From yesterday's news, it was possible to assume that the police saw a beheaded body, and immediately assumed that a Muslim did it. With Muzzammil Hassan's confession, it's going to be harder for charges of profiling and islamphobia to get traction. It's even possible that the 'victim' tactic won't be used at all.
Aasiya Hassan, Muzzammil Hassan, Bridge TV: Pathos AplentyNews from Orchard Park and Bridges TV is dripping with emotion:
- Aasiya's restraining order separates her from Muzzammil Hassan
- Muzzammil Hassan separates Assiya's body and head
- Bridges TV must now clean up its
As CNN put it, Muzzammil Hassan "...hoped the network would balance negative portrayals of Muslims following the attacks of September 11, 2001...."
Bridges and Balance: Good Idea; Execution Not so HotI can sympathize with Mr. Hassan's wish to counter negative portrayals. I've watched American culture's attitude toward my religious beliefs grow from the stereotypes of Nast and Monk and dire end times warnings, to technically-accurate accusations of intolerance. I'm Catholic, and not all Americans accept Crosby's "The Bells of St. Mary's" version of the church.
But, if I were trying to provide "balance" in a television network, I'm pretty sure I wouldn't have something like Bridges TV's 'news' lineup. It includes Democracy Now!'s own Amy Goodman, "the NY Times best selling author of Exception to the Rulers and Static, hosts a daily current affairs show. Tune in for a unique global view & guests." (Bridges TV's Daily News & Current Affairs page)
Amy Goodman is "radio's voice of the disenfranchised left" - according to the Los Angeles Times, and Democracy Now!
Goodman has every right to be on radio, television, as well as get published in books, magazines, and online.
But I'm not entirely convinced that she's a particularly good choice for presenting a balanced view of Muslims in America. I could be wrong, of course.
CNN, The New York Times, and "All the News That's Fit to Print"CNN's delay in getting their story out isn't all that unusual. Although the network has been known to post articles within hours of an even, their online news is often 24 hours or more behind other news. This isn't necessarily a bad thing: CNN may have a policy of researching and verifying facts, before publishing.
If The New York Times has an article about the little matter of a beheaded woman cluttering up an Islamic Network's premises, a fairly thorough search this morning didn't reveal it.
I wrote, yesterday, about the difficulties that a prominent Muslim's beheading of his wife presents to a paper with The New York Times' sensibilities.
I don't know why The New York Times isn't paying attention to a prominent member of a Muslim community beheading his wife, and leaving at least part of the remains in his Islamic network's facilities.
I suspect that it's because the Gray Lady's editors haven't yet decided how to handle the unpleasantness, without mentioning Islam, Muslims, beheading, or any other embarrassing detail that might seem intolerant. But, that's just a suspicion.
Besides, it's a free country. If The New York Times decides to ignore Muzzammil Hassan's distinctive method of dealing with his wife, they've got every right to do so. If the Gray Lady's editors feel that a decapitated body on an American Islamic network's property isn't "news that's fit to print" - that's their call.
The New York Times doesn't ignore all news from the little places. Just last year, a story datelined Orchard Park discussed the troubling matter of a sports team playing eight games in Toronto.
- "Muslim Founder of Islamic Network Beheads Wife: But it's No Big Deal?"
(February 16, 2009)
- "The New York Times, Insularity, and Assumptions"
(October 21, 2008)
- "CAIR, Yaser Said, and the FBI: Don't Say 'Honor Killing' "
(October 14, 2008)
- "Honor Killing is Against Islam, Islamic Party Members Say"
(September 7, 2008)
- "Pro-Islamic Ads Coming to New York City Subways: There's a Real Danger Here, of Becoming Informed"
(July 21, 2008)
- "US Muslim TV boss 'beheaded wife' "
BBC (February 17, 2009)
- "Woman listens to sister's death in US "
Independent Online, South Africa (February 17, 2009)
- "Another vilification of Islam"
Toronto Star (February 17, 2009)
- " 'Monster decapitated my sister' "
News24, South Africa (February 17, 2009)
- "Founder of Islamic TV station accused of beheading wife"
CNN (February 16, 2009)
- "Buffalo Area Wonders: Could It Lose the Bills?"
The New York Times (March 9, 2008)