Thursday, October 12, 2006

Anne Taylor Fleming is a Bigot

Ann Taylor Fleming’s unbelievably racist, religionist, prejudiced and inhumane “essays” on that farcical excuse for a news program “Jim Lehrer’s Newshour” (PBS network in the U.S.) took a radically inappropriate turn toward proselytizing, bigotry and hate-mongering on Friday 6 October. And, since no one else is speaking up, the Saccharinist will.

In a profusely inaccurate account of the Amish school deaths in Pennsylvania, she overtly compared the forgiveness, peacefulness and goodness of Christianity with Islam – never once, as always in American “journalism” mentioning the violence, aggression and hate of Christianity or Judaism. In fact, her so-called “essay” was more a speech on the greatness of Jesus Christ than on the forgiveness of the Amish and it reeled with her own hatred and anger toward non-Christians. She even quoted the famous Jewish philosopher Hannah Arendt (a philosopher who, according to her Wikipedia article was actually quite disliked by her fellow Jews, something Fleming no doubt was pleased to exploit) to make her fist-pounding point about how great Jesus was. Shame Fleming herself has fallen so short of the positive and enduring qualities of her apparent idol.

Her “essay" (click here for an audio version that unfortunately doesn't show her use of photo-collage to implicate billions of people in her mass conspiracy that Muslims, Black people and non-Americans in general are evil-doing, hateful people bent on destroying the world) – more accurately, her 30 years of service to American “journalism” which bought her a regular 2 minute time slot and carte blanche to broadcast her prejudice – was focused on how the Amish have announced that they forgive the nutcase who shot and killed those 5 girls in an Amish school house last week. But like a good bigot, she herself fell far short of demonstrating the positive qualities she somehow managed to identify in others, which only leads us to believe that she doesn’t give a toss about how forgiving the Amish are but is merely interested in exploiting them as an example of how great Americans and Christians are.

Flashing across the screen to accompany her pathetic and criminal rant (hate mongering is a crime in the United States) were images of violence committed by Muslims and Black Africans, contrasted with renaissance paintings of Jesus and all-American churchgoers. Fleming spits that "the world [has] gone mad with revenge killings and sectarian violence" and that "chunks of the globe [are] self-immolating with hatred" as her "essay" streams pictures of the victims of American imperialism: Muslims and Blacks everywhere. They are the "rageful face" of religion, she says, contrasting people whose lives, land, and livelihood have been in tatters for generations, centuries, even, because of American political and military aggression against them.

Fleming shamelessly and, in her bigoted condescendance, racistly refers to these people as "tribes and sects in a froth of revenge from Darfur to Baghdad" -- reminiscent of the old (and by old, I mean a tradition that only officially ended in the 1960's, though we all know that the problem of racism has by no means been solved in the U.S. yet) American slavery lingo of referring to the Africans as "tribal beasts" and "uncivilized hordes." Funny she should mention two of the current hotbeds of America's own "froth of revenge" and sheer lack of civility and humanity.

Oh, but the Amish, THEY on the other hand are the "tender face of religion," according to Die Flemmeisterin. Why? Because "they had Jesus in them." Too bad you don't, Frau Fleming.

The ignorance and blatant falsehood of these implications is stunning in its own right and in that it was broadcast on a major national network: that Muslims, Black people and, well, anyone who isn’t a White Christian, are violent, angry, irrational people. The only violent, angry and irrational person in Ann’s “essay” was herself and if there were any decent slander laws in the United States, she and a whole host of other hate mongerers who find their way onto the mainstream news would be prosecuted for the crimes they have committed.

As this blog has pointed out in the past, Newshour is hardly “news” and is in fact replete with prejudice, bigotry and shabby, unprofessional, biased journalism – a beacon of American journalism at its best, to be sure. But Newshour’s pathetic shortcomings go beyond its prejudices and journalistic failures. According to the media watchdog Fairness and Accuracy in Media, it turns out the show is extremely biased toward old men and Republicans in its use of "sources" for "news" reports. Frau Fleming, no doubt, has a huge fan base in the old, White Republican guard.

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