Shortly after the attacks on 9/11, then-president George W. Bush said that America would go anyplace in the world to defeat terrorist organizations like Al Qaeda. Since then, America has taken the battle to Afghanistan, Iraq, and Pakistan (albeit covertly) as part of the war on terror. President Obama has continued the war on terror with great success using Predator drone strikes and good intelligence to hunt down and kill terrorists where they live and hide out; even in Pakistan. But the president has been lax in pursuing the most dangerous terror group even though his administration knows where they are headquartered and how they are funded. If Obama is serious about defeating terrorism, he has to direct his administration to pursue Fox News and its pundits for their carefully planned terror campaign on the American people.
Fox News supports and encourages the fear monger Glenn Beck by allowing him to misinform listeners with lies about the Democrats and especially President Obama. Beck works in concert with Sarah Palin by terrifying their audience into a feeling of despair and hopelessness, and Palin follows up with violent gun metaphors as a means of stopping the President and Democrats from inflicting damage on America.
There are more ways to inflict terror on a population than bombing innocent civilians or taking down passenger jets. In Beck’s case, he tells his audience what President Obama intends on doing to them and it is not appealing. Beck has spent time warning listeners that the President will kill 10% of the American people who cannot be re-educated in the Marxist philosophy. Although the president has never uttered such nonsense, Beck’s audience believes his lies and in moments of desperation will take Sarah Palin’s admonition to heart when she says, “don’t retreat, instead reload.”
Beck has also claimed that President Obama may try and kill Beck himself for exposing the administration’s attempt at forcing Marxism on the country. It is horrific enough for Beck to infer that the president would kill him to silence him, but using Jesus and Moses to fortify his opposition to the fictional Marxist takeover is nothing less than evil. Beck is well-aware that his followers are mostly devout Christians who are willing to take up arms to defend themselves against the godless Marxists and Communists that Obama is serving.
If anyone thinks that Beck’s inflammatory rhetoric doesn’t incite his audience to violence, they are mistaken. His terrorist commentary bears fruit with people who are mentally instable and it was manifest in Oakland in July 2010 when a man was involved in a shootout with police. The man, Byron Williams, was on his way to attack The Tides Foundation, a group Beck includes in his rants against ACORN, SEIU, and George Soros. The man’s mother said that her son was agitated at the government’s “left-wing agenda” after listening to Beck rail on the group for months. Fortunately, the man was intercepted by police before he could fulfill his mission or there would be blood on Beck’s hands. Although Beck would have ultimately attempted to turn the tables and blame the left as is his wont.
Beck’s associate, Sarah Palin, plays to the same emotions that Beck does by inflaming her followers with threats of death panels and loss of freedoms at the hands of the Obama Administration. Instead of using campaign rhetoric that at least loosely imitates conventional practice, she terrifies her audience with images of government officials killing grandma and then uses gun metaphors as a solution to the problem. It is despicable and dangerous, but if it sells advertising or frightens ignorant Americans into voting for tea party candidates, Palin feels justified.
It is doubtful that Beck or Palin expect their followers to take up arms against the government, legislators, or innocent bystanders, but the shooting in Arizona on Friday and the shootout with police in Oakland are stark reminders that words have consequences. Although Beck, Palin, and the liars at Fox News may not intend for their audience to resort to violence, they do know that they are using fear and lies to motivate listeners instead of using information. The fact that Beck and Palin scrubbed their sites of gun images or comments referencing guns indicates they know they are culpable for their followers’ actions.
Glenn Beck claims he is just an entertainer, but his audience embraces his comments as reality and news. Palin says she decries violence and hates killing, but her violent rhetoric and firearm metaphors tell a different story, and her audience believes what they hear and see. Fox News and its pundits Beck, Palin, Hannity, and the rest know they are playing on their audience’s fears of a black president and his Marxist, Nazi, or Communist conspiracy to destroy America.
Al Qaeda instills terror by using violence as a means of control and Fox News instills fear by using threats of losing freedoms. Instilling fear to control voters is no different than the Taliban beheading innocent civilians to control a population. It is all terrorism. Fox News is a terror organization and they have been since the 2008 presidential campaign, and it has grown exponentially since the election of Barack Obama.
America is in a war on terror around the world, and we should be at war with the terrorists at Fox News. The Constitution guarantees the right of free speech and it is a slippery slope to attempt to change that right. However, when that right is abused and causes another to lose their freedoms, it must be examined under a different light. The massacre in Arizona on Friday may not have a causal relationship to Glenn Beck and Sarah Palin’s violent rhetoric or fear mongering, but it does raise the question of what constitutes terrorism. If incendiary rhetoric terrifies an unhinged person so they feel their only recourse is to use a gun to stop the cause of fear, then the rhetoric is terrorism. Fox News, Sarah Palin, and Glenn Beck use terror to influence their audience, so by extension they are a terror organization and must be included as enemies in the war on terror. Any other characterization is inaccurate and dangerous to America.