So the newspaper published a groveling front-page apology for being too respectful of Muslims. “We sincerely apologize,” wrote the editor and publisher, Richard Connor, and he added: “we erred by at least not offering balance to the story and its prominent position on the front page.” As a blog by James Poniewozik of Time paraphrased it: “Sorry for Portraying Muslims as Human.”
I called Mr. Connor, and he seems like a nice guy. Surely his front page isn’t reserved for stories about Bad Muslims, with articles about Good Muslims going inside. Must coverage of law-abiding Muslims be “balanced” by a discussion of Muslim terrorists?
Ah, balance—who can be against that? But should reporting of Pope Benedict’s trip to Britain be “balanced” by a discussion of Catholic terrorists in Ireland?
Muslims bad, Christians good?
That’s true, but Japanese did attack Pearl Harbor and in the end killed far more Americans than Al Qaeda ever did. Consumed by our fears, we lumped together anyone of Japanese ancestry and rounded them up in internment camps. The threat was real, but so were the hysteria and the overreaction.
Maybe Kristof meant that Catholics and Jews didn't kill thousands, they killed millions? That Carla's claim was true because the number was low by a factor of a thousand? Could be, but I doubt it.
My Facebook friends had some comments on Carla's claim:
Catholics have killed more people than cancer.
Catholicism in the late 1700s and early 1850s turned an estimated California Indian population of 300,000 to approximately 53,000. Durrrr.
Jews bad too?
One person asked, "Did the Jews kill Indians?" I don't know, but I can speculate.
Based on my stereotypical knowledge of history, I'd guess Jews were underrepresented among Western settlers but overrepresented among Eastern businessmen and financiers. They probably didn't kill many Indians directly. But by financing the railroads, the mining expeditions, the stockyards, etc., they contributed to the killing of Indians and the destruction of their way of life.
That was true of most Americans, of course, not just Jews. The only ones I'd give a pass to are those who spoke up and protested America's genocidal policies. Who voted against politicians who ran on an anti-Indian platform. Average Americans couldn't have done much to stop the Manifest Destiny juggernaut, but they could've tried.
For more on the subject, see:
Culture war over who's American
My visit to a mosque
Obama smeared as Luo tribesman
Bigots protest brown-skins on 9/11
Conservative bigotry against Islam
Muslim "tribes" = Indian tribes?!
Below: We're Americans! We're civilized! We don't fly airplanes into buildings like those cowardly Muslims!