No hard questions, please
When climate activist Al Gore is confronted on his global warming claims, he melts like the icebergs he says are beginning to flood the world.
Unlike the lapdog United States media, a British reporter had a few questions for him about claims made in his recently released film, "An Inconvenient Sequel."
Ross Clark of The Spectator asked about a scene in the film that "cuts from Gore on his melting glacier to a flooded street in Miami Beach, with a voice-over from Gore making a strong connection between the two."
"Are you a denier?" asked Gore. When Clark tried to finish his question, Gore again asked, "Are you a denier?"
Clark had asked Florida International University sea level expert Shimon Wdowinski about global warming's potential impact on sea levels. Wdowinski said glacial melting could impact sea level rise, but any recent surge in Miami sea levels was more to do with "short-term variability caused by changes in ocean currents."
When the reporter tried to ask Gore about Wdowinski's statement, Gore said, "Never heard of him. Is he a denier?"
The film screening folks weren't happy with Clark, either. A public relations flak told him the event was "a film junket, to promote the film," not a place to ask hard questions.
However, climate claims deserve hard questions, not media lapdog repetition.
Is that the best they've got?
The oldest abortion advocacy group in the United States claimed last week pro-life organizations have "close ties" to the white supremacists who were part of the recent violence in Charlottesville, Va.
The National Abortion and Reproductive Rights Action League (NARAL) made the link because white nationalist Matthew Heimbach, who had helped organize and participated in the Charlottesville rally, had simply suggested in a Twitter post earlier this year that people should become "a part of the national 40 Days for Life campaign," which offers "the truth about abortion, abortion providers, and the pro-Life message to a national audience."
Thus, concluded NARAL, with the intelligence of a sixth-grade argument, "it should be no surprise why white supremacists promote #antichoice policies. They disproportionately harm women of color." The organization additionally tweeted that white supremacists and anti-abortion advocates "both want to control women's bodies."
March for Life President Jeanne Mancini answered the ridiculous claims with a tweet that noted the pro-life movement is about "the inherent dignity of every person regardless of race, creed, disability, politics, etc." and "is against all violence from the womb to the grave." The foundation of the "movement," she said, "is love."
Get a real argument
The National Abortion and Reproductive Rights Action League isn't the only one attempting to make playground comparisons these days. Hillary Clinton's 2016 campaign spokesman and others are attempting to tie so-called "alt-left" Charlottesville, Va., counterprotesters to soldiers who liberated Europe in World War II.
On a Twitter post, Brian Fallon included a photograph of soldiers coming ashore on the beaches of Normandy, France, on June 6, 1944, and said, "Also confronted the Nazis without a permit."
The "alt-left" movement, whose violence is no better than thuggery of the so-called "alt-right," could only dream of such comparisons to the brave men who sacrificed their lives for freedom, not a government-controlled state the left desires.
But fans of the "alt-left" apparently hope to make the comparison stick.
Jeffrey Goldberg, editor of The Atlantic, tweeted, "Watching 'Saving Private Ryan,' a movie about a group of very aggressive alt-left protesters invading a beach without a permit."
Similarly, John Hendrickson posted a photograph of elder former liberator soldiers and said, "'Alt-left thugs' who battled Nazis."
People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA) has avoided a trial and settled a court case after a rather unethical 2014 incident in which two of its members picked up a 9-year-old Virginia girl's chihuahua and euthanized it without waiting for a state-mandated five-day grace period to expire.
The settlement forced PETA to pay the family almost $49,000, donate $2,000 to a local branch of the Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals in honor of the dog, and apologize.
PETA said it had been asked by a mobile home park owner to help pick up wild dogs and feral cats. Its members found unattended Maya, a Christmas present for Cynthia Zarate, at the family's home. After it took the dog, it put the animal down the same day, which drew the organization a $500 fine for violating state law. The Zarate family sued, saying the organization "considers pet ownership to be a form of involuntary bondage."
The organization initially called the incident a "terrible accident."
PETA's apology said, in part, "PETA again apologizes and expresses its regrets to the Zarate family for the loss of their dog Maya."