Oct 21, 2010

Juan Williams, the most important man in America today

I find it hard to get too worked up about NPR firing Juan Williams for saying he gets "nervous" when he sees Muslims on an airplane. One could certainly argue that NPR handled the situation poorly from a PR perspective; and any inconsistency in how NPR applies its policy prohibiting analysts and reporters from offering opinion is certainly newsworthy. My main takeaway: If Williams wasn't supposed to offer opinions on cable news shows, NPR should have fired him long before he stumbled into an issue that's so politically charged.

What have we learned from all of this? First, conservatives who didn't like NPR before don't like NPR even more now. Second, despite repeated claims that NPR is a taxpayer-funded operation, it really isn't. Third, getting fired by the "lamestream" media is lucrative. Last, pundits yelling the loudest about censorship aren't necessarily the most consistent on the issue. From Bloggasm:
The conservative media watchdog Newsbusters claimed today that “Juan Williams has done nothing wrong” and that “what he said echoes what the vast majority of Americans believe.” This is the complete opposite of the view it took on Nasr’s rather anodyne tweet. “CNN has finally taken a step in the right direction in removing a terrorist sympathizer from their ranks,” the blogger wrote several months ago. “It’s a shame it took this amount of publicity and attention from organizations like the MRC to get the job done, as Octavia Nasr should never have been granted the position of authority to begin with.”

1 comment:

Gina T. said...

Gary, did you see reports that Mr. Williams now has a job with Fox? $2 million? Nice gig.