Tuesday, September 19, 2006

This is Your Media

[posted by Callimachus]

The only thing more frightening than a journalist doing math is a journalist doing religion.

The Associated Press, for instance, completely missed the obvious reference to the sacrament in the al Qaida response to Pope Benedict's speech:

Al-Qaida in Iraq and its allies said Muslims would be victorious and addressed the pope as "the worshipper of the cross," saying "you and the West are doomed as you can see from the defeat in Iraq, Afghanistan, Chechnya and elsewhere. ... We will break up the cross, spill the liquor and impose the 'jizya' tax, then the only thing acceptable is a conversion (to Islam) or (being killed by) the sword."

Islam forbids drinking alcohol and requires non-Muslims to pay the "jizya" tax, though those who convert are exempt.

Even the Islamists know more about the sacrament than AP does. And, no, their principal purpose here isn't Carrie Nation-style prohibition.

In case you're wondering what the newsroom reaction to this story is: One of the normal (i.e. non-BDS-infected) editors said something like, "'We will kill those who call us violent.' you know, these people need to grow up and get a thicker skin." There was a lot of silence and a bit of mumbling off the rest, for whom Muslims are only victims of America and for whom Bush's Christianity is the only evil religion. Then one of them hit on the answer sure to chase away every cloud and make bright every day -- make a Bush joke.

"Hey, Ratzy, you're doing a heckuva job."

And the whole crew got off a hearty laugh. And it was off to the races with Bush jokes. And Pope jokes. And all was right again with the MSM world.