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Open Mouth, Insert Foot

There's a fun little scuffle going on at George Washington University. Conservatives on campus are planning an "Islamo-Fascism Awareness Week" soon, and -- naturally -- this has a lot of people in a tizzy. (It's the equivalent of heresy to comment on the remarkable correlation between terrorists, dictatorships, and Islam. The race might not always go to the swift, the battle to the strong, and not all terrorists are Muslims, but that's the way to bet.)

First up, the regular suspects all denounced the event. Then, a bunch of posters showed up around campus. They announced the event, proclaiming "HATE MUSLIMS? SO DO WE!" and featured a bunch of anti-Muslim sentiments.

This drove the regular suspects into absolute hysteria. Howls of outrage shook the campus, and several college officials talked openly of expelling the students responsible for it. The Young America's Foundation -- the sponsors of the Week -- found themselves under heavy attack.

Then a rather inconvenient truth emerged: the posters were not the work of the YAF, or any of their supporters, but a "satire" cooked up by seven students who are staunch opponents of the YAF and their event.

So now the school is on the horns of a serious dilemma. They reacted very strongly (I would say overreacted) to the flyers, issuing all sorts of dire threats, when they thought that the conservatives were responsible for them. Now that the true perpetrators have been unmasked and the conservatives utterly exonerated (if not revealed as the true victims of the whole scam), will the school carry out the promised discipline? Will they let the "satirists" off with a slap on the wrist? Or will they just hope the whole thing just blows over?

This could be fun to watch.


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Comments (26)

Great behavior by these int... (Below threshold)
Joe:

Great behavior by these intolerant muslims.

Don'tch just love them.

They'll drag their feet hop... (Below threshold)

They'll drag their feet hoping it blows over. Its stupid for these people to give harsh sentences to conservative groups and look the other way to liberal one.

It's almost like G... (Below threshold)
macofromoc:

It's almost like GWU adminihacks are guided by predjudice or something. Maybe they need more dialogue and learn to embrace their differences with others.


It is my understanding that... (Below threshold)
DocRoch:

It is my understanding that, should GWU not take the same actions against the actual perps (as was threatened against YAF), then the YAF folks have a prima facie case of defamation against GWU, besides a few other possible civil rights and common law claims.

"Interesting" might be an understatement.

Since I live in the area - ... (Below threshold)

Since I live in the area - it IS DELIGHTFUL to watch!

I predict that GWU will att... (Below threshold)
jim2:

I predict that GWU will attempt to employ the TNR Beauchamp Defense.

I hear Mike Nifong's availa... (Below threshold)
ODA315:

I hear Mike Nifong's available.

The issue isn't which group... (Below threshold)
nehemiah:

The issue isn't which group did this. Doesn't matter. There's nothing wrong with whichever group is expressing their opinion.

If Ahmadinejad is allowed to call Israel "Little Satan" and the U.S. "the Great Satan" at an American university, what's wrong with these comments?

I caught this elsewhere (I ... (Below threshold)
jpm100:

I caught this elsewhere (I forget at the moment).

Even after the real story came to light, it seems that the students that were the victims of the inpersonation are on the hook for publicly denoucing any anti-Muslim acts and to account for how this will never happen again.

You are so dull. Now that ... (Below threshold)
kim:

You are so dull. Now that we see it is a joke, we can laugh at it. Weren't they funny? Too much.
======================================

I mean to say, cutting edge... (Below threshold)
kim:

I mean to say, cutting edge performance art parody. There it is. What?
====================================

The poster itself is indeed... (Below threshold)
jim2:

The poster itself is indeed hyperbolic enough to well support a satire defense (c'mon, "laser eyes"?!).

I see the problems as three separate ones.

First, the poster purported to be by YAF supporting their event, rather than making up a fake organization that claimed to agree with YAF.

Second, folk were so eager to claim insult and injury by conservatives, that they dismissed the hyperbole.

Third, the GWO administration ignored the obvious and too quickly reacted, perhaps because the perceived situation so well fit their meta-narrative. I could almost hear GWU President Knapp channeling Duke President Brodhead, "Whatever they did was bad enough."

Unless the profile of the G... (Below threshold)

Unless the profile of the GW student body has changed considerably in the past decade, there is a significant Arab student pop at that school (many the family of dips from those countries).

But surely the Conservative... (Below threshold)

But surely the Conservatives provoked their rightfully indignant opponents. Oust the YAF!

/ sarcasm off

Third, the GWO administr... (Below threshold)
drjohn:

Third, the GWO administration ignored the obvious and too quickly reacted, perhaps because the perceived situation so well fit their meta-narrative. I could almost hear GWU President Knapp channeling Duke President Brodhead, "Whatever they did was bad enough."

This was my first reaction as well.

Hello, Duke?

Nice the perps are hiding b... (Below threshold)

Nice the perps are hiding behind the "satire" defense pefected by Stewart, Colbert, Maher and Franken.

I suspect that this will re... (Below threshold)
Mike:

I suspect that this will receive the typical "hate crimes" treatment: throw the book when the perpetrators are the stereotyped 'aggressors,' look the other way when the perps are the stereotyped 'victims.'

My take? GWU will dissemble... (Below threshold)
JoeC:

My take? GWU will dissemble and stall until most get bored, and the headlines and memory fade. They'll have a quiet talk in a back room with the perps.... and life will go on. The collective memory that (remains)/(will remain) is the YAF put up some posters that got the university in a tizzy. Sad.

Just the zillionth reason I... (Below threshold)
Jo:

Just the zillionth reason I could never be a lib and could never vote Democrat.

Oh, and the noose found at Columbia? I wouldn't doubt it wasn't put there by someone on the left.

What will happen here is wh... (Below threshold)
OLDPUPPYMAX:

What will happen here is what always happens when the hypocrisy and shamelessness of the left are exposed--nothing. No news, no reports, nothing. It will be carefully buried and rather than pointing it out to the American people, our gutless republican senators will crawl back under their desks. It's a god damn shame.

What will happen to the rea... (Below threshold)
Bill M:

What will happen to the real perps...just wait for it...


{crickets chirping....}

The college officials are i... (Below threshold)
LaMedusa:

The college officials are incredibly embarrassed and wish the whole thing would just go away. Well, unless they can contrive some extravagant tale that the perpetrators were provoked into pulling such a stunt.

It will be a long time befo... (Below threshold)
Joe:

It will be a long time before libs figure out that islam and the west cannot cohabitate. By then, it will be too late.

islam is not a religion, but a political idiology that is not compatible with democracy and all the queer libs in San Francisco. The Folsom Street Fair would never happen in Iran, well, maybe just once, till the muslims saw the blow jobs, the fisting, the dildo demos in the ass, and the naked queers jacking off in the street. Then they would round them all up, and throw them off a cliff. The surviving queers would then be stoned.

Ah yes, islam, the tolerant ideology, so compatible with Folsom Street.

Liberals are the real ones ... (Below threshold)
Spurwing Plover:

Liberals are the real ones who are intoerent just look at those university thugs trying to stop free speech of those who oppose illegal imagration SCREW LIBERAL FREAKS

I purposefully refrained fr... (Below threshold)

I purposefully refrained from reading the comment section in this post to see if:

A) the usual suspects would pop in with something to derail the subject of the post

B) would completely ignore it

C) or my biggest hope that maybe one, just one, of the usual suspects would agree that the kneejerk reaction by the school admin and Ms. Behling was wrong.

I guessed A. Curses! Foiled again!

It appears that they haven't found a way to spin this one and they aren't likely to as here is a part of the correspondence sent to YAF when the posters went up:

[Bridgette] Behling, [director of student involvement at GWU] wrote on Monday [to YAF]: "Due to the inflammatory nature of today's events, as a good faith effort on behalf of YAF, it is important that YAF draft a statement which states that you will not allow hate speech to be a part of any of YAF's events, literature, written or verbal communication," including Islamo-Fascism Awareness Week, which will be held Oct. 22-26.
...
"This statement should also include your plan for preventing these things from happening, as well as the consequences for these things happening," she added. "It is important that we have this document should any further incidents occur as we move forward."

Since then, Ms. Behling cannot be reached for comment.

What will happen here is one of two things. There will be a contingent on the left that will be busy as little beavers dredging up what ever they can about individual members of the YAF to engage in exactly the same thing they just castigated the right for over the issue with the Frost family - the politics of personal destruction - or they'll take TNR's cue and wait out the storm hoping it will fade. Either way, it's a lose/lose.

The fact is that serious damage has been done here by this idiot group's attempt at "parody" or "satire" or what ever they're trying to call it. It's made headlines in IslamOnline, Pakistani news sources and in India. www.muslimnews.co.uk printed a short blurb saying nothing other than it wasn't known who put the posters up, with nary a follow up yet.

Expelling these students would be too kind. At the very least, coupled with expulsion, they should be made to publicly and openly accept responsibility exhonerating the YAF. It's been days now and the college's "investigation" has given us nothing. They have the posters and they have the perps. What more investigation needs to occur?

Knapp, the college's President stated:

"There is no place for expressions of hatred on our campus. We do not condone, and we will not tolerate the dissemination of fliers or other documents that vilify any religious, ethnic or racial group."

I think he should expand that statement to include other groups recognized by the university and that right after they have their solidarity gathering with Muslims they should be made to break bread with the other victims of this farce, the YAF, and apologize to their faces - Ms. Behling and the seven signers of the letter admitting to distributing the posters should be included.

He was very careful in his statement. Now all he has to do is live up to it.

Awesome... Freedom of Speec... (Below threshold)

Awesome... Freedom of Speech not protected at a University named for a Framer of the Constitution. I suspect a bunch of Lawyers may make the diplomatic kids tuitions even higher in the future.




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