A very worrying aspect of our society is that we never learn from our past mistakes and this is perfectly illustrated by the way people changed their opinions and morals following the September 11th attacks. Howard Stern is a perfect example of how people, famous or otherwise, became odiously jingoistic following 9/11, in fact his stance which became obvious only a few minutes after the second plane collided with the World Trade Center, is simultaneously dumbfounding and yet also indicative of the way many Americans changed that morning.
If you cast your mind back to the late twentieth century, the further we progressed, the further we seemed to get away from archaic prejudiced ideas. By the 90s, as a society, the majority of us saw the wrongs of illegal and unnecessary wars, nuclear bombs, internment camps, apartheid, not to mention xenophobia and religious intolerance. And yet as the second plane flew into the South Tower, it was almost like a switch flicked off in people’s minds. Once the Twin Towers miraculously began collapsing in on themselves, a large section of the population instantly forgot about their opinions they held only an hour previously.
Howard Stern’s radio show which was broadcasting that day, is a great example of how people began to quickly normalise prejudice and bigotry. You can find the audio of Stern’s 9/11 broadcast online, it runs for many hours but I’ll break down what was said during the first 20 minutes following the attack, just so you can get a taste of the hatred. Now I’ll start by pointing out that I don’t know the names of the guests or some of the people on the phone, but I can distinguish what Howard Stern, his co-host Robin Quivers, and his contributor Joey Boots said.
The show began as usual with Stern talking nonsense, that day he was gossiping about Pamela Anderson, but then news breaks that a “plane has crashed into the World Trade Center”. At first Howard’s guest asks “what kind of plane?” but almost within seconds someone says “I hope it wasn’t one of those terrorist kamikaze attacks”, how and why would you even think that? “One of those”? How many have there been lately?
The group then begin laughing about how you can’t get “a ladder that high”, they then move back to how Stern “never banged Pam Anderson” – much more important than people dying in a disaster I guess. Then the second plane strikes and someone says it “looks like a movie special effect”. Then someone adds “that’s like a [sic] Oklahoma city hole in the building” – a strange thing to say considering there’s no bombs involved although one of his guests does say “We’re told it was a plane but what we saw was just an explosion”. Stern pipes up; “We’re under attack!” “it’s war!”. “It’s the Japanese” someone jokes to which Howard Stern replies “this is Pearl Harbour” (oh the irony). Robin Quivers then says “we gotta bomb everything over there now”. Remember, nobody has said who is responsible or where they’re from, “over there” is where exactly? After another utterance of “We gotta bomb the hell out of them” Stern adds “you know who it is, we can’t say, but I know who it is” he then inserts a joke; “this is more upsetting than me not getting Pamela Anderson”. Stern then adds that it’s a “suicide mission” before declaring “we’re at war” once again.
Joey Boots, an overweight, hate-filled contributor is then brought in over the telephone and he reports a “third explosion”. Almost immediately he says “this is them towel head bastards!” – badly phrased racism from a noo yawker, how post-millennial. “We don’t know who it is” responds Quivers, “I gotta feeling” says Stern. Boots goes on; “it’s about time we take these towel head bastards and throw them out of the god-damn country”. “How do you combat this though?” says a guest, a solitary sane question to the problem of suicide attacks. Quivers responds in her typical Reaganist way; “You know how, Reagan stopped them”, she adds “we know where these people are”. Joey Boots then interjects; “we need to send cruise missiles over there right now, start bombing the hell out of them”. Again, where’s “there” and who’s “them”?
When the topic of innocent civilians comes up Joey Boots answers “The innocent civilians shouldn’t be living next to them” – what great logic. It takes approximately 15 minutes from the report of the attack to Howard Stern suddenly mentioning “Bin Laden… or whatever his name is” – wow, what great investigatory powers. 2 minutes later and Quivers mentions that it’s “Primary Day” and that “Mayor Giuliani should stay in office”. Boots then goes back to his “these towel heads” crap once again and adds “we let them come over here, a lot of them are here illegally”, Stern adds “We’re letting everyone in here illegally”. 20 minutes in and someone says in reference to the World Trade; “that probably won’t be part of New York’s skyline any more”.
So let’s recap, within 20 minutes from the first report of a plane colliding with a skyscraper, Howard Stern and his gang have deduced that it’s Bin Laden and other assorted “towel heads” who are responsible, that George Bush should commence missile attacks immediately, that New York should start to kiss Rudy Giuliani’s arse, that we should sort immigration out, and that the towers will collapse – all within 20 minutes! Does that not seem a bit too quick to you? The shit was almost like a script to get the public thinking the same way. Almost every prejudiced idea we have had to endure for over a decade was spawned during that moment and people like Stern helped proselytise Americans into being xenophobic, openly Islamophobic, and pro-war.
Stern then goes on, he says “Israel would take care of the problem for us but we’re now all of a sudden worried about how the P.L.O. feels”. He adds “Israelis could kill everyone over there” making an attack on the United States from a few alleged terrorists into a conflict between the West and the East, Israeli Jews versus Middle Eastern Muslims. I mean how do you get to all-out war when a group of morons have allegedly hi-jacked four planes? It’s not a sovereign nation that’s attacked you. The point at which Howard Stern says “The Arab world needs to be taught a lesson, that you are our dogs” I switched that bullshit off. I can only assume the hatred increases from that point onward.
This final statement from Stern brings me neatly to the fact that this lanky cunt is also staunchly Pro-Israel, once saying that “if you’re anti-Israel, you’re anti-America”. Following 9/11, this opinion became something that went hand-in-hand with Islamophobia; unflinching support for Israel’s government. On a side note, it’s a strange situation that people who could see that the apartheid in South Africa was wrong back in the 80s and 90s, all of a sudden in the 00s couldn’t see that the situation in Palestine is exactly the same, it’s apartheid plain and simple. Because we began accepting the demonising of all Muslims due of the actions of a few, we also began to stop criticising the wrongdoings of Israel against its Muslim population, because, you know, Zionists are preferable to all Muslims. People who muddle up Zionists with Jews and act like all Jews agree with the Israeli government are only adding fuel to the fire. This statement by Howard Stern is very misleading, you can be pro-Jewish and anti-Israel just like you can be pro-Muslim and anti-Taliban, people who conflate the issue of anti-Semitism with anti-Israeli sentiment are usually goading the public into accepting wrongdoing. It’s very telling that those who supported illegal wars and military strikes on innocent civilians following 9/11 are also staunchly pro-Israeli, and no that’s not the same as being pro-Jewish. But I digress.
Now you could say that having a prejudiced opinion on the actual day of 9/11 when the attacks were taking place, was acceptable. People could argue that to be reactionary and hateful during the attack itself is okay, I don’t agree with that but I can at least buy that as a somewhat viable excuse. Howard Stern however wasn’t just Islamophobic on September 11th, he has continued his bigotry for years to come. His skewed opinion which was birthed on 9/11 later morphed into wanting to “nuke Iran” and other general xenophobia, jingoism, and Islamophobia.
Since his infamous 9/11 radio show, Stern has aired his confused stance on Islam and terrorism numerous times, pontificating like the dumb, xenophobic, old white man that he is. In 2010, a news report of a case of Islamophobia was brought up on his show, specifically a Quran being burnt and covered in faeces on the anniversary of 9/11 in East Lansing, Michigan, a hate crime I’ll point out. Stern instantly begins deflecting from the news story at hand and says “You know what it is? People are just really upset about that mosque being built right on, you know, right next to where it, you know? 9/11, Twin Towers went down”. Great distraction there Howard, what does a hate crime in Michigan have to with the so-called Ground Zero mosque? He adds “people can’t take it any more” he follows this with a snide jab at Muslims saying “and everyone gets that you know, not everyone’s a fanatic, there are moderates… we just don’t know any”. Wow, nobody knows any “moderate Muslims”? Well maybe if you weren’t cooped-up in a studio with a group of bigoted yes-men you’d get to know a few. Stern then completely ignores the story, you know, the hate crime in Michigan?
He then begins ranting about how if he was the President he “would have solved the problem”. He says “I would have pushed the button, I’d make Hiroshima look like a party. I mean the Middle East would essentially be one flat, and, and, we’d have no more problems. The problem would just be eradicated.” He goes on “I can tell you how to solve the problem; eradicate them like rats”. Remember, the subject on his show was the Quran being burnt in Michigan but instead Howard Stern is pissing and moaning about 9/11 again, nine years after the event. He then adds the idiotic “up until 9/11 I never even heard the word Imam, I couldn’t give a shit about Imams, I don’t know anything about Imam” then Robin Quivers his sidekick takes over stating “Meanwhile I had the wildest cab driver since the last cab driver I had. Remember I had a cab driver who told me I was going to die because I was an infidel? This was before 9/11, you know ’cause a lot of these guys were driving cabs”. These guys? You mean Muslims, Islamic fundamentalists, terrorist sympathisers or terrorists? Apparently they’re all the same. She goes on “This guy said, you know, he had on his Muslim music playing and I’m in the cab and he says ha ha ha ha, you’re going to die, and I was like excuse me? He said…” she puts on weird accent “…you’re going to die and burn in hell because you’re the infidel and I said that’s very nice, thank you, now could you just drive without talking?”. So before 9/11, Quivers encountered not one but two Islamic extremist taxi drivers? Mmm, sounds believable. But okay, even if this were true, remember, the topic that day was an Islamophobic hate crime! This tactic of changing the subject from prejudice to excusing the prejudice is exactly why Islamophobia thrives in contemporary society. If anybody brings up a case of xenophobia or racism, if a Muslim is involved some moron will yell “9/11!” as though that makes it all okay.
Another reason Islamophobia has thrived and continues to thrive is because there’s no culpability for being Islamophobic after September 11th. From politics, comedy, film, music, you can pretty much say what you like about Islam and it gets brushed under the rug. Hating Muslims is 21st Century’s accepted prejudice like hating all German or Japanese people following the second World War. Just like author and cartoonist Dr. Seuss who was very anti-Japanese during his life but who later apologised for having prejudiced opinions, twenty or forty years from now there’ll be a swath of celebrities apologising for the way they acted following the 9/11 attacks. The problem with this is that all the people affected by unnecessary hatred never get any reparations, instead these “ex” bigoted famous guys get to wipe away their historic prejudice with a solitary “I’m sorry” and the world accepts them as some kind of loveable celeb.
On the same 2010 broadcast, Howard Stern also generalises everywhere from south Asia to the the Middle East as one big place filled with evil Muslims and oil. When talking about Afghanistan and Pakistan he begins harping on about “oil money”, he says that we (we being the U.S. of course) should “Go over [there] and grab the oil for free. Fuck ’em! Fuck ’em! Take it, take it, we’re Americans, God love America, just take their resources.” Sounds very much like Donald Trump‘s idiotic comments about ISIS and how the United States should take their oil but for some reason one of these people is derided on a daily basis and the other gets away without any criticism whatsoever. Seems fair… not.
On another side issue, it’s so annoying that we’re constantly told how “liberal” the media is, what a crock of shite. I mean this so-called liberal shock jock spurts out almost constant Islamophobia with his House Negro Robin Quivers in tow and everybody forgets about it, nobody ever brings it up. Muslim celebrities don’t even give a fuck, Stern has interviewed the alleged Muslim Mike Tyson but Stern’s prejudiced comments are never brought up by Tyson or Stern. Considering what Howard Stern has said about Muslims, I would have expected an ex-boxer to at the very least talk tough on the subject or maybe bite his ear, but like I said, nobody calls this fucker out on his Islamophobia, not even a frigging Muslim!
This scrawny twat with a bird’s nest on his noggin is a walking, talking, broadcasting tit (quite apt really considering his hair-do resembles a long-tailed tit’s nest). It’s funny that Stern is respected by the liberal left and yet he spouts off worse than Bill O’Reilly and Rush Limbaugh. How did this dickhead whose hair-do looks like Phil Spector in court get to be so liked by the nation? How do you go from asking Porn stars to ride a Sybian on air to yelling about brown people on air to becoming the judge of a talent show with dodgy hair? That’s a weird fucking trajectory of fakery and bullshit.
Stern was a judge on America’s Got Talent, a family show. A selection of the guests and audience on this programme if Stern had his way, would be nuked off the face of the earth following an epic conflict with all of the Middle East and south Asia. Stern sits there and presides over Americans, a percentage of which who are Muslims, and yet they kiss his arse and he acts like he never said anything Islamophobic. What a great liberal cover-up.
The moulding of Stern’s public persona began with his overrated biopic-slash-comedy Private Parts which coincidentally I also switched off after 20 minutes. That’s about all I can take of this self-righteous twat. Who wants to sit down and view a shite flick trying to paint this arsewipe as some kind of revolutionary anarchist? As far as I can tell, this bastard child of Tiny Tim and Sara Gilbert’s biggest achievement was a lame spandex-clad character named Fartman, wow what a comedic genius.
As Stern says in his narcissistic film Private Parts, all his life people have called him a moron, I guess if that film had been made today, they’d have to call him a prejudiced moron. If you add all the bullshit he’s said since 9/11 to his biography you can no longer look at this prick as some kind of admirable and lovable DJ.
Back to the subject of warmongering and militarism, just like Frank Miller and Bill Maher, it seems that only rich, old, white male celebrities want to see military action (conveniently those that never see action themselves). Howard Stern’s father might have served in the US Army and his sellout co-host Robin Quivers might have been in the US Air Force but it’s Stern who acts oh so gung-ho and pro-war.
People who speak so easily about military action, oblivious of the innocent lives lost on both sides, are usually puss-weeds who sit in their comfortable surroundings and talk tough. If they had to enlist and go into combat themselves, these weaklings would change their mind quicker than you could say “deployment”. If Howard Stern is so “for” military action in the Middle East, why doesn’t the wizened cunt tuck his Jew-fro into a combat helmet and get his wrinkled arse over there? “There” being wherever the Islamic-fuck he wants “nuked” today, preferably with him in the epicentre of the predicted impact point.