So Sunday, a few hundred protesters showed up in Times Square to denounce the upcoming House hearings on Radicalization in the American Muslim community.
The crowd, well-organized with professional signs that read " 'Today I am a Muslim Too," targeted their ire at Peter King, the chairman of the House Committee on Homeland Security.
The protest was forgettable in its predictability; but the media coverage was even worse in its report-by-numbers portrait of the "event."
First, it was mandatory to toss the term Islamophobic at anyone in favor of the hearings. Also, you must employ the word "witchhunt" when possible.
And because he announced the hearings, King is now being compared to Senator Joe McCarthy, the bellicose anti-communist censured by the Senate in the '50's.
Sure, Joe's manic zeal was toxic, but it didn't kill tens of millions of people. I mean, if you think McCarthyism was worse than Communism, you're a loon. But you're also a loon if you think Peter King's concern over Islamic radicalism is somehow worse than Islamic radicalism itself.
The fact is, they're labeling King the "new McCarthy" to keep him from doing his job.
Which is to make us safe.
As for the signs "Today I am a Muslim Too," I'm not sure that's as risky as saying the reverse.
Last Friday, a funeral was held for the Pakistan's Christian cabinet minister, Shahbaz Bhatti. He was assassinated by radicals for his opposition to the country's blasphemy laws. On the same day, National Review notes, accusations of blasphemy led to many more murders. And let's not forget Muhammad Imran, shot dead at a cafe for making an "insulting" remark about Islam.
So, about that "witchhunt."
Right word, wrong place.
And if you disagree with me, you're a racist, homophobic Islamophobe.
Imogen Lloyd Webber