On Fox News Thursday night, Mark Steyn appeared on Hannity to discuss Charlie Hebdo, Islamic terror, and the media, sparing no mercy for the "eunuchs" of the American press and our comedians and satirists. Steyn scoffed at the idea that American press outlets are standing with journalists in France, noting that American papers didn't reprint the images the Hebdo cartoonists were killed over. Steyn also directly attacked the American impulse to give cover to Islam every time a new terror attack occurs.
The media congratulates itself on its bravery incessantly. And one of the most disgusting things it's done in the 24 hours since this happened is to maneuver Islam into the victim seat again. Islam always wants to play the victim role.
Steyn addressed the idea that American media are "standing with" or are showing "solidarity" with the journalists suffering and dying in Europe for daring to challenge Islam's desired authority. He had no patience for the empty pen gesture that was nearly ubiquitous in the last two days. He wondered why the press will not show the cartoons.
I think the pen gesture you just mentioned is pathetic really. I would be more impressed if people were to actually hold up copies of the Charlie Hebdo covers, that those cartoonists died for. They knew the risk that they were taking.
He continued by blasting editors for their cowardice:
We understand now that these people face a real threat because twelve of them are dead. And the best thing that could have happened is that all these journalists, the big shot editors, who all know each other, in New York and London and Paris and Berlin and all over the planet, had all said tomorrow morning we're going to put the cartoons these guys died for on the front page. Because you can't claim to defend free speech and freedom of expression when you let these guys be murdered and then you accept the rules set by the murderers, which is what the New York Times and CNN and all the rest are doing.
Steyn didn't leave the criticism just on the steps of the straight press outlets, though.
Yeah, I think Bill Maher is absolutely the exception, Sean. And, interestingly enough, the fellows in Charlie Hebdo are all basically men of the left. The people I mentioned a couple minutes earlier, the other cartoonists in Europe, they're all basically old-time secular lefties who think you should have the right to make the same jokes about Muslims that you make about Christians and Jews and everybody else. And the American left is not there for them.
And it was to me pitiful to listen to the sort of antiseptic eunuch statement that Jon Stewart issued last night. If Jon Stewart and Stephen Colbert are at the height of political satire in the United States, then I'll take these guys in France any day of the week. They're doing what real satirists do, which is offending you and challenging you over the serious questions of the day. They're not just doing lame old tired anti-Bush jokes a quarter century after he's left office. And these guys learned, these Euro lefties learned that when you're really up against it, when people are trying to kill you, that apart from Bill Maher and one or two other men of principle - I would rate Richard Dawkins, the famous atheist who nevertheless acknowledged yesterday that while he hates all religions, he actually has a bigger problem with Islam than any of the other ones for the obvious reason that they're trying to kill him and the other ones aren't - apart from Bill Maher and Richard Dawkins, there were actually very few principled lefties out there speaking up for these poor beleaguered guys over in Europe.
Steyn's accurate observation of how journalists in the United States handle Islamic terror is highlighted every day for anyone who has the unfortunate chance to watch MSNBC. Just look at this absurdity Jonah Goldberg calls "The Dumbest 57 Seconds Ever on TV."