry and hatred. Expect more anti-Muslim propaganda from Williams now that he has a new string puller.

Posted by: fudador | October 21, 2010 8:00 PM | Report abuse

Progressives are America's Khmer Rouge.

Posted by: tulsa_dave | October 21, 2010 8:14 PM | Report abuse

NPR's employee grievance policy is, it would seem: ready, fire, aim.
Go ahead progressives, throw another one under the bus.
The people are watching.

Posted by: mtpeaks | October 21, 2010 8:16 PM | Report abuse

I don't usually agree with Robinson, but he's right on this one.

One mistake, though. Assuming Williams is an honorable man, there shouldn't be a conflict appearing on both NPR and Fox.

The problem is that people are getting brainwashed, no matter which version of the news they choose.

Sadly, we don't have a BBC that sticks with an objective view.

Posted by: Benson | October 21, 2010 8:18 PM | Report abuse

"I hope the first thing the republicans do is get rid of national radio. It is certainly not needed and is too close to the communist propaganda machine. This may simply be more proof that Obama is a muslim - a communist one at that."

If this comment wasn't so representative of an increasing number of people's inability to absorb a broad range of views and perspectives in their choice of media outlets, it would be laughable.

NPR provides a journalistic standard. Fox provides opinion and entertainment. How much money is NPR pumping into the political machinery of this country? We are a country increasingly guided by opinion-based news and reporting, fueled by money's ability to decide what we should know and care about. It makes us blind, and it makes us stupid. NPR news is an honorable hold-out.

I agree with NPR. They have a standard to withhold: a neutral voice free of sterotypes, profiling, and without bias or blatant political preference. As a journalist, Williams crossed that line.

Posted by: sdmackenzie | October 21, 2010 8:23 PM | Report abuse

I gave money to NPR in the past.
I shall not do so again.
When they lost their objectivity, they lost me.

Posted by: mtpeaks | October 21, 2010 8:23 PM | Report abuse

there's a delicious irony here in that williams is being fired for his "incosistency" with npr's editorial standards. But, of course, he espoused a view that is out of line with the one-sided view of npr that is in its own way as "fair and balanced" as Fox! (sarcasm alert). And i am a journalist who has worked at some of this country's most prominent media cos, including WP. I applaud the Post, actually, for taking NPR to task here. Anyone who thinks they are getting unbiased views from npr or fox, for that matter, is deluded. That day has come and gone for american journalism, alas.

Posted by: timgator | October 21, 2010 8:27 PM | Report abuse

Here's a quick test of Juan Williams statement for bigotry. Substitute the word African for Muslim. You get, "But when I get on a plane, I got to tell you, if I see people who are in African garb and I think, you know, they're identifying themselves first and foremost as Africans, I get worried. I get nervous."

Sounds pretty bigoted to me.

Posted by: rstephenw | October 21, 2010 8:31 PM | Report abuse

All in all, it's just another brick in the progressive's wall.
Tear down the wall, America. Tear down the wall!

Posted by: mtpeaks | October 21, 2010 8:31 PM | Report abuse

I rarely agreed with Mr. Williams views. To his credit, he balanced his passion with cheer and civility, all too rare these days.

His sin was to think for himself, and to admit he is nervous around Muslims on airplanes.

Apparently, there is no dissent allowed on the NPR plantation.

Posted by: historyStudent1 | October 21, 2010 8:39 PM | Report abuse

Attention PC libtards with no concept of analogy; Tim McVeigh was not a Christian, not religous at all. Stated closest thing to god for him was physics. His terrorist mission was avenge Waco or something like that. Ironic that Williams was fired even though he made the lame and stupid Mcveigh analogy on same interview.
Attention PC libtards with no concept of logic; obviously most muslims are not terrorists. However, the vast majority of terrorists are muslims. Think what life in the western world would be like if the west stopped importing these "people" 15 to 25 years ago.
The idiot islamophile defenders keep whining about muslim freedom of speech. What about freedom of speech for anyone critical of islami subhumanism? Are you PC libtards or NPR fascists aware that muslims IN THE US recently censored some South Park cartoons by threatening the cartoonist's with death. Muslims IN THE US also drove an American female cartoonist underground by threatning to kill her in the name of islam. How about cutting van Goghs throat in the middle of the street? How about rioting and killing each other over cartoons, trying to kill the cartoonist, etc.
Free Speech, yah right. The repub/teabaggers are retards and the PC libtards are ,well, PC libtards. This country is circling the bowl.
We stand shoeless in airports with 3 oz carry on, have Christmas day underwear bombers, constant terrorism incidents and alerts thanks to these imports. I wish the muslims would try their luck in China. They are too good for us.

Posted by: jm125 | October 21, 2010 8:40 PM | Report abuse

I rarely agreed with Mr. Williams views. To his credit, he balanced his passion with cheer and civility, all too rare these days.

His sin was to think for himself, and to admit he is nervous around Muslims on airplanes.

Apparently, there is no dissent allowed on the NPR plantation.

Posted by: historyStudent1 | October 21, 2010 8:41 PM | Report abuse

rstephenw has made the point. I think Juan Williams is an honest man. If you were to ask him if a commentator said "I got to tell you, if I see people who are in African garb and I think, you know, they're identifying themselves first and foremost as Africans, I get worried. I get nervous." would he think that person should be fired? Would someone please ask him?

Posted by: goaway1 | October 21, 2010 8:44 PM | Report abuse

at npr

all employees

are required to wear
their

politically correct thought burka

24/7

Posted by: ProCounsel | October 21, 2010 8:50 PM | Report abuse

NPR fired Mr. Williams for being a bigot and I am in total agreement with their decision. The next thing he would be saying is that all Rastafarians smoke weed. Mr. Williams is in the news business for fame and not to be an objectionable reporter.

Posted by: big_ax_to_grind | October 21, 2010 9:04 PM | Report abuse

Here is a story, a true one and I will NOT offer any conclusion.

Years ago, a woman I know saw some black kids in her neighbour's backyard, carrying things out. (The woman and the neighbour are both white). She wondered what was going on and whether she should call the cops.

Then she said to herself, "What is the matter with you? Would you call the cops if it had been white kids?" Feeling ashamed of herself for even having the thought, she did nothing.

The neighbours arrived in the evening to discover that pretty much everything in the house was gone.

Posted by: rjpal | October 21, 2010 9:06 PM | Report abuse

Progressives are such a dour lot.
They proselytize their view of social tolerance, but have zero-tolerance for those who disagree.
So dour. So sad. So disingenuous.

Posted by: mtpeaks | October 21, 2010 9:08 PM | Report abuse

"They sure as hell would. NPR keeps a strict separation between reporters and pundits, and they have no qualms about firing any reporter who compromises his or her neutrality."

Guess you've never listened to NPR. Goodness, is there anyone at NPR who is even remotely, distantly, minutely, "neutral"? I enjoy listening to NPR, but I never expect to hear anything like a neutral or objective analysis of any issue.

Posted by: ceannidghe77 | October 21, 2010 9:10 PM | Report abuse

Now Juan Williams knows how Shirley Sherrod must have felt.

______________

Yep, they are both black people thrown under the bus by their "fellow" "compassionate" liberals.

Posted by: bandmom22 | October 21, 2010 9:14 PM | Report abuse

What would Robinson say if an NPR reporter said, "When I walk down the street and two young blacks approach, I am frightened and want to walk down the other side." I personally am against politically correctness and I would not have fired Helen Thomas. But it is perfectly obvious that Robinson that he would react differently to a statement about young blacks.

Posted by: jhough1 | October 21, 2010 9:15 PM | Report abuse


I think the fact that as a NPR news - his statements about Muslims were inappropriate and insensitive and inconsistent with the extremely non-racism NPR policy.

It was a racist remark regardless of how politically correct some feel it is to whip up a frenzy (fear and hatred), over 911.

Juan Williams error in judgment is much more consistent with Fox Network, than with NPR - consider his audience when he made the crass remark !!! Fox viewers probably cheered him on...

Posted by: danglingwrangler | October 21, 2010 9:15 PM | Report abuse

Eugene, do you mean that Mr. Williams knows how Sherrod feels because he too was fired for making public racist comments? Watching the entire tape it was interesting to see the racist response from Sherrod's NAACP audience. They cheered when she told her story and before her weak lesson ending. Come on, when Mr. Williams started his comment by saying "I'm not a bigot but.." you knew he was in trouble. I'm sure it doesn't offend you when someone tells you "I'm not a racist but...you people..'fill in the blank'".

Posted by: ex-Navy | October 21, 2010 9:15 PM | Report abuse

There were comments he made both initially and subsequently that were, how shall we put it "insensitive." All is not innocent here.

Still, OnFaith has the racist Arun Gandhi on board, Farakkahn has been a guest on NPR, etc.

I'm not comfortable with what Williams said, less so that he doesn't seem to get the need to apologize. What if a white person said, "Let's face it. The majority of crime committed in New York is committed by black and Latino men. New Yorkers have every reason to fear them."
Would Williams be okay with that?

No, he's not a Hellen Thomas, a senile bigot, or a Trent Lott. So the question becomes, precisely where is the line, and how is it that we draw it so differently for different groups. Or are those lines changing?

The next time a black person says something antisemitic, which will be tomorrow, will he be fired?

Where is/are the line(s)? Williams' question and a good one.

Posted by: FarnazMansouri2 | October 21, 2010 9:29 PM | Report abuse

Juan Williams is another victim in the politically correct muslim wars.

Frankly I'm tired of stuff like "Muslim youth might be radicalized if we xyz", "99-44/100% of all muslims are law abiding (which law?) " and "it's not fair to tar all with the same brush because of few extremists".

Williams is right to question the allegiance of Muslims simply because 'moderate' and 'extremist' alike they profess affinity to a pan-nationalism that takes precedence over the concept of America.

If Faisal Shahzad (and there are doubtless many more clones) can turn from all things he yearned for and as in the 'Fon' movie turns into a bomber, then these folk are a more dangerous version of the moonies. THe religion is kool aid and anti-life.

We are all falling into the Stockholm Syndrome trap (Dhimmis in their parlance). To pacify these guys we have to subtly but significantly change our basic principles and adapt to their in your face practice of an amoral cult.

Posted by: JackFlashman | October 21, 2010 9:29 PM | Report abuse

Actually this is just another stepping stone for the Republicans to take over the House and Senate and get readied for 2012.
Keep doing the stupid stuff, Liberal Demophiles - you are supplying us with more ammunition to remove your lunacy than we could. Keep Odumbo talking, along with Reid and Pelosi and of course throw Slick Willie in, while he appears to resemble W.C. Fields more and more every day.
Let anyone that expresses any opinion about Muslims and the left knows they have to come down hard or the local president from Kenya will get upset.
Prediction for the day: January 21, 2011 - New bill to remove all public funding from NPR.
This should get the demophiles to elaborate their ignorance about life and the little world they live in.

Posted by: LarryinMD | October 21, 2010 9:38 PM | Report abuse

Robinson is such a predictable oaf. The ag hag committed her act of racism against whites - much to the delight and approbation of the naacp crowd.

Williams stuck the sacred cow - moslems.

Huge difference.

The real disgusting part of this is FNC giving him a huge contract. They should have let him soak in the socialist juices he milked for so many years.

Fork them all.

Posted by: VirginiaConservative | October 21, 2010 9:43 PM | Report abuse

Careful, Eugene...after Nov. 2, you may be next!

Posted by: SeniorVet | October 21, 2010 9:59 PM | Report abuse

Geez, what a bunch of claptrap by the wingnut goobers!! Juan Williams has been feeding at the FauxNeux trough for several years now!!!

JW would NOT have been paid by Murdoch to appear on his network if JW were to speak honestly. Fact is, JW is just a money-grubbing dweeb taking paychecks from two diametrically-oppossed bosses. Not exactly a shining testament to JW's ethics and honor.

But, putting that aside, from what JW has mouthed off on Faux over the years, I never, ever saw him as a liberal. Two, three years ago or so, I realized he was a bought person, and never a liberal. He never, ever supported liberal viewpoints, and Faux simply used him and constantly trumpeted his NPR affiliation as a way to fool the goobers that Faux was really "fair and balanced"

Geez, what a joke.

Posted by: osmor | October 21, 2010 10:00 PM | Report abuse

When someone says, "It's NOT about the money," it always IS about the money.

So when Juan says, "I'm not a bigot, but --," well ...

Posted by: broadwayjoe | October 21, 2010 10:05 PM | Report abuse

Mr. Robinson wrote:

"For a long time, I've wondered how he could simultaneously inhabit the disparate worlds of NPR and Fox News."

That is what I say. Why would any sane person go and gratify slimy individuals like O'Rilley or Beck or Hannaty with his/her presence . It is mind boggling. You can only ask for trouble by doing that.

Posted by: midas20874 | October 21, 2010 10:06 PM | Report abuse

You're no better than a fu%king Nazi Eugene

Posted by: Capitalist-1 | October 21, 2010 10:15 PM | Report abuse

Whoa, VirgConsv, you really hate everybody, doncha?

But I must point out your lie: Shirley Sherrod did NOT carry out any act of racism. The video whereof you speak, when viewed its entirety (not the edited teabagger version) shows Ms. Sherrod as a person who rose above the ignominy in which you appear to live in. She rose above her perceptions and embraced and helped those who were different from her.

A lesson that you, sadly, is not just unable to comprehend, but will apparently never rise to that level of nobility.

Posted by: osmor | October 21, 2010 10:17 PM | Report abuse

This is now the third article that you have written that I agree with in its entirety.

Posted by: EliPeyton | October 21, 2010 10:40 PM | Report abuse

Juan Williams should be very welcome at FOX News. Ruppert and the gang will use him until they use him up. I support NPR's action 100%.

Posted by: auntminnie | October 21, 2010 10:46 PM | Report abuse

You and I usually agree, but not this time. Pay me two million dollars and I'll go on Fox News and hate on Muslims, too. No group should have to turn on their TV and be subjected to that sort of hurtful talk by a representative of a news outlet and if that news outlet is to have any legitimacy, they should fire said person with unacceptable opinions they can't keep off the air. Oh, black men make me nervous, I'm supposed to be able to say casually, like they make everybody nervous. Oh, women give me the hives. Let Mr. Big Shot start telling O'Reilly how he really feels about the white man with the cameras rolling and see how long the teabags defend him as their new hero. The only reason they are all up in arms about this is because they hate Muslims, too.

Posted by: SarahBB | October 21, 2010 10:47 PM | Report abuse

False equivalence, Gene:

When Sherrod's full video was aired, it was clear her story was a parable AGAINST racism. Uncle Juan's rant was just a racist anti-Muslim hate blast to curry favor with the Faux News crowd. Period.

Posted by: broadwayjoe | October 21, 2010 10:48 PM | Report abuse

Just imagine if someone had said...

I'm not a bigot. But when I get on a plane, I got to tell you, if I see people who are in Jewish garb and I think, you know, they are identifying themselves first and foremost as Jews, I get worried. I get nervous.

What would the reaction be?

Posted by: victorponelis | October 21, 2010 10:49 PM | Report abuse

WOW!!!

THE LEFT HAS GONE BERSERK!!


THE LEFT WANTS TO KILL FREE SPEECH AND OPINION!!!!

10/21/2010 5:00:05 PM
Recommended (11)

10/21/2010 5:24:36 PM
Recommended (8)

10/21/2010 5:52:54 PM
Recommended (6)

10/21/2010 6:03:58 PM
Recommended (5)

10/21/2010 8:55:54 PM
Recommended (7)


10/21/2010 9:25:29 PM
Recommended (8)

10/21/2010 9:53:50 PM
Recommended (9)
10/21/2010 10:14:23 PM
Recommended (8)

THANKS FOR THE SUPPORT AND AGREEMENT:-)


THROW THE DEMOCRATS OUT!!

STOP GIVING TAX MONEY TO NPR!!!


CAN YOU IMAGINE THE OUTRAGE IN THE NYT AND WAPO IF JUAN

WAS FIRED FROM FOX(HE IS STILL ON FOX BY THE WAY)
HAHAHAHA!!!!!


Posted by: jjcrocket14 | October 21, 2010 10:51 PM | Report abuse

I wonder how some folks would have responded had Williams said, "When I see men in black tunics with white collars and crosses, I get nervous."

Posted by: FarnazMansouri2 | October 21, 2010 11:02 PM | Report abuse

Which one is it Juan, the N word or the M word? Your pick, Juan.

Posted by: aattallah | October 21, 2010 11:07 PM | Report abuse

I wish Leftists would stop comparing their own people to good people. Comparing Sherrod to Williams is like comparing Clinton to Lincoln.

C'mon, get serious.

Posted by: RealTexan1 | October 21, 2010 11:15 PM | Report abuse

NPR did the right thing. But it needs to get rid of one more FOX "analyst" on staff.

Before finding out that Juan Williams and NPR's other political news analysts, Mara Liasson, both worked for FOX, I actually wondered if NPR had been invaded by the body snatchers of FOX News. Their political leanings were never fair and balanced, a sure sign of FOX News kinship.

Now, could someone please come and snatch the other body back and deliver it to FOX?

Posted by: jackbarstoke | October 21, 2010 11:19 PM | Report abuse

I'm a muslin and get cautious when I see full dressed middle east muslims get on planes, etc.

Posted by: hairman | October 21, 2010 11:21 PM | Report abuse

I wonder if Bill O'Reilly would also agree that it would also simply be speaking honestly to worry that all Catholic priests could molest children, and therefore, to be safe, no children should ever be left alone in the company of any priest.

I'd think the percentage of exposed pedophile priests in the priesthood is greater than terrorists or even terrorist sympathizers among the Muslim faith. According to O'Reilly's logic, this is more than enough evidence not to consider any priest safe.

Posted by: capsfan7 | October 21, 2010 11:29 PM | Report abuse

What makes me nuts about this is that the story is all about Juan Williams. In this segment he is accompanied by two people who are spitting racist nonsense.

Mary Katherine Ham said that moderate Muslims in Germany get blown up if they speak about "moderation." That's ignorant and hateful nonsense, just as the whole fight over "assimilation" is based on prejudice. It is a strict construction of what it means to be a citizen of a nation.

"Americans" are not culturally nor philosophically monolithic. The people of Iran are not enemies of Americans nor are the people of America enemies of Iranians, unless they individually choose to be. Iraqis were not enemies of Americans under Saddam Hussein, and yet, who attacked who?

Governments do not speak or act on the behalf of all of their people, though many leaders often attempt to shroud their decisions in such a manner as to deflect and spread responsibility for actions and political risk-taking.

And furthermore, Bill O'Reilly absolutely does not speak or act on my behalf. This is all about politics and power and money.

I say fire Fox News. I would rather listen to NPR anyway, with or without Juan Williams.

And thank you Mr. Robinson - I will listen to and read your contributions too, because I think that you're great - just please don't go on Fox. It's political poison.

Peace.

Posted by: drlorax1 | October 21, 2010 11:30 PM | Report abuse

Juan, being on the Fox Network with its contentious atmosphere provoked you to make such a comment. Had you not tried to play both sides of the political spectrum this would not have happened. If you play with fire you're going to get burned.

Posted by: cajuncalvin | October 21, 2010 11:37 PM | Report abuse

NPR has just committed suicide. Congress will kill its funding this year.

Posted by: mike85 | October 21, 2010 11:38 PM | Report abuse

Will NPR fire Nina Totenberg for wishing Jesse Helms would get AIDS?

Posted by: shred11 | October 21, 2010 11:42 PM | Report abuse

Will NPR fire Nina Totenberg for wishing Jesse Helms would get AIDS?

Posted by: shred11 | October 21, 2010 11:42 PM | Report abuse

I do not know Juan Williams but it sure seems like he got rogered on this one. Fact is, a bunch of Muslim extremists took down the Towers and hit the Pentagon. Why wouldn't someone be nervous or afraid boarding a plane with folks dressed in the 'garb'?

Have we all become so politically correct that someone from the press gets canned for simply voicing an honest opinion?

Got to love them Libbies though, they seem to be all for tolerance and understanding. Unless or course, one disagrees with them or spouts off something they deem offensive.

Oh well, I heard on the radio earlier tonight that Fox had signed Mr. Williams to a contract that will pay him (2) million. Another one who won't go hungry anytime soon.

Posted by: WacoDave | October 21, 2010 11:49 PM | Report abuse

Shirley Sherrod? OK. Who in the world believes the NAACP invited Sherrod to speak so she could deliver a teachable moment about a white farmer. If you believe that, I have a bottle of air to sell you. Juan Williams wasn't invited to speak so he could deliver a teachable moment about Muslims. Williams was fired because he goes on Fox News.

Posted by: houstonian | October 22, 2010 12:02 AM | Report abuse

Eugene,

Your reading of this matter was the same as mine. I also looked at the contract stipulations and found that Juan did not speculate, verge into punditry, or make a prejudicial staatement, provided you read his careful qualifying comments. Having seen this kind of thing many times over the last 50 or so years, I recognize that someone was looking for a pretext to fire Juan on the basis of a contract violation, and they found one, albeit not a very good one. A clash of egos explains how Juan's personal observation could be strenuously misconstrued as an outrageously prejudiced statement,

Posted by: dlnewquist | October 22, 2010 12:02 AM | Report abuse

no black person will seat next to me on the plane, cause they are poor, loud and going to steal my luggage...i am truly worried...what a moronic logic of juan williams...tsk tsk

Posted by: benko1968 | October 22, 2010 12:03 AM | Report abuse

To all white suprimacists who pretend to be advocates of free speech but are
infact advocates of hate speech against american muslims:
What is the difference between firing juan williams - who was lead on
by infamous white suprimacist Orielly - and firing Rick sanchez - who said jews
control american media -?.

Posted by: MumboJumboo | October 22, 2010 12:04 AM | Report abuse

Why would seeing this context make me sympathetic to Mr. Williams? When I read the quote, I assumed that it was so crazy that it was taken out of a context that would make it more understandable. Now I know that it was just stupid. Also, Mr. O'Reilly referred to NPR as a, "liberal precinct." And Williams answered, "Yes!" So he agreed with NPR being dismissively insulted as biased. This is awful. I don't understand how Mr. Robinson cannot see how this clip makes the matter far worse for Williams. Personally, I don't think any of NPR's analysts except for the late Daniel Schorr have ever been worth a hoot. They just talk about spin. I hope they don't replace Williams. I wish they would sack all of their analysts and stick to reporting, which they do well. I can analyze the reporting myself, thank you very much.

Posted by: glabroushead | October 22, 2010 12:25 AM | Report abuse

Why would seeing this context make me sympathetic to Mr. Williams? When I read the quote, I assumed that it was so crazy that it was taken out of a context that would make it more understandable. Now I know that it was just stupid. Also, Mr. O'Reilly referred to NPR as a, "liberal precinct." And Williams answered, "Yes!" So he agreed with NPR being dismissively insulted as biased. This is awful. I don't understand how Mr. Robinson cannot see how this clip makes the matter far worse for Williams. Personally, I don't think any of NPR's analysts except for the late Daniel Schorr have ever been worth a hoot. They just talk about spin. I hope they don't replace Williams. I wish they would sack all of their analysts and stick to reporting, which they do well. I can analyze the reporting myself, thank you very much.

Posted by: glabroushead | October 22, 2010 12:26 AM | Report abuse

What does a 'Muslim' look like?? An Arab?? There are Christian Arabs. Head scarfs? Talking a foreign language? How about those Mennonites still speaking German?

How about those radical American Christianists who wear crosses and want to teach the Bible in public schools? They claim "God's" law over Secular (an insult) law and tell the world that they're 'first and foremost' Christians. Some of them even blow up Federal Buildings and rant about the evil, Constitutionally and Democratically elected POTUS???

If a newscaster claimed that "those people" made him nervous on airplanes because, after all, they believe that heaven awaits them if the plane blows up, the outcry would be huge.

Williams is guilty of pandering to fear and bigotry.

Posted by: thebobbob | October 22, 2010 12:33 AM | Report abuse

I disagree with Juan on most issues but have great respect for him.

Posted by: Jmacaco4 | October 22, 2010 4:23 AM | Report abuse

Where is the outrage from the NAACP? Now I understand why Limbaugh calls them the NAASCP (S=some)

Posted by: Jmacaco4 | October 22, 2010 4:26 AM | Report abuse


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Posted by: mafenjuoy21 | October 22, 2010 4:39 AM | Report abuse

Mr. Robinson,
If we follow your advice and watch the whole segment then the question is, why wasn't Williams fired earlier for agreeing to be a regular part of that circus? NPR's management stated that his firing was not a case of one strike and you're out. Even if you leave out his very dumb remark about muslim garb, he was not "passionately" defending anything. He was trying not to be drowned by the utter nonsense shouted by O'Reilly. When it suits him, Williams plays victim, as "the only black male" on the air at NPR. I would like to see you defending your profession, not what passes for journalism in programs like that.

Posted by: NoraGregor | October 22, 2010 5:34 AM | Report abuse

Any journalist with a shred of integrity and decency would refuse to be part of the ruse that NPR has become. I have supported NPR for all of their 40 years of existence. Their actions yesterday make me feel like a fool for being duped into believing they were principled and provided journalistic integrity and independence -- clearly they lack both. I wish I could get my money back -- that isn't going to happen, but they are not going to fool me into giving them another dime.

Posted by: johne37179 | October 22, 2010 8:07 AM | Report abuse

The whole verbal exchange as seen online tells a different story. The comment was completely taken out of context - these were not anti-Muslim remarks. The point he was making was that despite niggling fears on airplanes, which even he could understand, this is America and we must defend everyone's Constitutional rights. He also pointed out, for example, that the Atlanta Olympic bomber, Timothy McVeigh and the people who protest against gay rights at military funerals are Christians but he and other journalists do not identify them by their religion. (Nominal Christians, I would add - and McVeigh was an atheist, actually)

He was actually disagreeing with O''Reilly's generic comments about Muslims and 9/11.

This is really outrageous behavior by NPR!

Posted by: dmdoleman | October 22, 2010 8:22 AM | Report abuse

I was a fan of NPR off and on, I had to wade through misbegotten eras like when it use to be nicknamed Sandanista Radio but they got throught it, passionate and idiotic at times it was also insightfull and real. I do not think I will be able to get through an alliteration like the Soldout To Soros Radio besides being sort of corprate and greyly predictible it lacks that sonorous lilt.

Posted by: almorganiv | October 22, 2010 9:10 AM | Report abuse

Eugene usually I agree with you but Williams had been warned by NPR about his comments on Fox. He knew or should have known that his inflammatory statement would cause them to fire him.

If your boss tells you not to do something and you continue - don't be surprised when they say "bye bye".

Posted by: rlj1 | October 22, 2010 10:35 AM | Report abuse

Robinson: Williams was fired from his longtime post as NPR's senior political analyst late Wednesday because of remarks about Muslims...
----------------
No, Sir. He was fired for not towing the left line by appearing on a non-liberal media outlet. The thought police at NPR could not countenance that.

Can Mariah Liasson's firing be far behind?

Posted by: silencedogoodreturns | October 22, 2010 12:09 PM | Report abuse

NPR must have some sort of policy for not letting journalist express their personal opinions since they have apparently banned employees from going to the upcoming Stewart/Colbet rallies. I don't really see how this is any different except for Juan broke the actual "opinions" rule and was subsequently fired. Employers fire people for a pattern of rule violations all the time. Get over it Juan.

Posted by: marcojbrown | October 22, 2010 12:23 PM | Report abuse

I flew a couple weeks after 9/11 in 2001 from DC to Baton Rouge (connecting through Atlanta). On the return flight (Baton Rouge to Atlanta), three men who appeared to be of middle eastern and/or muslim descent (including one man wearing a turban) all stood at the same time and started walking to the front of the plane mid-flight. I recall the looks of shock/horror on the faces of everyone on that flight, and if we all magically had thought bubbles above our heads we all would have had the same thought: Holy **** not again! Turns out the gentlemen wanted to use the restroom, and after a stern talking to by the flight attendent, returned to their seats without incident (and without using the restroom).

So now I have to ask: am I (and the diverse population on this flight) bigots? Or did we have a sincere, emotional reaction to stimuli in front of us? None of us got up and tackled these gentlemen, nor did any of us, as I recall, make a scene afterwards.

I recall this event as I read about Juan Williams' comments. It seems that Juan is having a nuanced (I remember how important nuance was in 2003 and 2004) argument about how we must overcome our fears and misconceptions in order to protect the constitutional rights of others. It appears that he used himself as an example instead of a strawman argument. It kind of reminds me of the debate in the 2008 Democratic Primary when a moderator asked President Obama if he had any flaws. He was honest and said he needed to quit smoking. Edwards gave a crap answer about how he cares too much about the working class (Hillary Clinton gave a similar crap answer). So I guess Juan gets slapped down for having an honest opinion.

Posted by: gmfletcher12 | October 22, 2010 2:59 PM | Report abuse

veritasinmedium: "Eugene, he chose to question that Muslims would indentify themselves as Muslims first and foremost. You conveniently left that out of your analysis. Why shouldn't Muslims, or anyone else, identify with their religion openly?"
_________
When Christians publicly do anything in this country is seems to be PC to castigate them. What world do you live in? I live in one where we acquiesce to everything Muslim lest they be offended, yet, it is vogue to decry any public display of Christian devotion, symbols, or ideas. Get real.

Posted by: jay_thompson | October 22, 2010 4:45 PM | Report abuse

Juan Williams is a stooge, and now he is a wealthy stooge. If I see him at the airport he will scare me. I'm afraid he will bend over and ask a fox news conservative to .... him.

Posted by: manderso1 | October 23, 2010 1:27 AM | Report abuse

That is one way to get away from a cheap outfit like NPR who were trying to muzzle you anyway and to a contract which pays much better. Congratulations, Mr. Williams, sometimes you have to play the game to get away from little minds. This is done all the time in business. Amazing how NPR thought they were in control of the situation.

Posted by: repudar711 | October 23, 2010 12:00 PM | Report abuse

NPR's firing of Mr. Juan Williams for telling the truth about Muslims being a Terrorist Gang means that NPR is being politically correct to label them as a religion.

Isn't it obvious that NPR chooses to live in it fabricate delusion. What's bad is that NPR promotes that delusion onto the viewers.

NPR needs to restore its own integrity about telling the truth, and stop worrying about being politically correct, especially when their obvious politics is the Obstructionist Republican bent.

Adam of CA.

Posted by: AdamYoung2 | October 25, 2010 7:15 PM | Report abuse

Please don't confuse Juan Williams with Ms. Sherrod. The clip that was misused was taken directly out of context from a story that was intended to demonstrate its opposite. That Mr. Williams perhaps tried to do some damage control later in the interview is hardly the same thing.

I find it hard to believe that Mr. Williams' career has been damaged by losing his NPR position; I have indeed wondered if it wasn't his intention to move on and he knew the most stunning way to announce his choice. What is deeply disturbing is that NPR has received threats of violence for what is, in effect, a personnel decision.

Posted by: dclioness1 | October 27, 2010 5:33 AM | Report abuse

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