But Smiley kept going, insisting Christians were far worse than Muslim terrorists: "There are so many more examples of Christians -- and I happen to be a Christian. That's back to this notion of your idealizing Christianity in my mind, to my read. There are so many more examples, Ayaan, of Christians who do that than you could ever give me examples of Muslims who have done that inside this country, where you live and work."
Who would have thought that anyone would outdo Rosie O'Donnell, who insisted radical Christianity was "just as threatening" as radical Islam?
Ali calmly explained that Christians are far more tolerant. They take abuse on television programs without threatening to blow up Comedy Central offices or promise Daniel Pearl-style decapitations for executives. She acknowledged "not all Muslims are terrorists, we must emphasize that, but almost all terrorist activities that take place today in our time are done and justified in the name of Islam."
This caused another burst of illogic from Smiley, who compared the Fort Hood attack to the tea party activists protesting ObamaCare on Capitol Hill. "There are folk in the tea party, for example, every day who are being recently arrested for making threats against elected officials, for calling people 'n----r' as they walk into Capitol Hill, for spitting on people."
Put aside the thoroughly unproven accusations, now that Rep. Emanuel Cleaver has backed off the story of conservative spitters, and there is no audio or corroboration of the accusation of N-words being thrown. Had those events actually happened, would they in any way have been comparable to murder?
PBS has an ombudsman now to receive public complaints. Michael Getler should hear from across the country, from Christians and non-Christians alike, that Smiley must provide a retraction and an apology for his scurrilous and bigoted remarks against Christians and the billions that practice that faith. PBS stations across the country accept millions in funding from good-hearted Christian taxpayers who don't deserve to see allegedly "public" broadcasting attacking their integrity.
Seventy-seven percent of Americans call themselves Christian.
People in public broadcasting boast in their pledge drives, direct-mail fundraising letters and congressional testimony that they are an oasis of civility and intelligent discourse. But they host and help fund the unintelligent, inaccurate garbage coming out of the mouth of Tavis Smiley. This trash belongs in the Dumpster.