Host Of Show Named After Genocidal Political Faction Continues To Demand Redskins Name Change

Joel Reed Lecturer, Texas A&M
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Liberals’ double standards on political correctness may truly know no bounds. Whether it is the left-wing blogosphere’s robust defense of Alec Baldwin after he launched into an anti-gay rant on Twitter, or the seemingly endless string of impolitic comments which flow from Vice President Joe Biden, it is clear that there are different PC restrictions for anyone on a Barack Obama donor list than there are for the rest of us.

One of the most egregious violators of this double standard is left wing political commentator, Cenk Uygur.

Uygur, the founder and face of the liberal media enterprise The Young Turks — it was once a show, but was cancelled — has been vehemently demanding that the Washington Redskins change their name to something more acceptable to his former colleagues at MSNBC; presumably something like the Loraxes, or the Upper Middle Class Suburban Gay Couples.

Last week, Uygur described the president of the Navajo Nation as, “an ass” for joining Redskins owner Dan Snyder in the stands to watch the D.C. football team get walloped by the Arizona Cardinals. The only problem is that Uygur’s own media company is named after a genocidal political faction within the Ottoman Empire. In 1915, the Young Turks movement, which had recently come to power in the Ottoman Empire, engaged in the wholesale extermination of the Armenian people.

The Young Turks rounded up and arrested community leaders before luring fighting age men to meetings which became mass executions. After murdering most of the adult male population, the Young Turks marched Armenian women, children, and the elderly into the Syrian Desert where most died from heat, thirst and/or exhaustion. Marco Rubio and John McCain have been among the Republicans putting pressure on the Obama administration to officially recognize the slaughter of the Armenians as genocide (which it indisputably is).

Uygur began hurling stones from the confines of his glass house back in December when he told a story on The Young Turks about watching football with his young son and being unwilling to explain the Redskins name to the child. In June, Uygur did another special criticizing Redskins owner Daniel Snyder saying, “He’s still not convinced because he’s Daniel Snyder and he’s a jerk.” In another segment last Tuesday, Uygur asserted that the only thing Dan Snyder cares about is the money he might lose by changing his brand. The Young Turks Network has been vocal in its opposition to the Redskins name with apparently little cognitive dissonance related to being on a network named for the Caucasian equivalent of the Hitler Youth.

The Young Turks Network has been fighting their own “change the name” battle launched by Armenian-Americans who are descendants of those massacred in the first genocide of the 20th century but has so far been given a pass on their hypocrisy.

So far, the only explanation that Uygur has offered for the name The Young Turks is that he and his friends “looked it up in the dictionary” and that he works with Armenians, resorting to the time tested, “I’m not racist, I have black friends” defense. At a meeting of the California Democratic Party in 2012, Uygur described the genocide of the Armenians by borrowing some lingo typical of Holocaust deniers, describing the genocide as, “The historical situation, uh, that happened in that era.”

That the rules of civil discourse apply only to those on the right should not come as a surprise to anyone. The double standard is enshrined in the annals of political correctness. It explains why no one on the left seems to bat an eyelash when Congressman Bennie Thompson called Clarence Thomas an “Uncle Tom” or when Cher described Sarah Palin as a “dumb [c-word].”  Even the left’s patron saint of political correctness, Froma Harrop, has a reputation for describing the Tea Party as “terrorists” and recently accused Republicans of spreading Ebola by opposing Obamacare. Someone needs to dispel the myth that having an Elizabeth Warren bumper sticker means that the standards of civility no longer apply to you. It is time for The Young Turks to change the name.