Here we have yet another journalism FAIL. WTVF-5 in Nashville teased a report that supposedly would link a local Muslim group with terrorism … then finally aired it, and the result was that there was no apparent connection (WebCite cached version). However, some viewers — apparently of the Christian persuasion — didn’t actually catch that last part, and they reacted as one would expect a bunch of outraged, sanctimonious, hyperreligious nutjobs to react, as the Nashville Scene blog reports (WebCite cached article):

After Sensationalized TV Report, Vandals Strike Nashville Mosque

Vandals spray-painted insults on a mosque overnight and left a hate-filled letter to Nashville’s Muslims. Islamic leaders blame Channel 5’s sensationalized two-night report about a crackpot organization’s unfounded accusations of terrorist ties against a Middle Tennessee Muslim community.

“Muslims Go Home” and a Crusade-style cross were scrawled across the front of Al-Farooq Islamic Center on Nolensville Road, says Salaad Nur, a spokesman. He says the mosque, which primarily serves members of the Somali community, has contacted the police and the FBI.

But that isn’t all the vandals did:

“They also left a letter at the youth center that says Muslims are friends of Satan and we are here to destroy the United States and to destroy Israel and things of that nature,” he says. “We’re a little bit shaken up. I hope this is just a scare and things don’t get any worse than this.”

According to successive updates of this blog entry, neither Channel 5 nor the other local TV stations have done much to acknowledge the possibility of a connection between this report and the vandalism. Hmm. I wonder why?

Note to Christians: The Crusades ended centuries ago. The successive campaigns against “the Saracen” are long over. Not all Muslims are terrorists trying to wipe out you, or Christianity, or Israel. Some of them — really! — just want to live their lives in peace. (Yeah, I know about Islam being “the Religion of Peace” and all that … but still, while some are terrorists, not all are.) Just stop it already. OK?

Hat tip: Romenesko blog at Poynter Online.

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