PJ Media, Robert Spencer, and Gutter Bigotry
by Sheila Musaji
Just last week, PJ media announced that Robert Spencer would be joining them as a weekly contributor. At that time, Charles Johnson published Hate Group Leader Robert Spencer Now Featured Writer at PJ Media: The Backstory in which he said “I suppose this is another indicator of how far to the right the conservative movement has swung, when a site like Pajamas Media, conceived as a place where left and right could meet and engage in rational debate, has become a hangout for the worst kind of gutter bigotry.”
Johnson was prescient. Today, Robert Spencer posted an article on PJ Media Is Michael Bloomberg Secretly a Muslim?
It is a typical Spencer article, but what is of interest comes in the comments section below the article.
PJ Media has the following statement at the bottom of articles where people can comment
PJ Media appreciates your comments that abide by the following guidelines:
1. Avoid profanities or foul language unless it is contained in a necessary quote or is relevant to the comment.
2. Stay on topic.
3. Disagree, but avoid ad hominem attacks.
4. Threats are treated seriously and reported to law enforcement.
5. Spam and advertising are not permitted in the comments area.
These guidelines are very general and cannot cover every possible situation. Please don’t assume that PJ Media management agrees with or otherwise endorses any particular comment. We reserve the right to filter or delete comments or to deny posting privileges entirely at our discretion. Please note that comments are reviewed by the editorial staff and may not be posted immediately.
In plain English that states that all comments will be reviewed by the editorial staff before they are published, and that threats will be taken seriously and reported to law enforcement. Perhaps this only refers to threats against PJ Media. The following comment was posted 8 hours ago, after having been reviewed. I am assuming that since it doesn’t contain any profanities, and the definition of what constitutes “foul language” may be different at PJ Media — that it is an acceptable comment that they believe stays on topic.
Proud Infidel - May all who worship the false prophet Muhammad (a thousand curses be unto his pig name) be slaughtered like the sub-human scum they are. I spit on your false prophet. The bottom of my feet are prettier than his ugly face. All muslims are terrorists and must die! - June 18, 2012 - 6:47 am
Although worshipping Muhammad or anyone except God is forbidden by Islam, that fact is obviously beyond the understanding of the commenter. Nevertheless, “Proud Infidel” thinks that Muslims worship Muhammad. Does the commenters fervent desire that Muslims “be slaughtered”, and that they “must die!” stay “on topic”? Does that mean that Spencer’s article is on the topic of why Muslims deserve to die?
Such statements may come under freedom of speech as far as the law is concerned, but certainly are not views that anyone claiming to be even marginally respectable would countenance. If this is the direction that Spencer’s association will take PJ Media, then it will be a very short time before they lose all credibility.