Mocking Prayer as 'Meaningless Platitudes' from 'Cowards,' Fearing 'Ugly Politics' of 'Islamophobia'

Vol. 28, No. 24

Prayer = “Meaningless Platitudes” from “Cowards”

“God Isn’t Fixing This”
“As latest batch of innocent Americans are left lying in pools of blood, cowards who could truly end gun scourge continue to hide behind meaningless platitudes”
— Front-page headline and sub-headline of the New York Daily News, December 3.

Co-anchor Gayle King: “I thought that headline was very powerful.”...
Co-anchor Charlie Rose: “We have to do something. As the New York Daily News said, God is not going to fix it. We have to fix it.”
CBS This Morning, December 3. The San Bernadino shooting was the work of two radicalized Muslims, an American citizen and his Pakistani-born wife.

Dear Prayer People: “Shut Up and Slink Away”

“Dear ‘thoughts and prayers’ people: Please shut up and slink away. You are the problem, and everyone knows it.”
Washington Post columnist Gene Weingarten in a December 2 tweet just hours after the shooting occurred.

Chuck Fears “Very Ugly” Politics of “Islamophobia”

“I have some fears of where this conversation goes, if this turns into being an American Muslim, an American citizen, and the investigation comes out that this is a radicalized situation and all this stuff. I think the consequences on our politics could be very ugly and very negative....It’s just going to raise the issue of Islamophobia again.”
— NBC Meet the Press moderator Chuck Todd on MSNBC Live, December 3.

Clueless Media Can’t Acknowledge Reality

“Motive elusive in deadly Calif. rampage”
Washington Post front-page headline, December 4.

“California Shooters Leave Clues, but No Clear Motive”
— Front-page headline in the Wall Street Journal, same day.

CNN Confused: Is It ISIS, or “Postpartum Psychosis?”

“Obviously, her involvement is a game changer in how enforcement, law enforcement will look at this. But I just have to ask you, could there be something else, anything else that could have explained her involvement? Something like a postpartum psychosis?”
— CNN host Erin Burnett on the December 3 OutFront, talking about Tashfeen Malik, who along with her husband, Syed Farook, perpetrated the San Bernadino attack that killed 14 and wounded 21.

First Reaction: Blame “Anti-Government” “Right-Wing”

“If it’s county employees having some type of a banquet there, that takes on more of a domestic militia group, an anti-government domestic militia group wanting to attack the government, than it does international terrorism, where they’re usually on a suicide mission.”
— CNN law enforcement analyst Tom Fuentes during live coverage of the San Bernardino shooting, December 2.

CNN anchor Erin Burnett: “We’ve only had two multiple-shooter incidents since the year 2000, and none of them have been anything like this. But if it is not an international incident, then what could it be?”
CNN legal analyst Harry Houck: “It could be some right-wing group, for all I know.”
— Exchange on the December 2 Erin Burnett OutFront.

Touting the BBC’s Indictment of American Society

“I don’t often start coverage of an event like this by talking about how other people are covering it, but a commentator for the BBC said overnight, ‘Just another day in the United States — another day of guns, chaos, and panic.’”
— NBC co-host Matt Lauer on the December 3 Today.

Seizing on Tragedy to Push Liberal Anti-Gun Agenda

“We are attacked by foreign terrorists and we go to war and spend trillions of dollars to defend ourselves. But we are terrorized daily by gun violence, and we do nothing? When will we, as a nation, finally decide to take action? What will it take?”
— Ex-CBS Evening News anchor Dan Rather in a December 3 Facebook post about the California shooting.

“The rest of the world looks at this as the one element of America that they find truly baffling....With gun violence, the United States is essentially alone in the world. There is no other country that has anything remotely approaching the kind of violence we do. The only country that comes even close is Yemen — which is, essentially, a war zone. So, they look at this, and they really can’t understand it; and they don’t understand how we put up with it.”
— CNN host Fareed Zakaria on CNN’s Wolf, December 3.

No Mass Shootings In Europe?

Host Chris Matthews: “But do you think we’d have mass shootings if we didn’t have guns? How would we have them?...We don’t have mass shootings all over Europe. We don’t have mass–”
GOP presidential candidate Rick Santorum: “What do you mean? We just had a mass shooting in Paris!”
— Exchange on MSNBC’s Hardball on December 1, just 18 days after the terrorist attack that killed 130 people.

Decrying “Xenophobic,” “Islamophobic” GOP’s “Politics of Fear”

“This was a very ugly week for Republicans in terms of their response on refugees.”
Washington Post columnist Ruth Marcus on CBS’s Face the Nation, November 22.  

“While President Obama’s response to the Paris attacks was roundly criticized for being a bit tone deaf and dispassionate, the Republican presidential candidates have been playing on the politics of fear in an extraordinary way....The politics of fear can be effective politically, but when does tough rhetoric turn into Islamophobia?”
Meet the Press moderator Chuck Todd, November 22.

Demanding More Media Activism to Fight “Poisonous Xenophobes?”

“On Friday the 13th, ISIS struck the heart of Western culture. By hitting Paris, they hit home. And so, maybe predictably, much of the rhetoric on TV and on the Web has turned angry, fearful, sometimes even xenophobic. Fear is poison. Fear is a crippling poison....Is the media doing its part to put things into proper perspective, separating real threats from red herrings?”
— Host Brian Stelter on CNN’s Reliable Sources, November 22.

Indicting Pro-Life Conservatives for Planned Parenthood Shooting

“Does the attack take the issue of Planned Parenthood off the table for Republican candidates, who don’t want to be seen or don’t want to risk taking advantage of a tragedy or being on the wrong side of a tragedy?”
Today co-host Matt Lauer, November 30.

“I don’t think, Paula, we can ignore the rhetoric that has been out there from the Republican Party, from the right. And the bottom line there is, yes, that is sort of tossing fuel onto something that’s already very, very flammable.”
— CNN legal analyst Sunny Hostin on ABC’s The View, November 30.

“Don’t tell me that there’s no connection between the hateful rhetoric that goes on with Republicans in this country, towards women in this country, and Planned Parenthood. It’s simply — there is clearly a connection, and the Republicans are in denial.”
— Ex-MSNBC host Ed Schultz in his November 30 podcast.

After a “Remarkable Life,” Why Stoop to Be President?

“Why do you want to be President? I mean, you’ve had a remarkable life. You’ve been in the White House....So, why are you doing it? Is it about history? Is it about the first woman?”
CBS This Morning co-host Charlie Rose to Hillary Clinton, December 1.

Obama’s Climate Summit = Fighting Terrorism

“There’s never been anything like it: 150 world leaders under one roof, in high-stakes talks targeting climate change....That the summit is happening at all is a show of defiance following the recent terror attacks here.”
— NBC reporter Chris Jansing on the NBC Nightly News, November 30.

“The recent terror attacks are tragic, and many lives will never be the same because of them. They should not be minimized. But climate change is another form of terror — and it’s one we’re wreaking on ourselves.”
— CNN’s “2 degrees” blogger John D. Sutter in a article, November 29.

Latest Global Warming Horror: New York’s Fall Fashion Confusion

“Fall has long been New York’s proudest season: when its denizens could forget all about the satanic summer, wrap scarves and tweeds around their pasty selves, and get back to the fast, hunched walking that distinguished them from tourists....But this has been the warmest fall quarter in 25 years. And while many people are concerned with global catastrophe — contemplating harrowing images of Greenland melting away and scorched earth in Los Angeles — others are just spinning wildly, like the confused leaves, to figure out what autumn in New York means for their wardrobes.”
New York Times writer Miranda Purves in a November 19 story headlined: “Too Warm to Be Cool.”

Sports Radio Conspiracy Mongering: Police Shootings “Not Accidental”

“At some point we have to start raising the question as to whether or not police killing black people like this is not accidental, and, like, this is kind of built into the equation, built into the design.”
— ESPN radio host Bomani Jones during an appearance on The Dan Le Batard Show, November 25, talking about the police shooting of a 17-year-old in Chicago.

A Peek Inside the Cozy Relationship Between the Media and the Clintons

“No one besides me would ask her [Chelsea Clinton] a question, and you and I would agree on them precisely in advance. This would be a relaxed conversation, and our innovative format (like a speedy Playbook Breakfast) always gets heavy social-media pickup. The interview would be ‘no-surprises’: I would work with you on topics, and would start with anything she wants to cover or make news on.”
— January 10, 2013 e-mail from Politico chief White House correspondent Mike Allen to a top aide to then-Secretary of State Hillary Clinton. The e-mail was exposed in a November 24 posting by the Web site Gawker.

“In the e-mail, I said I’d agree to the questions in advance. I have never done that, and would never do that....We didn’t do the interview with Chelsea Clinton, and would never clear our questions.”
— Allen apologizing in his daily Politico Playbook newsletter, November 30.

In “Love” With “Thoughtful” Hillary

“Full disclosure: I love them with every fiber of my being. I love the two of them. You know, after watching the Benghazi hearing for 11 hours, I felt I was watching — finally watching — Secretary Clinton, Hillary, defining herself, as opposed to being defined by people who don’t want to run against her, and I felt I was looking at a thoughtful, big-hearted, incredibly bright President.”
— Actor Ted Danson discussing Bill and Hillary Clinton on PBS’s Tavis Smiley, November 19.

PUBLISHER: L. Brent Bozell III
EDITORS: Brent H. Baker, Rich Noyes, Tim Graham
NEWS ANALYSTS: Scott Whitlock, Kyle Drennen, Matthew Balan, Jeffrey Meyer and Curtis Houck
INTERN: Michael McKinney