NPR has really done it now: They actually fired an employee, Juan Williams, for making insensitive comments about Muslims on television. Is this the American way? Former GOP presidential candidate Mike Huckabee, for one, wants NPR stripped of public funding.
We don't know if Juan Williams' comments on the O'Reilly Factor about being scared when he sees Muslims on airplanes — stupid as they were — objectively merit firing from NPR. But if Rick Sanchez gets fired for vaguely surmising that Jews run the media, and Octavia Nasr gets fired for tweeting something nice about a Hezbollah leader who died, then Juan Williams, by those terribly oversensitive media standards, should be canned.
But since NPR has failed to abide by the comfortable double-standard that allows anyone to make insensitive comments about Muslims without fear of reprieve, this is a full-blown scandal! Here's Mike Huckabee — one of Williams' colleagues at Fox News, where he wasn't fired — sounding the call (via CNN):
"NPR has discredited itself as a forum for free speech and a protection of the First Amendment rights of all and has solidified itself as the purveyor of politically correct pabulum and protector of views that lean left," Huckabee said in a statement provided to CNN.
Williams told Fox News host Bill O'Reilly on Monday that he gets "worried" and "nervous" on flights when he sees people wearing "Muslim garb." NPR terminated Williams' contract on Wednesday evening.
Huckabee said he "will no longer accept interview requests from NPR as long as they are going to practice a form of censorship, and since NPR is funded with public funds, it is a form of censorship."
"It is time for the taxpayers to start making cuts to federal spending, and I encourage the new Congress to start with NPR," he said.
"Purveyor of politically correct pabulum and protector of views that lean left." Fox News needs to fire Huckabee for insensitive use of alliteration.
Update: Fox News has given Williams an expanded role and new $2 million contract.
[Image via AP]