Shame on CNN’s Fareed Zakaria

December 6th, 2010 10:36 AM

Yesterday Noel Sheppard reported on Fareed Zakaria's contradictory opinion on Bill Maher's understanding of politics. In addition to that post, I also found a problem with Fareed Zakaria's inteview with Bill Maher.

On Sundays I always watch CNN's Candy Crowley's "State of The Union", and "Fareed Zakaria's GPS." I watch Candy because she really is a fair, intelligent, and balanced journalist. She is one of the best out there along with Jake Tapper of ABC News, and Chris Wallace and Bret Baier of Fox News.

I watch Fareed Zakaria because he covers global news very well, and his guests are some of the most brilliant minds out there. But I was very disappointed in his show on Sunday.

As Noel pointed out, yesterday he had as a guest Bill Maher. Certainly not a brilliant mind. In fact, the opposite of that. I have no idea why Zakaria would have such a person on his show. It lowers the standards. Naturally I wouldn't expect any less than a disgusting display of bitterness and hatred cloaked in jokes from Bill Maher. Which is exactly what he did. What I have a problem with is Fareed Zakaria allowing Bill Maher to speak of Americans who are Tea Party activists as "Teabaggers." We all know that is a perverse sexual slur, yet Zakaria allowed him to say it over and over again. Not once or twice, but every time he reffered to the activists.

I wonder if Zakaria would have allowed someone to refer to black Americans as the "n" word over and over? I wonder if he would have allowed any guest to call Hispanics "wetb**ks? Would he have allowed even a comedian to call gays "fa**ots" over and over?

I think not. But slurring Tea Party activists seems to be acceptable to Zakarai.

Shame on him. Shame on CNN.

If people want a civil discourse in the news, then people like Zakarai need to lead by example, not wallow in the swamp of political muck with Bill Maher.

I imagine if any of the above examples had occurred, Zakarai would have asked the guest to refrain from using those slurs. But in the case of the Tea Party activists being slurred, Zakarai just sat there. Unacceptable.

I may not have agreed with Fareed Zakaria politically, but I respected him.

I no longer do.

When I addressed this on Twitter they said that "teabaggers" isn't nearly as bad of a slur as the "n" word or the others. But I say when are slurs prioritized? I'm not talking namecalling. I'm talking about slurring an entire group of people for who or what they are. That is what "teabaggers" does. Those who use it know how offensive it is, especially since it refers to a perverse sexual act. How is this any less offensive than other slurs? I might add that I can see people saying that it isn't that bad of a slur if they aren't talking about you.

People are free to slur. Bill Maher has made a career out of it. What angered me is that this serious news show allowed him to do it, when I know they would never have allowed other slurs, even coming from him.