Saturday, December 24, 2005

UUSC should retract.... (should I nail the rest on a door in Boston?)

The Unitarian Universalist Service Committee's Human Rights Weblog wrote the Problems in American Democracy and what they cited was the tale of the college kid getting the visit from the FBI for checking out Mao's Book.

It's the only thing UUSC cited in this frightening post. They ought to apologize for it because now the kid admits it's all a hoax.

It's sad we Unitarian Universalist (not too mention Sen Kennedy who referenced this case in an editorial) we're so quick to disregard the FBI's and Homeland security's statements on this case and rushed to a pretty harsh post about threats to America's liberties.

Jonathan Saltzman writing in the Globe today tells us that,

A Homeland Security spokeswoman in Washington said she had no record of any interview of a UMass-Dartmouth student and pointed out that the department does not have its own agents. An FBI spokeswoman in Boston also expressed doubt.

That didn't stop it from buzzing around the Internet and even being picked up by Kennedy, who cited it as the latest example of the Bush administration's intrusion on civil liberties.

''Incredibly, we are now in an era where reading a controversial book may be evidence of a link to terrorist," he wrote in an op-ed piece in Thursday's Globe.

Laura Capps, a Kennedy spokeswoman, said last night that the senator cited ''public reports" in his opinion piece. Even if the assertion was a hoax, she said, it did not detract from Kennedy's broader point that the Bush administration has gone too far in engaging in surveillance.
The Church sure seems to be getting yanked into the Democratic Party's rhetoric about Alito being the jack-booted thug, and Patriot Act's looming authoritarianism without out much reference to facts, and the reality of a few years experience with the Patriot Act.

A few calls to the FBI and Homeland security by UUSC would sure have helped avoid a post where the only fact referenced is a bald lie.

One reason for keeping some distance between Church and State is politicians can sure bamboozle the Church sometimes.

You wonder who UUSC is talking too to arrive at these conclusions because they're certainly not talking too --or at least believing or even willing to quote-- people who knew some facts about what the FBI or Homeland Security had not done.

This is a problem for our Faith and Church.

Hat Tip to MediaNation's Little red faces

UPDATED here

1 comment:

John Ruberry said...

Great find, I'm going to drop by the Unitarians' site