Uncharacteristically silent about the Juan Williams' firing from NPR, Jesse Jackson finally chirped his condemnation, one of the few liberals to do so. But for him it was rather mellow criticism:
"NPR was wrong because they did not afford him freedom of speech," Jackson said. "They did it in a way that was unfair. The context was he was arguing with Bill O'Reilly, saying why he should not be so virulently anti-Muslim ... It reminded me so much of the case with Shirley Sherrod. They jumped so quick."
"I think that some of this predisposition towards Fox was the reason for the gotcha," Jackson said. "If they did not want his point of view, they should have said, ‘When your contract is over, you do not fit into our scheme of things.' And then (he'd) go gracefully and with dignity. But to fire him in that way, and then to suggest he should see a psychiatrist, it was beneath the character and reputation of NPR."
(Ms. Sherrod was fired quickly from the Agriculture Department when some of her seemingly racist comments were revealed to have been taken out of context.)
Sooooo, will Jackson send out his troops, call out the media and demonstrate in front of NPR's offices--or even a local affiliate--threatening them with reprisals, lawsuits, boycotts and other extortion until he receives some payoff--his usual m.o.? Well, not exactly.
"NPR has an awful lot to offer. I support NPR, and I support Juan, whose an outstanding journalist," Jackson told DePuyt. "This is kind of a perfect storm ... I wish they would just end it because we need Juan doing what Juan does. Juan is analytical. He is critical. And he has a brilliant mind."
Hmmm, maybe NPR could offer Jackson a gig as oh, maybe a political analyst. Certainly he would meet NPR's standards of neutrality and non partisanship.