- The Washington Times - Wednesday, October 10, 2001

Allah and Oprah
"Is Oprah Winfrey a threat to national security? No, but now that the war has begun, I worry about her, and here's why.
"The nation cannot afford the naive illusions that have given many Americans comfort in peacetime. Chief among them is the notion, repeated ad nauseam by our leaders and the media, that Islam is a religion of peace. This may not be an outright lie, but it is so far from the full truth as to approach falsehood.
"We can sit around making diversity quilts and thinking happy thoughts, or we can, with charity, commit ourselves to soberly assessing the historical and present-day reality of 'peaceful' Islam, and its relations with non-Muslims.
"Which brings us to Oprah. Last Friday, she devoted her program to 'Islam 101,' purportedly a crash course in the Mohammadan faith for her vast television audience of clueless Americans. It was grossly imbalanced and extremely dishonest. In fact, given how many Christians and other non-Muslims are horrifically persecuted today by Muslims in the name of Islam, it amounted to offensive propaganda.
"Oprah called Islam 'the most misunderstood of the three major religions' yet did her best to add to the confusion by candy-coating the complicated truth about the Muslim faith. If you were to take Oprah's show as your guide to Islam, you would think Muslims were basically Episcopalians in veils and turbans."
Rod Dreher, writing on "Islam According to Oprah," Monday in National Review Online at www.nationalreview.com

Hairless and sensitive
"Just prior to the new day of infamy, the Wall Street Journal ran a front-page piece on a new trend for men: hairless chests. Now men covet the smooth, silky look. Male models are told to show up with hairless torsos. Imagine Ulysses Grant, Ike, or Douglas MacArthur booking some tanning bed time and a chest wax.
"I miss real men. Marshal Dillon men. Men with hair on their chests and in their ears. Men like Eliot Ness. Sensitive man is king, or head of an autonomous collective, as sensitive man would say.
"Sensitive man is warm, politically correct and passive, much like Mr. Rogers. Never a cross word. Gleeful in his patience with childhood tutorials.
"But, I don't trust sensitive man."
Marianne M. Jennings, writing on "Sensitive Men Need Not Apply," an Oct. 4 column in Accuracy in Media at www.aim.org

Save the people
"The Great Plains are a wreck. In a northward swath from western Kansas to eastern Montana, birth rates have plunged, towns are dying, schools and stores are closing. The landscape is dotted with empty farmhouses, broken fences, and boarded-up churches, the paint peeling in the relentless prairie wind. The plains, of course, have always been unforgiving, but this is new.
"Today, 250,000 commercially raised buffalo roam the plains. They don't need the attention of veterinarians as much as cattle, and they don't need to be feedlot-marketed. Some of these buffalo are merely the playthings of the wealthy; Ted Turner owns massive herds, for example. The rest are owned by environmentally conscious and entrepreneurially minded ranchers tired of long days and financial struggle.
"To attract settlers to the emptied plains, 160-acre homestead tracts were offered by the government for the price of a small filing fee.
"The consequent land rush populated the Great Plains with thousands of immigrants, mostly from northern Europe.
"The cattle culture of the Great Plains has remained this same kind of boom-bust, government-subsidized crapshoot for over a century."
Bill Croke, writing on "Home on the Range," in the Oct. 15 issue of the Weekly Standard

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