Monday, November 09, 2009


In response to the New York Times article "Fort Hood Gunman Gave Signals Before His Rampage," Donald Douglas of the righty blog American Power writes:

For the New York Times, there's an agenda -- an agenda of political correctness that bends over backwards not to alienate the Muslim community and the apologist for fanatical Islamism. Of course, if this had been an evangelical Christian opening fire at a conference of imams or murdering another abortion doctor, there'd be no talk of not "rushing to conclusions." Christians as a body would have been tried and convicted in the court of public opinion, found "consumed be hatred" and "intolerant of diversity."

And, well, he's right -- there's no way an early story on a Christian-right murderer would have contained a sentence like this:

Officials offered little insight into the motive, saying that they believed it was "the act of an isolated individual" but that they were also looking into "his history, his family, his associates."

No, wait, I'm sorry -- that was from New York Times coverage of a murder in which a Christian rightist has been charged -- a story about the assassination of Dr. George Tiller entitled "Abortion Doctor Shot to Death in Kansas Church," from May 31, 2009.

Number of times the word "Christian" appears in that story: zero.

Number of times the word "Christian" appears in "Seeking Clues on Suspect in Shooting of Doctor," published by The New York Times the following day: zero.

Hell, even though it's called "The Wages of Hate," the word "Christian" doesn't even appear in Judith Warner's Times blog post on the subject, from June 11.

And there was this in the June 7 Times:

Although Operation Rescue worked for years to close down Dr. Tiller's clinic, his death was never the outcome Mr. [Troy] Newman wished for, he said. Of the man charged with killing Dr. Tiller, he tearfully said, "This idiot did more to damage the pro-life movement than you can imagine."

... "I have been racking my brain to see if there was something I could have done," Mr. Newman said of Mr. Roeder.

Dr. Tiller's clinic was the one -- the big one -- Mr. Newman had always hoped to close. Still, he said, if it closed now it would be no victory for Operation Rescue.

"Good God, do not close this abortion clinic for this reason," he said. "Every kook in the world will get some notion."

And on June 26, the Times quoted Mark S. Gietzen, the chairman of the Kansas Coalition for Life:

As he explained himself, Mr. Gietzen did something unexpected. He spoke admiringly of the man he reflexively referred to as "Abortionist Tiller." He said he was "very smart" and a "great businessman." He said that if he had been in town he would have attended Dr. Tiller's funeral to pay his respects.

"A worthy adversary," he said. "He was right back at us."

If that's how the Times indicates that it believes the anti-abortion movement is "consumed by hatred," I'm struggling to imagine how the stories would read if criticism were withheld.


(By contrast, the article on the Fort Hood shooter that so offends Mr. Douglas contains forms of the word "Muslim" 8 times, of "Islam" 5 times, and "Arab" 3 times. Oh, and the first sentence is "It was still dark on Thursday when Maj. Nidal Malik Hasan left his aging apartment complex to attend 6 a.m. prayers at the brick mosque near Fort Hood." That's Douglas's idea of a story avoiding the subject of Islam.)

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