2006/06/09

Ann Coulter's question

Yeesh! I need to disinfect after slogging through the muck and the mire of reading right-wing partisans attacking the Jersey Girls, four women from New Jersey who have very serious questions about 9-11 and who have publicly asked why their husbands died in the conflagration of the World Trade Center towers 1 & 2 on that day.

First off, let's look at one of Ann Coulter's statements on them:

COULTER [video clip]: Why can't we hear these half-baked liberal bromides from Howard Dean? Why do liberals always choose spokesmen like the "Jersey Girls," like Cindy Sheehan, like Joe Wilson, who, because of some personal aspect of their life, we are not allowed to respond.

To begin with, pro-Bush Administration people ARE allowed to respond. It's just that we owe these women and Joe Wilson a fair hearing, we can't simply say "Oh, pish tosh. Poor silly women, you know not whereof you speak." and wave them away. Their criticisms should be taken seriously and discussed in a serious manner. The problem for the right wing is that the criticisms made by the Jersey Girls are thoroughly legitimate and are not easily answered. Before September 11, it was thoroughly routine for jet fighters to go up and check out anything happening in the air that didn't seem right. For a plane to be a half of a degree off course or for a pilot to not answer a radio call, was reason enough to scramble jets and get them up there. The hijacked planes on 9-11 starting going off course around 8:30 and didn't start crashing into the twin towers until around a half-hour later. There was no sign of any fighter planes in the sky. The Jersey Girls have asked "Why not?" No satisfactory answer has been supplied nearly five years later.

Why can't we send Howard Dean or some other spokesperson without an emotional stake in the issue to speak for us? Not our fault that the media only heeds certain spokespeople. Not our fault that Democrats don't want to take the risk of being seen as conspiracy theorists. We'd be happy to take the heat for them. We have zero problems with being their lightning rods and taking some grief for views they dare not express themselves. I attended the 9-11 Truth Convergence and I feel that we have nothing to be embarrassed about in terms of the quality of the speakers we can present.

As to the purely ad hominem attacks launched by the right wing partisans (Nowhere in the Media Matters quotations are there any hints of substantiative policy questions or disagreements. If anyone has come across any substantiative disagreements, please let me know.) the charge has been made that the Jersey Girls are seeking to make money off of the deaths of their loved ones in the WTC towers. Consider the comments on the 9-11 compensation fund:

Leslie Dimmling of Garden City, who lost her husband, Bill, said she feels many in the public have lost sight of the fund's original purpose.
"The victims' families never asked for this money," she said. "This is not free money. This is money given in lieu of giving up the right to sue."
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"The reason I opted out of the fund and chose to litigate was because 9/11 represented a massive failure and there was no avenue for accountability," said Monica Gabrielle of Manhattan, who lost her husband, Richard, an insurance broker.

Gabrielle said the Sept. 11 Commission has been a disappointment. "I have a legal right to litigate to find out where the responsibility lies," she said. "If that means people are fired, if it means a financial penalty, so be it."

The Jersey Girls could have made a great deal more money if they had remained quiet. That they did not is their right as US citizens "to petition the Government for a redress of grievances". In other words, in order to "petition the government", i.e. to put pressure on the various 9-11 commissions to seriously and truthfully examine the evidence, they had to give up lots and lots in compensation. In stark contrast to the charges of the partisans, the Jersey Girls made the less profitable choice, a choice that has opened them to wildly irresponsible attacks.

For more on 9-11, see an excellent overview (Quite lengthy at 74 kilobytes), or check out 911Truth.org

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