MSNBC has been forced to cut ties with one of its regular guest experts after he made a racially charged slur against Louisiana Governor Bobby Jindal.
Arsalan Iftikhar, a human rights attorney and TV commentator, was responding to Jindal’s statements about alleged “no-go zones” in Europe in an interview with MNSBC anchor Alex Wagner
According to Iftikhar, “I think Gov. Jindal is protesting a bit too much … he might be trying to, you know, scrub some of the brown off of his skin as he runs to the right in a Republican presidential exploratory bid…”
Wagner seemed to gloss over this apparently racist statement and just moved on. See embed below.
Jindal, who is considered likely to seek the presidency in 2016, is of Indian heritage.
Yesterday, an MSBC spokesman announced that “We found this guest’s comments offensive and unacceptable and we don’t plan on inviting him back.”
In response to Iftikahar’s original allegation, the two-term governor told the Washington Examiner that “It’s embarrassing for MSNBC to give voice to such shallow foolishness. Much like Michael Moore denigrating our military servicemen, these comments deserve no comment… I will not be silenced. Radical Islam must be stopped, and we must stop pretending. It is time for the Western world to face reality…”
For his part, Iftikahar told CNN (a network where he also appears often) that “I will apologize to Bobby Jindal when he apologizes to seven million American Muslims for advancing the debunked ‘Muslim no-go zones’ myth.”
The supposed existence of no-go zones has been addressed by various media outlets in the past. Since Fox News had to apologize for a guest who falsely claimed that the city of Birmingham in the U.K. was “totally Muslim,” there may or may not be some reverse-engineering going on by journalists.
The Gatestone Institute think tank claims that “The problem of no-go zones is well documented, but multiculturalists and their politically correct supporters vehemently deny that they exist. Some are now engaged in a concerted campaign to discredit and even silence those who draw attention to the issue.”
Nigel Farage, a member of the European Parliament and leader of the populist UK Independence Party, has also declared that certain self-contained Muslim enclaves in Europe, where police no longer regularly patrol, operate under Sharia Law rather than civil law.
The controversy over alleged no-go zones has prompted the mayor of Paris to threaten to sue Fox News for defamation, although this probably just amounts to attention-getting chatter and left-right posturing with Fox as a convenient punching bag this time. The Fox News Channel finished 2014 as the most-watched cable news network (for the 13th year in a row) and in fourth place in primetime viewership for all of basic cable.
In the aftermath of the Ifitikhar comment, HotAir.com columnist Noah Rothman opined that “If you followed the toxic enthusiasm MSNBC hosts and guests displayed for hurling accusations of racism or racial insensitivity toward Republicans in 2012, then a recent segment on that cable news network involving comments made by Bobby Jindal should sound lamentably familiar… [MSNBC’s] compulsion to project racial anxieties onto Republicans is disturbing, but it is no longer shocking. Jindal should be ready to deal with all the insulting racial scorn with which former Republican presidential candidate Herman Cain contended…”
With that being said, ratings-challenged MNSBC, which gives a daily platform to Al Sharpton, is no stranger to racially charged rhetoric for which it was compelled to apologize.
For example, Last May, Toure apologized on Twitter for previously tweeting that Jews who managed to survive Hitler’s genocide in the Holocaust did so because of “the power of whiteness.” In the same month, the liberal network issued multiple apologies for a segment about Cinco de Mayo that many found offensive.
You may also recall that host Melissa Harris-Perry apologized three times for mocking 2012 GOP presidential candidate Mitt Romney’s African-American grandchild. And earlier in 2014, MSNBC President Phil Griffin apologized for a racially offensive tweet about a Cheerios commercial that would supposedly be hated by “right-wingers” and fired the employee responsible.
[image credit: dsb nola]