...a minor crackpot has, thanks to the miracle of the Internet and far-less-wondrous effect of cable television news*, managed to have a global impact -- and a potentially lethal one at that. ... Jones's kookiness is not about space aliens or the UN's black helicopters -- or even the evils of Jews or Christians. If it were, we would have never heard of him. Instead, it is Islam he is maligning -- and that explains both the reaction of the media and of statesmen from Obama on down.Jackson Deihl of the WaPo gets a lot of things correct, and especially his closing note that most of the blame for "rage" in the Islamic world belongs to those "Muslim leaders who seize on any pretext to foment anti-Western violence." As I said elsewhere, those who do not wish to be mollified won't be; and Imams must thank Allah 5 times a day for idiots like Terry Jones.He makes their job much easier.
That said, Deihl still misses a couple of major points that tie in with his correct assertion that the press would not have paid any attention to this except that it dealt with Islam. The lesser point is that the left (to which the press generally belongs) is really not afraid of Christians and Jews. And there's good reason for that. Let's say that there are 200 million Christians in the US**. What percent of them taking gun in hand would it take to shut down the nation's 750 abortion clinics? The fact that one abortion doctor in the last 5 years has been murdered is proof that all the noise about "Christian Taliban" and the like is just leftist noise. They can ignore - or commit - offenses against Christians because they know Christians are not going to kill them over, for example, crucifixes in urine. But the left does not know how to deal with Islam - which really does take gun in hand at such provocations - so they defer to it as much as possible.
But the second point is more important: the uber-smart left in America thinks of Americans generally as idiot racist trash. You heard about the rising tide of Islamophobia**** in America - it was in all the papers - yet you might have wondered why you missed it in your own neighborhood. Well, you didn't see it because it's crap. It doesn't exist. If there was anything remotely resembling a tide of Islamophobia, the 78.4% Christian population would wipe out the 0.6% Muslim population in about 5 minutes. That some people are upset about a mosque at Ground Zero is not a tide. That a cabbie got stabbed in New York City is not a tide. It's barely a ripple in a shot glass. It's not news. But in order to make it news, the press made news of the first piece of idiot trash they could find, a pastor of a church of 4 dozen people, as an "example" of this rising tide.
The Press created Terry Jones. They created Terry Jones to illustrate racist trash America, and they convinced a Muslim population willing to believe it (or at least whose leadership is willing to use it) that there is a rising tide of hate here aimed at them. When a similar tide rolls over Christians elsewhere, or over American soldiers elsewhere, Terry Jones will have blood on his hands. But the press will be crimson up to their shoulders.
* Unlike the ultra-responsible Washington Post, which only has 45 articles mentioning him on their website.
** It's 78.4% of adult Americans***, to be exact.
*** plus Obama.
**** Though this article on CNN.com is to be commended as the exception that proves the rule.