Red meat to the hounds

So there’s a six hour teach-in at Columbia University, featuring thirty different speakers, during the course of which one guy makes an incredibly stupid remark hoping for “a million Mogadishus.”

And of course, every reporter on the scene knows the lede when they hear it, forget the other five hours and fifty five minutes of presumably rational discourse.

I don’t even need to look to know that the warbloggers are all over this. Andrew Sullivan gets an entire column out of it: “A Million Mogadishus-the Far Left’s Wish?”

(No, Andrew. But how’s this for an idea: “Stupid, Unrepresentative Comments: A Lazy Propagandist’s Dream!”)

According to my sources at Columbia, this nonsense has also led to various death threats being phoned in to various offices. Oh, and they’ve also been made in the pages of the New York Post:

March 30, 2003 — Where’s the Ohio National Guard when you really need it?


Hey, if a campus crank can wish for personal calamity to befall U.S. forces in Iraq, why not fantasize about a volley of Kent State-style militia musketry rattled off in his general direction?

Ha ha. Those kidders.

Update: Patrick Nielsen Hayden has some thoughts.

In fact, the whole argument about “extremism” is based on the essentialist — and false — idea that views like Professor DeGenova’s are in some way an “extreme” form of views like (for instance) mine. Based on this kind of thinking, both Calpundit and the Post, in their different ways, lay responsibility for the DeGenovas of the world at the feet of people like me. So long as a single speaker at one obscure protest event calls for the death of American soldiers, it’ll be okay for major newspapers to advocate the shooting of protestors. So long as anyone calling themselves a “liberal” or a “leftist” gets themself into a censorious snit over Adrien Brody kissing Halle Berry at the Oscars, it’s okay to characterize the rest of us as prissy killjoys.