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  1. TopTop #1
    Barry's Avatar
    Founder & Moderator

    NPR Fires Analyst Over Comments on Muslims

    October 20, 2010
    NPR Fires Analyst (Juan Williams) Over Comments on Muslims


    NPR has terminated its contract with Juan Williams, one of its senior news analysts, after he made comments about Muslims on the Fox News Channel.

    NPR said in a statement that it gave Mr. Williams notice of his termination on Wednesday night.

    The move came after Mr. Williams, who is also a Fox News political analyst, appeared on the “The O’Reilly Factor” on Monday. On the show, the host, Bill O’Reilly, asked him to respond to the notion that the United States was facing a “Muslim dilemma.” Mr. O’Reilly said, “The cold truth is that in the world today jihad, aided and abetted by some Muslim nations, is the biggest threat on the planet.”

    Mr. Williams said he concurred with Mr. O’Reilly.

    He continued: “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 the 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.”

    Mr. Williams also made reference to the Pakistani immigrant who pleaded guilty this month to trying to plant a car bomb in Times Square. “He said the war with Muslims, America’s war is just beginning, first drop of blood. I don’t think there’s any way to get away from these facts,” Mr. Williams said.

    NPR said in its statement that the remarks “were inconsistent with our editorial standards and practices, and undermined his credibility as a news analyst with NPR.”

    The public radio organization said it thanked him for many years of service. Mr. Williams did not immediately respond on Wednesday night to an e-mail seeking comment.

    Mr. Williams’s contributions on Fox raised eyebrows at NPR in the past. In February 2009, NPR said it had asked that he stop being identified on “The O’Reilly Factor” as a “senior correspondent for NPR,” even though that title was accurate.

    Alicia C. Shepard, the NPR ombudswoman, said at the time that Mr. Williams was a “lightning rod” for the public radio organization in part because he “tends to speak one way on NPR and another on Fox.”

    Ms. Shepard said she had received 378 listener e-mails in 2008 listing complaints and frustrations about Mr. Williams.

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  2. TopTop #2
    Barry's Avatar
    Founder & Moderator

    Re: NPR Fires Analyst Over Comments on Muslims


    Mr. Williams said in an essay published Thursday on that he was fired “for telling the truth.”

    He continued in the essay: “Now that I no longer work for NPR let me give you my opinion. This is an outrageous violation of journalistic standards and ethics by management that has no use for a diversity of opinion, ideas or a diversity of staff (I was the only black male on the air). This is evidence of one-party rule and one-sided thinking at NPR that leads to enforced ideology, speech and writing. It leads to people, especially journalists, being sent to the gulag for raising the wrong questions and displaying independence of thought.”

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  4. TopTop #3

    Re: NPR Fires Analyst Over Comments on Muslims

    How are we ever supposed to fully understand our problems and begin to tackle them if people who express their respectful thoughts and opinions are met with hostility? I'm glad Juan brought this up, and I may disagree with him as I would be much more worried about airport security rather than a muslim dressed in the garb waiting to get on my plane, but still he shouldn't be met with such resentment for expressing himself. Its not like he said anything hateful about muslims. If you took a little kid and told them that muslims had crashed planes into buildings in the past, that kid would also be scared to see a muslim get on his plane. We wouldn't reject the kid for this, but rather realize how hard we need to work to change that kids mind and ease his phobia of muslims on planes.
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  5. TopTop #4
    Barry's Avatar
    Founder & Moderator

    Re: NPR Fires Analyst Over Comments on Muslims

    A good discussion of the recent practice of firing "news" people is here on Time:

    I think it might be a good idea if news people created more of a divide between "objective analysis" and personal opinion, but being valid and clearly "labeled".

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