Daniel Greenfield reports: The Southern Poverty Law Center, an organization that many critics on the right and the left have described as a mail order scam disguised as a civil rights organization, responded to the terrorist attack in Garland, Texas, by adding one of its targets, artist Bosch Fawstin to its list of hate groups. Not only is adding the victim of a hate crime to a list of hate groups, a perverse thing to do, but it raises real concerns.
While Bosch Fawstin is in the headlines now because of his brush with death in the ISIS terrorist attack, he’s a talented artist who was nominated for an Eisner award and whose work has been praised by Chuck Dixon and Alex Toth among others.
— Amy Mek (@AmyMek) May 13, 2015
And some in the comics community find SPLC’s targeting of an artist after an attack meant to suppress his work to be troubling.
At The Outhousers, Jude Terror, who makes it clear that he disagrees with Bosch’s politics, asks some interesting questions.
If Fawstin belongs on the list of hate groups, does someone like Frank Miller, who wrote a similarly-themed (but less well-received) comic about killing Muslims called “Holy Terror,” belong there as well?
If so, what does that mean for major Hollywood movie studios promoting movies based on his work, such as the upcoming Superman v. Batman: Dawn of Justice, set to launch a multi-movie franchise?
Or for that matter, for DC Comics, who promoted Miller’s return to writing Batman comics as a major event just last month?
What about Charlie Hebdo, which the world was pretty much unanimously celebrating in January after an attack on their building killed several cartoonists and editors, and whose defiant “Je Suis Charlie” slogan can still be readily be found on t-shirts and social media avatars. Read the rest of this entry »
“There’s no justification for violence. But…”
“I’m a First Amendment absolutist. But…”
“You have every right to do what you did. But…”
Erik Wemple writes: Though perhaps not verbatim, those are the sentiments that have spilled from cable airwaves — and, for that matter, non-cable airwaves — in the days since Sunday’s violent incident in Garland, Texas. Two gunmen were shot dead by a police officer as they attempted to mount a terrorist attack on a “Draw Muhammad” cartoon contest — an event whose by-product is offensive to many Muslims. The Islamic State terrorist group claimed responsibility for targeting the contest, which was organized by Pamela Geller of the American Freedom Defense Initiative (AFDI).
“And who’s being treated as the public enemy on cable? The woman who organized a cartoon contest.”
Authorities are investigating ISIS’s claim of responsibility; they’re checking the electronic communication histories of the attackers, Elton Simpson and Nadir Soofi; the White House has called the episode an “attempted terrorist attack.”
“This is problematic to me, because I wonder whether this group that held this event down there to basically disparage and make fun of the prophet Mohammed doesn’t in some way cause these events.”
— MSNBC’s Chris Matthews
And who’s being treated as the public enemy on cable? The woman who organized a cartoon contest.
MSNBC’s Chris Matthews, in speaking with a guest: “This is problematic to me, because I wonder whether this group that held this event down there to basically disparage and make fun of the prophet Mohammed doesn’t in some way cause these events. Well, not the word ‘causing’ — how about provoking, how about taunting, how about daring? How do you see the causality factor here?” (Taunting is a form of expression)
“To her enduring credit, Fox News’s Megyn Kelly has been screaming all week about the folly of the ‘too-provocative’ crowd.”
Donald Trump on “Fox & Friends”: “What is she doing drawing Mohammed?…What are they doing drawing Muhammad. Isn’t there something else they can draw?…I’m the one who believes in free speech probably more than she does, but what’s the purpose of this?” (Must protected speech have a Trump-approved purpose?)
“The American media folded into a crouch of cowardice and rationalization. The Associated Press’s statement said it would ‘refrain from moving deliberately provocative images.’”
Comedy Central’s Larry Wilmore: “You know another thing that’s horrific, Pamela Geller? Intentionally putting innocent, unarmed security guards in danger so you can make some bull[—-] free speech argument.” (A bad moment: When comedians are rating others’ free-speech arguments)
“Nothing justifies the attack, the violent attack. There is no
— CNN’s Jake Tapper to Geller
“It’s one thing for someone to stand up for the First Amendment and put his own you-know-what on the line, but…”
— Fox News’s Greta Van Susteren
Fox News host Martha MacCallum to Geller: “I absolutely get where you’re coming from. I’m not sure you went about it the right way.” (Let the government decide on the “right way”!)
“A judgment has emerged that preaches compliance with the notion that this particular form of expression means you’re asking for it.”
CNN host Alisyn Camerota to Geller: “And nobody is saying that this warrants the violence that you saw. I mean I haven’t heard anyone in the media saying that it’s okay for gunmen to show up at an event like this. Read the rest of this entry »
Associated Press Tries to Shame Cartoon Event Organizer Pamela Geller for Not Expressing Regret for Successful Police Action That Saved Lives and Killed 2 Armed TerroristsPosted: May 7, 2015
PHOTO: Pamela Geller at AP headquarters, where she said she had no regrets over TX cartoon contest that left 2 dead: http://t.co/cELdeaeqGd
— The Associated Press (@AP) May 8, 2015
“If he is capable to wage individual jihad in the Western countries that fight Islam — such as America, Britain, France, Canada, and others of the countries that represent the head of disbelief in waging war against Islam … If he is capable of that, then that is better and more harmful.”
It was not immediately clear when Nasr Ibn Ali al-Ansi was killed.
A U.S. official confirmed that al-Ansi was dead, but would not say whether his death was the result of a drone strike.
“By the grace of Allah the great (and) the almighty, we have made efforts in external work, and the enemy knows the danger of that. We are preparing and lurking for the enemies of Allah. We incite the believers to do that.”
— the late al-Ansi
The senior commander was well known for giving a lengthy statement after the Charlie Hebdo shooting in Paris, claiming AQAP was responsible for the attack.
“But if that is impossible, and he is able to serve his brothers on the front lines, then let him immigrate, for it is better.”
— From al-Ansi’s lengthy statement after the Charlie Hebdo shooting in Paris
Twelve cartoonists, editors and other magazine staffers were killed by two gunmen on January 7. The attack was revenge for the magazine’s depictions of the Prophet Mohammed, al-Ansi said then.
He blamed not only Charlie Hebdo, but also France and the United States in his statement.
Al-Ansi urged all would-be jihadists to wage war at home, when possible, as opposed to traveling abroad. Read the rest of this entry »
BRUSSELS (AP) — The Dutch anti-Islam political leader who was guest of honor at the Prophet Muhammad cartoon show in Garland, Texas, where gunmen opened fire is calling for more such exhibitions as a show of defiance.
“The most important reaction to the attack on freedom of expression was to make sure that everybody sees this.”
Geert Wilders of the Dutch PVV Freedom Party said in a telephone interview on Thursday that he wants to set up a special Prophet Muhammad cartoon show at the Dutch legislature in The Hague and said all parties who back freedom of expression should rally around the idea.
[VIDEO] The First Amendment Protects Blasphemy, Offensive Speech, Cartoons, & You: Megyn Kelly with Guest Eugene VolokhPosted: May 6, 2015
If We Blame Pamela Geller’s Group, ‘The Jihadis Are Winning’
And Kelly opened her show tonight by again scolding the “rush to condemn the event organizers” with “nary a mention of the radical Islamists who sought to murder them over a cartoon.”
She reiterated that free speech is protected, “no matter how abhorrent,” and you don’t have to endorse it to defend it. And with all the focus on scolding Pamela Geller‘s group, Kelly said, “if this is where American sentiment stands on this, then the jihadis are officially winning.”
Kelly accused the media of drawing a “moral equivalence” between people who do offensive things and people who kill over those offensive things. Read the rest of this entry »
John Nolte writes: Ayman Mohyeldin is advertised by NBC News as an objective reporter. This objective reporter became infamous earlier this year for lying about and smearing a decorated veteran sniper, the late Chris Kyle, as a “racist” who went on anti-Muslim “killing sprees” in Iraq.
Mohyeldin, who is a Muslim, used his MSNBC perch Tuesday, not to condemn the murderous savages in his faith who attempted to murder Pam Geller and Geert Wilders at a free speech event, but to demand a culture change in America that would not “allow” people to engage in what he calls “hate speech” against Islam.
[The full transcript of his fascist bed-wetting is here]
And as one would expect from NBC News, through omission, Mohyeldin lied through his teeth in order to pretend Islam is the only religion in America openly ridiculed.
As though “The Book of Mormon” wasn’t currently running on Broadway; as though San Francisco doesn’t hold a blasphemous “Hunky Jesus & Foxy Mary“” contest every year; as though “Piss Christ” wasn’t funded by the American government; as though Hollywood didn’t spend billions producing one film after another trashing Christianity — without being challenged by anyone on “Morning Joe,” Mohyeldin crybabied his lie about Muslims being singled out in America. Read the rest of this entry »
Man says he faces death threats after winning grand prize for drawing of prophet
“I don’t want to say where. There are Muslims out there who want to kill me.”
Bosch Fawstin netted $12,500 for winning the contest’s grand prize as well as the “People’s Choice Award” for his drawing depicting Muhammad wielding a sword and saying, “you can’t draw me!”
“I do it because we have been told we can’t. I’m not just provoking people for the hell of it.…Provocation is freedom of speech—it’s not separate from it.”
— Cartoonist Bosch Fawstin
In an interview on Tuesday, the cartoonist was vague about his whereabouts, saying only that he lives somewhere in the U.S.
“I don’t want to say where,” Mr. Fawstin said, also declining to say his age. “There are Muslims out there who want to kill me.”
“Mr. Fawstin said he was raised by Albanian Muslim parents in the Bronx but eventually renounced his faith. He said the 9/11 terrorist attacks motivated him to use his art to denounce Islamic extremism.”
He has drawn a comic book called “Pigman,” featuring a hero who battles “pigotry” and his arch nemesis, SuperJihad. He said he has also drawn several dozen cartoon renderings of the Islamic prophet. Read the rest of this entry »
In ‘The Self-Fulfilling Prophet Drawing Competition’, David Francis and Elias Grol join the chorus of elite journalists siding with the the gunmen and blaming the victims.
In describing Geert Wilders and Pamela Geller, David Francis and Elias Groll do get one thing right. They accurately describe the look of Geert Wilders’ hair.
“He’s a silver-haired politician who warns about the threat of what he calls totalitarian Islam to Europe.”
David Francis and Elias Groll have apparently paid little attention to the murderous Christian and Jew-hating supremacist ideology that’s flourishing, quite comfortably, under the flag of official Islam, and yes, spoken in prayers every single day, all over the globe.
More loaded adjectives to describe Pamela Geller. (though they neglected to discuss her hair)
“She’s a preening ideologue who thinks Muslims use their daily prayers to curse Jews and Christians.”
FP Writers David Francis and Elias Groll are really upset and offended by the free speech provocations of figures like Geert Wilders and Pamela Geller. That is a very good thing.
Labeling Geert Wilders and Pamela Geller the “odd couple of the global ‘anti-Islam’ movement“:
“They are provocateurs trading in explosive, often racist anti-Muslim rhetoric, and they are now on the front lines of a roiling debate about whether Western notions of free speech ought to take into consideration Muslim sensitivities about images of the Prophet Mohammed.”
“Ought to take into consideration Muslim sensitivities”? Really?
On the popular habit of using the Southern Poverty Law Center as a ‘credible’ source:
“She is also the president of the American Freedom Defense Initiative, a group that the Southern Poverty Law Center lists as a ‘hate group.'”
Note: The Southern Poverty Law Center thinks any organization that doesn’t conform to contemporary left-wing orthodoxy is a “hate group”. The Southern Poverty Law Center would label a ham sandwich and a bag of potato chips a “hate group”. Is Foreign Policy magazine a “hate group”? (Sure, why not?)
Geller has the good sense to ignore the
smear merchants “journalists” at Foreign Policy, and accurately reveals the magazine’s ideological bias, calling it a “citadel of leftist power and influence”.
“Geller did not answer a list of questions emailed to her by Foreign Policy. In the past she has referred to FP as a ‘citadel of leftist power and influence’.”
Former State Department counterterrorism director Daniel Benjamin weighs in:
“If you wanted to conduct a science experiment to show you could elicit jihadist violence, this was the perfect setup. Extremists have shown they are eager to avenge any perception of blasphemy.”
And western apologists continue to appease them, and endeavor to not offend them.
Why does Foreign Policy have this peculiar, almost erotic obsession with Geert Wilders hair?
“Unmistakable with his mane of silver hair, Wilders has tried to cloak his intense dislike of Islam behind a veil of advocating on behalf of liberal values.”
The authors promote a fiction that there’s a “line” between free speech and “hate speech” that must be observed, and “balanced”. It’s a false distinction, often used by those who misunderstand (or want to “raise questions” about) the first amendment. The constitutional guarantee of freedom of speech recognizes no such distinction. In fact, the only kind of speech that the the first amendment was designed to protect is offensive, hateful speech. What protection does inoffensive speech need?
When somebody tells you there’s a “line” that “must be balanced”, they are lying. They are advocating censorship.
The ‘Social Value’ Argument
“Benjamin, the former State Department official who is now a scholar at Dartmouth, said the United States must now balance the right to free speech with speech like the kind used by Wilders and Geller in their advocacy against Islam.”
If Daniel Benjamin is advocating self-restraint, then this is a legitimate expression of concern, aimed preserving nonviolence in a pluralistic society. If, however, he is advocating limiting free expression in order to achieve that goal, he should drop the ambiguous diplomatic double-talk and say what he means. Read the rest of this entry »
“Increasingly, we’re abridging our freedoms so as not to offend savages. The very idea that if something offends me, or I’m insulted by something I’ll kill you and somehow this is okay with members of the elite media, and academia, is outrageous.”
Why is Pamela Geller so obsessed with Islam? It’s all she can think and talk about. Is it the result of some sort of trauma?
— Hala Gorani (@HalaGorani) May 4, 2015
Mediaite: Hours after a shooting at a Muhammed cartoon event Garland, Texas that left three dead, including the gunmen, the event’s sponsor and American Freedom Defense Initiative president Pamela Geller battled CNN’s Alisyn Camerota over whether the incendiary event had provoked violence.
“And then we have to get on these news shows, and somehow we are, those that are targeted, those that were going to be slaughtered, are the ones who get attacked speaks to how morally inverted this conversation is.”
“Increasingly, we’re abridging our freedoms so as not to offend savages,” Geller alleged. “The very idea that if something offends me, or I’m insulted by something I’ll kill you and somehow this is okay with members of the elite media, and academia, is outrageous.”
— Ericka Andersen (@ErickaAndersen) May 4, 2015
Camerota read from the keynote speech given at the event disparaging Islam. Geller has made a career of warning of the “Islamization” of America; the Southern Poverty Law Center lists her as an extremist.
“He’s entitled to his opinion, end of story. So what? So he said that. And frankly, what he said was true…The fact is that we need to have this discussion, there’s a problem in Islam.”
The conversation devolved into whether Geller had ever called Muslims “savages,” which she said she had done once in her life. She argued she criticized only Muslims who kill over their beliefs. “I am anti-jihad, I am anti-Sharia,” Geller said. “You, by spaying I paint with a broad brush, are saying all Muslims support jihad. Alisyn you sound very Islamaphobic.” It was that type of segment. Read the rest of this entry »
Foreign Policy’s David Francis Resurrects Discredited WH Spin: Ambassador Stevens Death ‘Connected to Low-Budget Film’Posted: May 4, 2015
Americans Have ‘Stirred the Pot’, Says David Francis
Five months after an attack at the office of satirical newspaper Charlie Hebdo in Paris, and four months after a shooting at a free speech event in Copenhagen, two gunmen were shot and killed outside of a cartoon exhibit and contest near Dallas late Sunday evening. While the motive for the attack is unclear, one of the event’s keynote speakers, Dutch parliament member Geert Wilders, has been denounced by Islamist groups for his criticisms of the Muslim presence in Europe, and its organizer, Pamela Geller, is a long time critic of Islam.
“In 2012, protesters stormed the U.S. embassy in Cairo after Mark Basseley Youssef, a U.S. resident, released the anti-Muslim film ‘Innocence of Muslims’. Violence in Benghazi that left U.S. Ambassador J. Christopher Stevens dead was also connected to the low-budget film.”
Two Democratic lawmakers recently asked the White House to ban Wilders from entering the United States.
It remains unclear whether the shooting is connected to broader extremist Islamic movements like the Islamic State or al Qaeda. Some Twitter posts by users associated with the group denounced the event in advance. Citing FBI sources, ABC news reported one of the gunmen is Elton Simpson, a target of previous terrorism related investigations. He had previously
Tweeted using the hashtag #texasattacks.
“Its organizer, Geller, is the president of the American Freedom Defense Initiative, a group the Southern Poverty Law Center lists as a ‘hate group’.”
Note: The Southern Poverty Law Center’s standards are so ludicrous they’d list a box of cereal a “hate group”.
The identity of the second gunman is still unknown. Read the rest of this entry »
OH YES THEY DID: Liberals Side with Islamic Gunmen in #Garland Terror Attack, Blame Organizers, Wish Geller Had Been ShotPosted: May 4, 2015
“A number of online liberals appeared to side with the gunmen and were upset that Pamela Geller, one of the event organizers, was not shot. A number of others simply blamed Geller for the shooting, while others blamed the free speech event.”
On Sunday, two gunmen attempted what appears to be a Charlie Hebdo-style terror attack on a free speech event in Garland, Texas, that included a “Draw Mohammed” cartoon contest. Both gunmen were killed by Garland police officers and one officer was wounded. But, Twitchy said Sunday night, a number of online liberals appeared to side with the gunmen and were upset that Pamela Geller, one of the event organizers, was not shot. A number of others simply blamed Geller for the shooting, while others blamed the free speech event.
“Two people at racist hate event killed, one unfortunately not Pam Geller,” one person said. A search of Twitter revealed many others who blamed Geller.
“What’s worse mocking Islam or killing people?”
“Nothing like presence of Geert Wilders & Pam Geller to bring out crazies on other side,” one person said. “Oh, and by the way, it is not the fault of ‘Jews’ but one Jew, Pam Geller,whose only job is to create problems,” another person added. Wilders, Twitchy added, is a Dutch politician Democrats wanted to keep out of the country. CAIR also joined in the effort, demanding he be denied a visa.
— CNN Breaking News (@cnnbrk) May 4, 2015
“Let’s be real, the event in #Garland featured hatemongers like Geert Wilders & Pam Geller, this wasn’t an art event, it was a hate event,” another person said on Twitter, apparently blaming the intended targets for the attempted terror attack. Others appeared to openly side with the gunmen who, as we reported Sunday, received praise from ISIS.
“Racist Pam Geller is responsible for the deaths in Garland Texas,” one Twitter user said. “Her Klan meeting was meant to draw violence. She is responsible.”
“Officials believe Simpson is the person who sent out several Twitter messages prior to the attack on Sunday, in the last one using the hashtag #TexasAttack about half an hour before the shooting.”
“I live in Garland,Tx where shooting occurred,” another Twitter user said. “I’m sorry Garland ever let Pam Geller put this event on–only 200 tickets sold. Geller=idiot.”
“Two of the key speakers/organizers of the ‘Draw Mohammed’ event in Texas are Pam Geller and Geert Wilders,” tweeted Glenn Greenwald. The tweet attracted a great deal of criticism. Read the rest of this entry »
[VIDEO] Freedom of Speech Under Fire in America: Pamela Geller Explains the Purpose Behind Texas Art Exhibit in #Garland, TexasPosted: May 4, 2015
GARLAND, Texas – Bob Price writes: Pamela Geller was conducting an exclusive interview with Breitbart Texas about the Mohammad Art Exhibit and Contest just as gunfire erupted outside the event. Her security detail came in and interrupted the interview and quickly extricated her from the scene.
“This was a room of freedom lovers, brave Americans, who knew it was risky,” Geller said seconds before security grabbed her and took her away to safety. “They took a stand for freedom because they know its scary out there.”
“We’ve got to go,” a police officer told Geller. “Come on, we’ve got to stop this right now. Come on, let’s go.” Read the rest of this entry »
For Breitbart.com, Pamela Geller writes: Yale University’s Yale Global Online has published a piece by Ooi Kee Beng, deputy director of the Institute of Southeast Asian Studies, asserting that “Islam has no centralized controls; any power-hungry despot can use religion as an excuse.” But it’s no excuse; it’s a theological imperative.
The article complains about “the excessive use of ‘Islam’ in denoting as many aspects of daily life as possible. With Islam being a holistic religion, modern leaders of Muslim-majority societies tend to encourage the description of as many aspects as possible of modern life under a restrictive Islamic paradigm. Regrettably, this tendency mirrors and sustains the simultaneous propensity of non-Muslims to regard Muslim societies as being steered by a rigid religious ideology.”
Ooi suggests that some of the major horrors committed in Islam’s name and justified by its texts and teachings have nothing to do with Islam: “The kidnapping of the school girls in Nigeria is but the latest extreme event involving a claim to know ‘Islam.’ The 2001 attacks on the World Trade Center in New York and the Pentagon, major bombings in European cities, the bombings in Indonesia, the attack on the Boston Marathon, and America’s war on terror have all made ‘Islam’ a modern newsmaker that is second to none.”
Ah, yes. It’s all because modern Muslim leaders ascribe everything to Islam that we see violence and atrocities committed in the name of Islam every day, you see. Yet we do not see power-hungry despots or majors in the U.S. Army at Fort Hood or doctors in Glasgow or students at the Boston Marathon invoking Jesus or HaShem in order to kill, maim, and control. They only invoke Islam, and they only quote the Quran with its promise of Paradise to those who “kill and are killed” for Allah (9:111) and mandate to wage war against and subjugate Jews and Christians under the rule of Islamic law (9:29). Read the rest of this entry »