Last week, I wrote in my WND column about The Learning Channel’s new “All-American Muslim” program, which is an attempt to guilt-trip Americans into thinking that it is “Islamophobic” to be concerned about the jihad threat. As you’d expect, the mainstream media love this show, and CNN’s Anderson Cooper gave it lavish attention, even inviting me to be on a panel discussing the show with some of its cast members. But what happened then was indicative of how the leftist media stack the deck.
A couple of days before the show aired, Jen Zweben of Cooper’s new daytime talk show contacted me, asking me to be part of an audience group reacting to the show. Knowing that I would probably be the lone voice of dissent, I politely declined. But then Kira Kleaveland, Cooper’s associate producer, emailed me: “We’d like to invite you to come on the show tomorrow” – not just as one of the audience members, but as a featured commentator.
Kleaveland made all the arrangements for my appearance on Anderson Cooper’s show. We did a pre-interview over the phone about what I thought about “All-American Muslim”; she also sent me preview clips of it and asked me to send her my reaction. I sent her this: “This program is designed to counter the fictional threat of ‘Islamophobia’ by showing Muslims who aren’t terrorist monsters, but ordinary people living ordinary lives, balancing tradition and modern life, dealing with their families, their jobs, etc. It is an attempt to manipulate Americans into ignoring the threat of jihad and to bully them into thinking that being concerned about the jihad threat would somehow victimize these nice people in this show. The problem is not people, it’s ideology. The show doesn’t address that.”
Shortly after I sent Kleaveland that (and the night before my appearance), she wrote me this: “Sorry to cancel you after you watched the clips, and it has nothing to do with what you’ve said in the PRE [the pre-interview] or in email, but we just went thru the segments and we just don’t have time for everything we planned. So we won’t be needing you to come tomorrow. I really appreciate you taking the time to speak with me and for making yourself available last minute. I hope we haven’t cause you too much inconvenience.”
Kleveland was lying; their plans hadn’t changed at all. They just wanted to make sure that voices critical of the program were not heard. But to appear “objective” to their gullible viewers, they reached out to Melanie Oberg, a writer for American Patriots Press who had started a Facebook page entitled “Boycott TLC for New Program, ‘All-American Muslim.’” Without telling her that they had contacted me, they flew her to New York and threw her into the lion’s den. According to David DiCrescenzo of American Patriots Press, “Melanie stood her ground, regardless of the fact that Mr. Cooper and the audience were clearly against her, as was at least one of the ‘panelists.’”
Why did Anderson Cooper cancel my appearance and instead victimize Melanie Oberg, subjecting her to the scorn and derision of a subjective audience, not to mention that of the notoriously Islamophilic Cooper (whose enthusiasm for Islamic supremacism confounds me: as a gay man he should stand shoulder-to-shoulder with anti-Shariah activists).
Why did Anderson Cooper have room for only one person who opposed the show on principle? Why couldn’t he have put together a panel that included an equal number of people on either side? Why was Anderson Cooper afraid to have me or any other seasoned counter-jihadists on the show? Why didn’t he have knowledgeable experts on Islam and Islamic terror, such a Robert Spencer or Steven Emerson? Why didn’t he include the courageous ex-Muslims who know all about what Islamic communities are like from the inside, and who speak honestly about the oppression of women, the hatred for non-Muslims and the other horrors that are all too common in those communities – like Ibn Warraq, Wafa Sultan, Nonie Darwish or Ayaan Hirsi Ali?
Was he afraid that people might hear and consider the truth?