This from The Washington Times, which sums it up nicely:
"I'm not a bigot. You know the kind of books I've written about the civil rights movement in this country," Mr. Williams told Bill O'Reilly on Monday. "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 are identifying themselves first and foremost as Muslims, I get worried. I get nervous." On Wednesday, NPR terminated its contract with Mr. Williams, saying his remarks "were inconsistent with our editorial standards and practices, and undermined his credibility as a news analyst with NPR."
The irony is that Williams was on a television show to argue that as a nation, we must work to be honest about our fears and find ways to overcome them together.
This is in Juan Williams' own words from his piece at FOX News online: I took Bill’s challenge and began by saying that political correctness can cause people to become so paralyzed that they don’t deal with reality. And the fact is that it was a group of Muslims who attacked the U.S. I added that radicalism has continued to pose a threat to the United States and much of the world. That threat was expressed in court last week by the unsuccessful Times Square bomber who bragged that he was just one of the first engaged in a “Muslim War” against the United States. -- There is no doubt that there's a real war and people are trying to kill us.
To say that Williams was fired in a less than graceful manner doesn't begin to cover it. Not only did an underling do it, but it was done via cell phone and without the opportunity for Williams to be afforded a face to face meeting about it. Shades of Shirley Sherrod, anyone?
NPR's ombudsman states that Williams' firing was "poorly handled". That's an understatement. And, then the ombudsman goes on to spout the company line of their alleged fairness in reporting in comparison to the dreaded FOX News Channel. Is it a surprise that a liberal outlet would have a liberal ombudsman defending discrimination against a network that presents a different view than operating only for the enjoyment of liberal Americans?
Clearly, the elitists at NPR were looking for an opportunity to get rid of the man who had the nerve to step outside of the liberal vacuum and also work for a fair and balanced network. Liberals don't understand the concept of fair and balanced as they are so accustomed to hearing the news reported as they would like it to be. While presenting themselves as progressive in thought, they are, in fact, a myopic bunch. There has never been any question on which side of the political aisle Juan Williams falls. But, to the hypocrites at NPR, he fails the litmus test.
Is it progressive for the top of NPR management to state during a speech in Atlanta that Williams' opinions are for him and his psychiatrist or his publicist? Is it progressive to declare Williams' mentally unbalanced or a publicity hound for expressing his personal feeling in today's conversational arena? And, while she now claims she has apologized for her ignorant remark, she has not done so personally to Juan Williams. She is simply a coward. The name of NPR's CEO is Vivian Schiller. She deserves to be fired in the same way that Juan Williams was - disrespectfully and swiftly.
And the other networks and cable outlets? Complete silence. Cowards all. To them it no doubt was the correct thing to do - get rid of that liberal man who is capable of thinking for himself and courageous enough to try to get a conversation started. FOX News Channel, however, rose to the occasion. Williams, already employed by the network, was given a new, fat contract. He has risen above the debacle and won. He has a far larger audience on FOX News Channel than on NPR. No doubt that is also a bone of contention for the hypocritical progressives.
Here's the real point, though: While excusing the poor judgement on the Williams' dismissal from NPR, they have left the door open to scrutiny of these so-called standards utilized at the organization. How come the likes of Nina Totenberg and her tribe of far left liberals posing as professional journalists get a pass? How come they continue on in their employment with NPR as they merrily pursue other opportunities on air spouting their opinions? For example, this from The Wall Street Journal: Which raises a question: If these are NPR's standards, why does the network still employ Nina Totenberg?
Totenberg, according to her NPR.org bio, is not a news analyst but a correspondent--the position from which Williams was shifted because he became too opinionated. Yet Totenberg, a regular on PBS's "Inside Washington," has a long and continuing history of opinionizing, sometimes in very ugly fashion.
The most notorious example, noted by Reason's Michael Moynihan, is an old one. In July 1995, she said this about Sen. Jesse Helms: "I think he ought to be worried about the--about what's going on in the good Lord's mind, because if there's retributive justice, he'll get AIDS from a transfusion, or one of his grandchildren will get it." Wishing death on the senator's grandchildren is a particularly nice touch.
Overlooking these precious standards when the liberal expresses the correct opinion? Wink, wink, nod, nod. That's simply unacceptable.
Juan Williams has risen to the top with his newly expanded and definitely lucrative new contract with FOX News Channel. Let NPR eat his dust.