You've probably heard by now if you watch the news - NPR has fired Juan Williams, one of their political analysts, for comments he made about Muslims on the O'Reilly factor. The comment made, by the way, concerned an honest expression of a reaction he sometimes has towards Muslims. He goes on to argue, against O'Reilly's nuttery, that we have to make the distinction between radical, militant Islam, and the rest of Islam.
I really don't have much to say about this, except that NPR's decision enrages me. His comments in no way effected his position as a news analyst for NPR, nor do they reflect on NPR. Further, they're not even bigoted (a distinction has to be made between "This is how I react to things sometimes" and "this is how one should react to things).
Frankly, I find what NPR has done to be disgusting. They supposedly fired Williams over an ethical violation, but in reality it is they who have committed the ethical violation. I don't care how disgusting they found his comments, if it did not effect his work at NPR, they had no business firing him. Doing so was dishonest of them as a news organization. They acted on the basis of their political bias, which is not, in theory, the duty of a news organization. They were apparently seeking to protect their reputation, but as far as I'm concerned they have only damaged it.
This isn't even mentioning the terrible way they went about his firing.
By the way, it's not that Juan Williams is some favorite of mine - I hadn't even heard of him before today. I'm even inclined to distrust people who are willing to go on the O'Reilly Factor - the pundits at Fox are all of them nuts. No, it's the principle of the thing.
NPR, you've really screwed up this time.
Here's the full segment from the O'Reilly Factor (try not to get to distracted by O'Reilly being a jerk).