The Jury Talks Back

8/10/2017

CNN Should Not Have Fired Jeffrey Lord

Filed under: Uncategorized — Patterico @ 7:30 pm

I despise shameless Trump enthusiasts who routinely make laughable arguments on Trump’s behalf. Jeffrey Lord falls squarely in that category. In a way, I can’t believe I’m about to defend Jeffrey Lord.

But I’m about to defend Jeffrey Lord.

CNN fired Lord today because he sarcastically tweeted “Sieg Heil” at someone he considers to be a fascist.

That’s a bad reason to fire someone.

Here’s how CNN reported the story:

CNN severed ties with Jeffrey Lord on Thursday, hours after he ignited controversy by tweeting the words “Sieg Heil!” at a prominent liberal activist.

“Nazi salutes are indefensible,” a CNN spokesperson said in a statement. “Jeffrey Lord is no longer with the network.”

To call Lord’s tweet a “Nazi salute” requires one to deliberately blind oneself to the context.

Here’s what really happened. Lord wrote a column about Angelo Carusone, the president of Media Matters. See if you can discern Lord’s opinion about Carusone and Media Matters from certain subtle clues hidden in the following passages from Lord’s column:

Over there at Media Matters — aka Media Matters Fascists, the anti-free speech bigots who, in typical fascist style, make it their mission to shut down speech they don’t like — MMF’s Angelo Carusone has come to my Twitter feed to respond.

. . . .

I am even happier that he has put his fascist spirit out there in reprintable form.

. . . .

You have been playing this fascist game for years with others — Rush Limbaugh, Glenn Beck, Bill O’Reilly etc etc. If there is a conservative with an audience of any size your fascist instinct is not to debate honestly but to simply silence the opposition. Period.

. . . .

This is America, Angelo. Not Fascist Italy, Nazi Germany or Communist Russia.

Did you catch that? I went ahead and put the clues in bold in case it was too understated.

I think maybe Lord thinks Carusone is a fascist.

I’m not saying it’s great writing. Lord could try consulting a thesaurus every now and then. But I sense a certain theme to the passage. And that theme is: “Angelo Carusone is a fascist.”

So then, today, the following Twitter exchange occurs:

Lord tweets out his column. Carusone tries to bust Lord’s chops, and Lord responds by saying “Sieg Heil.”

It’s . . . kind of obvious what’s happening there, isn’t it? For CNN to say that’s a “Nazi salute” is to suggest that Lord meant it unironically. But you can’t possibly be familiar with the context and think that.

This is just the latest example of the left calling for someone’s head on a platter by ignoring the context of what they said, and imposing a completely unreasonable meaning on the words.

As much as I despise Lord, I despise this worse.

[Cross-posted at RedState.]

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