An Open Letter To Ann Coulter
You know, I’ve always been a big fan of yours. I’ve read all your books, interviewed you twice (here and here), and quoted and linked your work countless times. Why have I done that? Because you’re intelligent, gutsy, and have a knack for saying things other people know are true, but don’t have the guts to say.
Unfortunately, you’ve always had one major flaw: you have the same sort of case of foot-in-mouth disease that people like Pat Robertson and Howard Dean have and regrettably, it seems to have gotten much worse of late.
Maybe in your mind, you think it’s not a problem. Maybe you think the people criticizing you are RINO wimps, that liberals get away with saying dumb things all the time, or that being outrageous actually helps you get attention.
But, you need to understand that this is a problem for you because you’re becoming a parody of yourself. Instead of being the old Ann, a brilliant, incisive writer who occasionally says controversial things to get a reaction, you’re becoming the new Ann, a controversialist who is so absurd that any brilliant things you happen to say get lost in the shuffle.
The CPAC controversy is a perfect example. Here you are at the biggest conservative event of the year, one attended by the Veep himself, and you take the opportunity to talk about, “ragheads,” which you must have fully known would make you sound like a grunting neanderthal. You should have apologized for those comments, but unsurprisingly, you didn’t know when to quit.
So, in your latest column, the first one you wrote after CPAC, you took the opportunity to talk about, “camel jockeys.” What will you be doing for an encore next week? Will you be slurring Muslims again or will you be branching out to different groups? I guess anything goes when your shtick is to be deliberately offensive and then claim people can’t take a joke when there are complaints. You know, Ann, that might work — oh, let’s say the first 40 times — but at some point it starts to get a little old.
That’s why you need two things at this point: some of your friends to tell you the truth about how this is going to affect your career if you keep it up and an editor to cut the garbage out of your columns and help you get back on track.
Of course, you’re not going to listen to me. But at least do this: go ask some of your famous conservative friends to really, honestly, tell you what they think. Talk to Drudge. Talk to Miguel Estrada. Ask them if they honestly think running around in public calling all Muslims, “ragheads,” and, “camel jockeys,” is okay. Ask them how appropriate is it to keeping making jokes about having liberal Supreme Court justices killed. Go read some of the other blogs out there, the conservative ones that talked about your CPAC appearance, you know, the sort of people who normally buy your books and link your columns, and see what they had to say. I can assure you that it wasn’t pretty.
Take it from a long-time supporter, Ann: your best days are behind you unless you snap out of it and start making some changes.
*** Update #1 ***: Just a few responses to things said in the comments section:
#1) “Which offends me more…a writer calling someone a camel jockey or a Revolutionary Council that chants “Death to America!” whenever they get together to discuss their future plans?” — MakeYourLivingOnline
Gee, why can’t you find them both offensive? Why is it supposed to be either/or? The idea that just because some Muslims do things that are offensive means that anything said about any Muslims is fair game, is asinine.
#2) Ann was dumb to talk about, “ragheads,” at CPAC and, “camel jockeys,” in her latest column not only because it’s offensive, but because it can only detract from the message she is trying to get across. Those words added nothing to what she had to say and were simply a distraction from her message. So, how much sense did it make to use them?
#3) I know a lot of the liberals who frequent RWN mentioned that they liked what I had to say in the comments section. All I can do about that is repeat something Reagan once said: “They endorsed me; I didn’t endorse them.”
#3) Let me say something that unfortunately, badly needs to be said to a big group of conservatives out there: Muslims are not the enemy. Let me repeat that: Muslims are not the enemy.
When you use terms like, “raghead,” and, “camel jockeys,” you’re not just spitting in the eyes of the sort of human debris that’s burning down KFC’s in Pakistan and chanting, “Death to America,” in Iran, you’re hitting our friends and allies, too, and that’s wrong.
That would seem to be obvious. After all, we’re spending God knows how much blood and treasure to help Iraq and Afghanistan become free countries and we’re not doing that because we think they’re irredeemable enemies. We’re doing it because it’s the right thing to do and because we believe that their example will help democracy and freedom spread across the Muslim world. If you really think all Muslims are bad guys, then you should consider that a waste of time.
4) What it all comes down to is that you shouldn’t lump in the radical Islamist wackos with the majority of Muslims who don’t share their views. The moderate Muslims may not speak up as often as they should, but given how the mainstream media in this country have wimped out on the Danish cartoon controversy, can you blame them? If CNN is too afraid to go up against the radical Islamists, is it any surprise that the average person out in Saudi Arabia or Jordan is scared to publicly say the radicals should go to hell? Keep that in mind because as free speech, democracy, and the rule of law become more common in Muslim countries, you’ll see a lot more moderates speaking out.