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This Week In Crazy: Beyond The GOP Debate

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This Week In Crazy: Beyond The GOP Debate


1. Pamela Geller

When police arrested a 14-year-old student in Irving, Texas for bringing to class a homemade clock, it made for an ugly picture: slight, bespectacled Ahmed Mohamed, wearing a NASA t-shirt and handcuffs, being taken into custody in his school, because panicky teachers mistook his harmless creation for a bomb.

People leapt to his defense on social media via the hashtag #IStandWithAhmed, and Mohamed received shoutouts of support from the president—who invited him to the White House—Mark Zuckerberg, and MIT, and even snagged a TV interview with Chris Hayes.

The whole affair kicked off a national debate about the consequences of racial profiling, the fine line between discrimination and vigilance, and whether or not we as a country should be afraid of circuit boards.

Of course, there was one person who saw it differently: Pamela Geller, the vile Islamophobic troll and head of the American Freedom Defense Initiative, which the Southern Poverty Law Center classifies as an active anti-Muslim group.

You may recall Geller as the agitator who merrily launched a “Draw Mohammad” event with the express intention of baiting Muslims: “Are we going to surrender to these monsters?” she said at the time.

On her blog, Geller offered her unique perspective on the events in Texas:

When questioned about the device was [sic], the student, Ahmed Mohamed, wouldn’t answer. Now terror-tied Islamic groups like Hamas-CAIR, their media lapdogs and even President Obama are waging jihad against the school.

Geller’s choice of the word “jihad” is specious to say the least, and her claim that Mohamed wouldn’t answer police questions is utterly false: The student repeatedly explained that he had made a digital clock, whose alarm just happened to ring at an inopportune time. Geller continued:

This whole thing smells like a set-up. With ISIS in America, and young moderate Muslims are fleeing to Syria to join the terror group, the Irving school’s response was rational and reasonable. [emphasis Geller’s]

[…] The teachers were just trying to protect the school and the school children. Islamic supremacists will have their heads.

Could this simply have been a case of law enforcement acting rashly and inappropriately? No, Geller asserts, it’s a “set-up,” inextricably linked with extremist violence the world over.

And why can’t the American people see that? Probably because the president’s a Muslim.

But the Texas teen was never charged. And it seems he’s pretty innocent, yes? No! Come on, his name isMohamed.”

What are you getting at, Pamela? ISIS. ISIS. ISIS. ISIS. ISIS.

Ah, good point.

Illustration above: DonkeyHotey via Flickr 

Check out previous editions of This Week In Crazy here. Think we missed something? Let us know in the comments!

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Sam Reisman

Sam Reisman is the former managing editor at The National Memo, where he still writes the weekly "This Week In Crazy" column. His writing has appeared in Flavorpill, The Huffington Post, Columbia Daily Spectator, and Bwog. He was the publisher of the 2010 edition of Inside New York, an annual guidebook to the city for students and young professionals.

Since 2011, he has co-curated and hosted Peculiar Streams, a showcase for NYC-based writers, musicians, comedians, and filmmakers. He is a staff writer at Mediaite, and blogs at SamReisman.com.

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  1. Dominick Vila September 18, 2015

    What people like Roy Moore, and most Republicans, including those running for the GOP nomination, don’t seem to understand, or opt to ignore, is that the party that purportedly embraces the rule of law is the one calling for a Constitutional Amendment to render the 14th Amendment birthday right clause null and void. They don’t understand that members of the party that advocates smaller and less intrusive government, are the ones calling for government intervention to end the so called sanctuary cities.
    What these ideologues and religious zealots really want are laws that allow them to pursue their narrow goals, regardless of what the majority of Americans prefer or want. What they want is not a smaller government, but a government they can use to impose their philosophical and material preferences on others with impunity. Last, but not least, they brazenly admit they want to make sure future nominees to the supreme Court have and demonstrate unequivocal loyalty to the agenda they embrace, rather than a Constitution they embrace when it supports their preferences, and ignore or trash when it proves to be an obstacle to the achievement of their goals.
    The worst part of what is happening is that most of us, and especially the media, remain indifferent to the dangers posed by people willing to do anything to achieve their goals, with little or no regard for what is best for our society or our country.

    1. jointerjohn September 18, 2015

      Correct Dominic, but moreover today’s republican party has loaded its wagon with cherrypickers. They hand select choice portions from the U.S. Constitution, history, and scientific fact; based solely upon whether they like the way the selection serves their beliefs. They do the same thing to their precious Bible and its their book! Evidence, fact and reason are challenges to these people, and they consider open-mindedness a weakness. They choose the desired conclusion first and then collect just the evidence which supports it. They learned how to do that in church.

    2. @HawaiianTater September 18, 2015

      Your comments are always good, Dom, but this one is completely spot on. A theocracy is exactly what they want. Everything with these people is like living in bizzaro world where everything they say is the opposite of what they mean. They say they want the government out of our lives but they want the government in a woman’s uterus. They say Christians are being persecuted but what they really mean is they are mad because Christians are no longer being allowed to persecute. They say they want to uphold the Constitution but what they really want is a Christian nation that is forced to live by the bible.

      Speaking of the SCOTUS… if one of these zealots were to take the WH at this point and stack the court with fellow zealots, that’s the sort of thing that the USA as we know it may never recover from. Even the best case scenario has our country screwed for decades.

      1. Dominick Vila September 19, 2015

        Thank you. The possibility of the GOP controlling Congress and the White House, and nominating/confirming far right Justices to the Supreme Court should be the top priority for every American with a minimal amount of common sense when he consider who to vote for next year. The last thing we need is a solid majority of Alito’s, Scalia’s and Thomas’ in the SCOTUS.

        1. @HawaiianTater September 19, 2015

          If you listen to the analytics people who study things like the electoral college and demographics, they’ll say that the real presidential race is the Democratic primary. Still, the things you pointed out are enough to make any sane person terrified.

          1. Dominick Vila September 19, 2015

            Democrats do have an Electoral College advantage, but I would not dismiss the effectiveness of a well funded campaign, the pregnant chad precedent, or the effects of re-redistricting. Democrats can’t afford to sit out the 2016 election. It may well be one of the most important in decades, considering the fact that the GOP already controls the House and the Senate, and that it is unlikely we will get either one back. Maybe the Senate, but I doubt it.

    3. Louis Allen September 20, 2015

      In what has become a more and more frequent display of intellectual dishonesty from you, you state, without any qualms, that: “They don’t understand that members of the party that advocates smaller
      and less intrusive government, are the ones calling for government
      intervention to end the so called sanctuary cities.”

      As if the enforcement of our laws was not PRECISELY the central objective of the Executive Branch.

      And as if these sanctuary cities were not blatantly (and obscenely) violating/ignoring the rule of law.

      And as if the federal government were somehow overstepping its bounds by PROSECUTING the ROGUE and immoral mayors of these cities (when, and if, Obama EVER gets the “spine” and finds the moral wherewithal to do that.

      I am sure you know better than that.

      And I am sure you, to use a word that liberals love to employ when caught with “their hands on the cookie jar”, MISSPOKE.

      Shame on you.

      1. Dominick Vila September 20, 2015

        No, I did not misspeak. There is nothing in the Constitution that obligates our government to deport “illegals” for the simple reason that there was no such a thing when the Constitution was written. The fact that we have had immigration laws since the mid 1930s that require passports and entry visas does not supersede or abrogate constitutional state rights. If the citizens of San Francisco, for example, decide to extend sanctuary rights to undocumented immigrants, that’s within their rights as U.S. citizens, and there is nothing, short of using dictatorial powers, the Feds can do about it.
        I find it amusing when I read opinions or claims made by those who believe that the government is the problem, not the solution, calling for a Federal government so large an intrusive that it can deny citizens to decide what is best for them, and instead propose the imposition of the will of a minority on the majority of Americans.

        1. Louis Allen September 20, 2015

          Ok, so you deny that you misspoke. I that case, you are not being consistent in your views.
          You see nothing wrong when the Federal government overrides Arizona attempts to compensate for Obama’s unwillingness to enforce immigration laws?
          And yet, you state that if the citizens of San Francisco decide NOT to follow immigration laws THAT’S within their rights as citizens?
          Think before you write, and use your common sense.
          Your slip is showing ….

          P.S. – Following the shooting death of Kathryn Steinle in San Francisco (a sanctuary city) by an undocumented immigrant, Hillary Clinton told CNN on 8 July 2015: “I have absolutely no support for a city that ignores the strong evidence that should be acted on.”
          The following day, her campaign stated: “Hillary Clinton believes that
          sanctuary cities can help further public safety, and she has defended
          those policies going back years.”
          You, sir, are as conveniently ambiguous as Hillary.
          Admit that “sanctuary” cities’ mayors deserve to have their dirty fannies in JAIL.

          1. Dominick Vila September 21, 2015

            The actions proposed by Arizona were a clear violation of the Constitution, existing laws, and human rights. The worst that can be said about San Francisco’s decision to become a sanctuary city is that their approach may be naive, but not that it is unconstitutional or that it broke any laws. BTW, which part of the Constitution and which specific law did they break? To the best of my knowledge, deportation of illegal immigrants is not a law, it is a proposal, or a solution to a problem that requires cool heads instead of over reactions.

          2. Louis Allen September 21, 2015

            How is it even possible to offer a rational response to
            so wildly irrational arguments?
            Plain, unadulterated intellectual dishonesty.

            I rest my case.

  2. FireBaron September 18, 2015

    God help the people of Alabama. As long as Roy Moore is around, they are going to need all the help that HE can give them. Moore would like nothing better than to bring about a Theocracy where he and others of like mind could make all the rules, and woe be unto him or her that does not follow them.

    Ted Cruz? Fundamentalist Christian White Supremacists? Why is this a surprise? This is the Worthy Senator from Canada’s biggest support group! Now, if only they would realize that he is not a native-born US citizen and, therefore, not eligible for the Presidency?

    Russia being God-Fearing? Only if you recognize the Divinity of Vladimir Vladimirovich, Tsar of All Russias. Of course, I am more than willing to help them pack their bags and leave! I am sure they will love life in the “Workers’ Paradise”!

    Ann Coulter went off the deep end back in the 90s. She still hasn’t recovered from having failed as one of Paula Corbin Jones’ lawyers in going after the only guy in the entire Arkansas government that Ms. Jones DIDN’T go to bed with!

    Finally, Pamela Geller, please move to Israel. Let them deal with the security risk you bring with you. Although, considering that the Ultra-Orthodox would relegate you to some corner where you wouldn’t disturb their studies with their ranting, this could be a good thing.

    1. plc97477 September 18, 2015

      cruz is hoping for vp that is why he is trumps butt kisser.

  3. Kurt CPI September 18, 2015

    On the homemade alarm clock, the school and police acted appropriately. A homemade digital clock is going to look a lot like those digital detonators we see in the movies, don’t you think? It wouldn’t matter if the person bringing it to school was of European, African, Middle Eastern, or any other ethnic descent – something that looks like a bomb in a school has to be treated like a bomb! Political correctness can’t be allowed to reach the level where a specific ethnic group is permitted to bring something that looks like a bomb to school only because it might appear like profiling.

    1. chino49p September 18, 2015

      You make no sense. The 14yr. old presented the clock to his teacher who obviously noted that there was no explosives present, just a homemade clock. The teacher didn’t call for any students to be evacuated or even keep the clock for security measures. When police arrived, they didn’t evacuate the students either, because there was no danger. There was nothing to even infer that the student had tried to plant the clock on school property as to scare anybody. There was absolutely no reason to handcuff the kid or to interrogate him without his parents or legal counsel present. You foolishly state that something that looks like a bomb in a school has to be treated like a bomb! Well thats just exactly what they DID NOT DO. Do you understand that. They knew it was not a bomb, and had no information that he tried to plant it as a hoax, yet they persecuted the kid anyway and denied him his rights. They even searched him and his backpack. They say they decided not to press charges. Thats a lie. The fact is that there were no charges that they could press. It was a false arrest, based on false paranoia of a Muslim kid. They are just trying to lower thier chances of getting sued, which I hope the kids family does sue them.

      1. Kurt CPI September 19, 2015

        This, and the post by Paul Bass, make good points.

    2. Paul Bass September 18, 2015


      Great Post Sent to Me Today

      I said: it’s sad they thought that kid had a bomb.
      She said: they didn’t think he had a bomb.
      I said: yes, they thought he made a bomb and even called the police.
      She said: They just wanted to humiliate a little Muslim boy. They didn’t think he had a bomb.
      I said: Don’t be a conspiracy theorist. They might be a little prejudiced, but I’m sure they thought he had a bomb.
      She said: OK.
      But they didn’t evacuate the school, like you do when there’s a bomb.
      They didn’t call a bomb squad – like you do when there’s a bomb.
      They didn’t get as far away from him as possible, like you do when there’s a bomb.
      Then they put him and the clock in an office: not like you do when there’s a bomb
      Then they waited with him for the police to arrive, and then they put the clock in the same car as the police.
      Then they took pictures of it.

      I said: Damn…..They never thought he had a bomb.

      The Irving PD, & the School Admin will be rightfully sued.
      They can now pay Ahmed’s way to MIT.
      “They never thought he had a bomb”

    3. Otto Greif September 18, 2015

      There is nothing homemade about the “clock”. I suspect the “clock” was intentionally made by the boy’s father to resemble a breifcase bomb.

      1. Kurt CPI September 19, 2015

        Boloney. I helped my daughter build a “Rube Goldberg” machine for her middle school science fair. It had every imaginable part from every contraption we could think of to make it as elaborate as possible. A home-made clock is the digital age equivalent. I would expect to see alot of that kind of thing being constructed by students in the 21st century.

        1. Otto Greif September 19, 2015

          It’s not a homemade clock, it’s a partly disassembled clock, affixed to a briefcase. How is that a science project, and what is the use of clock inside a briefcase? This thing is a scam, and you people are gullible.

    4. jmprint September 18, 2015

      No one likes to be handcuffed and humiliated, call his parents, let them explain, that’s what I would have expected from any decent human being. People’s, angers, fears and blindness are violating other people’s rights.

      1. Kurt CPI September 19, 2015

        Calling parents doesn’t diffuse a bomb. The situation MUST be treated as a threat until proven otherwise. Diffuse the situation, detain the involved people only long enough to determine that there is no threat. Once that determination has been made, immediately release them with an apology. Certainly call the parents, but protect the community first! The police and school did exactly what they should have.

        1. TimF September 19, 2015

          Yet, the school wasn’t evacuated. The bomb squad wasn’t called. If they for one second thought it might be a real bomb, then the school administrators were incompetent. More likely they immediately knew it was only a clock.

    5. JPHALL September 19, 2015

      So why didn’t they evacuate the school and call the bomb squad? This has nothing to do with political correctness.

  4. geraldhoey September 18, 2015

    As I read these articles every Friday I can’t help but wonder, “Will we ever run out of right wing crazy.” The answer is obviously no.

    1. plc97477 September 18, 2015

      No in fact they seem to be getting worse.

      1. bckrd1 September 26, 2015

        Politics has become so disgusting that only the crazy people are running.

        Normal people are having difficulty “playing the game”. Those who want to make a real difference and can stomach politics, is a rarity now. We need more of the latter and less of the former.

  5. jmprint September 18, 2015

    I couldn’t believe when I read Governor Abbots tweet. “Cruz kicked Irans butt. The praising is sickning

  6. Eyeball_Kid September 18, 2015

    Are there any fascists among us?


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