Should Breitbart have fired a reporter who blamed attacks on Muslims?
Breitbart is claimed to have fired reporter Katie McHugh after she tweeted the following:
"There would be no deadly terror attacks in the U.K. if Muslims didn't live there. #LondonBridge," Ms. McHugh wrote in a tweet still pinned to the top of her timeline.
Breitbart did not come out and say, "Hey, we fired Katie for this tweet," but Katie maintains that this is why she was let go.
McHugh herself confirmed she was out, tweeting, "Breitbart News fired me for telling the truth about Islam and Muslim immigration[.]" McHugh's comments prompted outrage from a number of her own colleagues. Breitbart employees who spoke to CNN Sunday characterized McHugh's remarks as "appalling," "terrible," and "dumb."
[McHugh, talking about herself in the third person, said] Breitbart News fired an editor for speaking frankly about Islam and Muslim immigration. If there were no Muslims in London, there would be no Muslim terror attacks, period.
Katie's statement about Muslim terror attacks, while blunt, is absolutely true. On the one hand, if there were no Muslims in the U.K., 99% of terrorism would be eliminated.
What Breitbart probably found uncomfortable about this statement is that it implies that all Muslims are terrorists.
All Muslims are not terrorists.
However, a small percentage of Muslims definitely are terrorists, and an alarming percentage of Muslims sympathize with terrorists. Forgive me for repeating things you probably already know:
1) Forty percent of Muslims want sharia law in the U.K. Sharia is not terrorism per se, but it is a repressive rule that oppresses women and non-Muslims.
3) Twenty-seven percent of British Muslims do not support the deportation of Islamic extremists preaching violence and hate.
4) Twenty-five percent of British Muslims disagree that a Muslim has an obligation to report terrorists to police.
5) Forty-five percent of British Muslims agree that clerics preaching violence against the West represent "mainstream Islam."
6) One in four young Muslims in Britain (and 1 in 5 overall) said they sympathize with those who fight for ISIS.
7) Two in three Muslims in Britain would not report terror plots to police.
And these were just the individuals willing to admit it to pollsters. The real numbers of Islamist supporters is probably higher.
So the problem is not simply the undeniably deadly fraction of 1% who kill; it is also their larger support group, a substantial percentage of the Muslim population. For every terrorist attack you hear about, there are hundreds of less reported incidents of Muslims beating up people, of Muslims committing violent crimes. The Muslims have their own "no go" zones that police do not venture into, but Muslims do venture out of them. That's why many Jewish people are fleeing the United Kingdom – because they don't feel safe anymore.
In light of that, Katie's comments are entirely reasonable. As enlightened people, we cringe at the idea of painting with a broad brush and labeling an entire people. I for one have encountered individual Muslims who are very nice people. But some significant portion of the Muslim population in England, as in other Western countries, is part of the problem.
Breitbart probably feared that its British operations would be in jeopardy if Katie had not been fired, that it would be banned like Michael Savage. If Katie had written a more nuanced message, writing what I have above, perhaps it would have been different (or perhaps not). But until more and more of us talk about the problem in the Muslim community, the problem will only get worse, and it's sad that Breitbart of all sources would kowtow to this sort of political correctness. It's little better than watching the prime minister of Great Britain talk about the need to better patrol Facebook pages and "confront extremism" without talking about the elephant in the room.
Ed Straker is the senior writer at NewsMachete.com.