Sean Hannity hosted right-wing extremist and Islamophobe Pamela Geller tonight in a deliberate effort to get her to do her hate-mongering thing. And when she did, Hannity at least tacitly approved.
The pretext for the discussion was Yale’s decision to host Sheik Rashid Ganushi “to headline an event” for the law school that afternoon. Hannity announced that Ganushi “was a member of the group that endorsed the murder of U.S. troops. He was banned from the U.S. for supporting Hamas. …So is this the person that schools, Ivy League schools, should be allowing to speak in front of our children?”
In the first place, law school students are hardly children. Secondly, remember how much Fox believed in freedom of speech when anti-Islam activist Ayaan Hirsi Ali was invited to Yale? Third, the vague description that Ganushi “was a member of the group that endorsed the murder of U.S. troops” is hardly enough information to consider him an enemy who should be forever banned from the U.S. and to adjudge Yale almost an anti-American for daring to host him. Unless you're a Hannity fan, it seems.
However, whatever Ganushi's malice, he is hardly some Osama Bin Laden. In 2012, he was listed as one of Time’s 100 Most Influential People. Time said about him:
The Tunisian scholar-politician Rached Ghannouchi, once the enfant terrible of political Islam, is now widely hailed as its voice of sanity. When Ghannouchi, 70, returned home from a decades-long European exile last year after the Arab Spring toppled Tunisia’s dictator… Ghannouchi offered a vision of a moderate, modern and inclusive political movement that was nonetheless rooted in the Muslim faith. When his Ennahda party won a resounding election victory, Ghannouchi endorsed a secular election partner as President. He took no office for himself.
He has also condemned the ISIS caliphate.
But tough-talking Hannity announced, “This guy shouldn’t be in our country. We banned him once. How he ever got in here just shows how stupid we can be sometimes.”
Muslim Mike Ghouse was a hapless guest. He argued on behalf of freedom of speech but never confronted Hannity’s hypocrisy nor the outrageousness of hosting someone like Geller as a credible commentator. Nor did Ghouse confront Hannity’s bullyboy, blowhard behavior – reminiscent of his browbeating of a Palestinian-American guest in July.
Of course, Hannity behaved completely differently with Geller. While Hannity tried to suggest moderate Ghouse is some kind of extremist supporter, Geller is a real extremist - whom Hannity supports.
Some Geller tidbits:
- Obama, she wrote, has been “unmosqued” as the “jihadist in the White House” for whom “Jew-hatred is policy.” (Right Wing Watch, August 2014)
- Geller accused Obama of using the term “ISIL” because he wants “to distract, dissemble, deceive and disarm the American people” by using a confusing term like “the Levant.” … Never mind the fact that Geller actually uses “ISIL” on her anti-Muslim blog and told her own readers that “the correct name is ISIL (Islamic State in Iraq and the Levant).” (Right Wing Watch, September 2014)
- Geller is a birther who believes that President Obama is the love child of Malcolm X. (Southern Poverty Law Center)
- Geller has previously said on Hannity that Obama is “consistently on the side of jihadic, Islamic supremacist regimes.” (July, 2013)
Geller has also been involved with some very shady characters. From SPLC:
Geller and (then-husband Michael) Oshry were co-owners, along with Christ Tsiropoulous, of at least two car dealerships before the Gellers divorced in 2007. That was the same year Collin Thomas, one of their salesmen, was gunned down while closing their dealership, Universal Auto World, one evening.
The investigation into the murder uncovered an alleged fraud ring. According to the New York Daily News, employees enabled “underground characters,” including “known” drug dealers, to buy luxury cars using fake identities. Eleven people who worked for the dealership, including Tsiropoulous, were arrested, but Geller escaped the scandal unscathed.
Yet Hannity allowed Geller to pretend to be the voice of morality. She accused Ghouse of “shilling for savages.”
And, of course, it’s all Obama’s fault. Geller announced:
This is the norming of jihad. Under President Bush, he (Ganushi) was banned. …But we have a president who is aligned with the jihad force.
Hannity ramped up the fear mongering, as he badgered Ghouse a little more:
"We are allowing our enemies access to our cities and our towns and putting our people in danger. Don’t you get that?"
Watch the unfair, unbalanced segment below from the 9/30/14 Hannity.
Mr. Ghouse, you seem like a nice person, one whose values I wholeheartedly share. But you appear to be spectacularly naive, and that does your cause no good at all.
Next time you’re invited to speak to media, spend 10 minutes or so checking them out ahead of time before you accept. Hannity— and Fox overall— has spent many, many years sliming and denigrating and fear-mongering about Islam, and as you may read on this site, they are hardly defenders of free speech for people who aren’t right-wing Christian — and I emphasize Christian — conservatives.
I don’t think you or any other Muslim should go on any Fox show ever because they only want you there to bully you and talk over you so you can’t make the points you hoped to make, and basically knock themselves out to make a monkey of you while their right-wing Muslim-hating audience cheers at home in front of their televisions. They will NEVER give you a fair shake and a fair hearing, and their audience doesn’t want to hear it, either.
But if you do decide to go anyway, prepare very carefully. Watch the show for a week or so
Your “host” was very close to him, and Turner acknowledged in a written statement that they were indeed good friends.
In this video your “host” was con fronted on the air live about his association with a neo Nazi.
It starts at the 4:12 mark.
Next time you are on his show. Ask him about his association with radicals. It’s called fair game.
www.TheGhousediary.com Defending freedom of speech on Hannity Show; Mike Ghouse with Pamela Geller about Tunisian scholar Sheikh Rachid al-Ghannouchi.
My strongest argument with Hannity and Geller was – I do not want America to change for Ghannouchi, I do not want our constitution be compromised for Ghannouchi, and I do not want American character to change for Ghannouchi.
I was completely taken back that Pamela Geller and Hannity were calling for a ban on Sheikh Rachid al-Ghannouchi’s featured speech at Yale Law School, they should be instead defending it.
Freedom of speech is the most enduring, stabilizing, sustainable value of a free society. Ultimately freedom should prevail over everything else. That is about the only thing I would die for and defend.
Ghannouchi has called for destruction of American properties and killing Americans, I don’t like it, but I will defend his right to speak.
I have defended Pamela Geller’s right to speak in London when they banned her from speaking, I have defended Terry Jones right to burn Qurans, and indeed we are making a film about freedom of speech. I have defended Fred Phelps right to be ugly with this anti-Jewish, anti-GLBT and anti-Immigrant demonstrations. I have opposed Arab League’s proposal at the United Nations to curb freedom of speech about religious personalities, and without any doubt Professor Ghannouchi should speak freely.
Freedom should be the ultimate winner. Indeed it is to our advantage to hear him out, understand where he is coming from and what he is going to lay it out. We should hear him and not ban him.
We cannot be hypocrites, and ban free speech for one and allow it for others.
My strongest argument with Hannity and Geller was – I do not want America to change because of Ghannouchi, I do not want our constitution be compromised for Ghannouchi, and I do not want our character to change for Ghannouchi.
Quran supports freedom of speech, there are numerous verses to that effect, but for now, I will quote two – 41:34 – Repel evil with whatever is better; there is chance that evil may mellow down, if you repel evil with evil, the conflict flares up and both sides will dig in their heels. Verse 2:256 gives clear unambiguous guidance – there shall be no compulsion for others to believe what you believe.
Freedom of speech is birth right, that is one simple thing that separated animals from humans and I will not let it be compromised.
I am surprised with the attacks on Twitter and floods of emails I am receiving from the right wing Christians, Muslims and Jews. Freedom of speech is an expectational America value, indeed, that is what separates us from the rest of the world. I would have expected them to defend it instead of attacking me.
Freedom of speech is a conservative value and I expected Sean Hannity to defend it, but he failed me.
Yale to Host Radical Terror Sheikh Who Advocated Killing of U.S. Soldiers
Controversial sheikh will headline lecture at Yale Law School
Mike Ghouse is a public speaker, thinker, writer and a commentator on Pluralism at work place, politics, religion, society, gender, race, culture, ethnicity, food and foreign policy. All about him is listed in several links at www.MikeGhouse.net and his writings are at www.TheGhousediary.com and 10 other blogs. He is committed to building cohesive societies and offers pluralistic solutions on issues of the day.
1. She is a 100% DYED-IN-THE-WOOL ISRAEL-SUPPORTING ZIONIST who, like the overwhelming majority of conservatives, was born and raised in AN ENVIRONMENT OF WEALTH AND PRIVILEGE in Hewlett Harbor on Long Island, one of the TONIEST communities in New York State
2. She was married from 1990-2007 and is the mother of FOUR CHILDREN.
3. Ergo, if Geller is so damn scared s**tless about ISIS, SHE SHOULD LEAD THE WAY BY MARCHING THE A**ES OF HER CHILDREN DOWN TO THE NEAREST ARMED FORCES RECRUITING CENTER RIGHT THIS INSTANT! It is VERY LIKELY that at least one of them is old enough to ENLIST in military service.