Paris, France To Sue Fox News For Being Fox News

from the you'll-get-used-to-them dept

I was told a long time ago that you can really get to know people in times of crises. Adversity doesn't make a person, it reveals that person. Insert another cliche about this stuff here. The point is that when things get dire, people revert to who they are at their most basic. In America, for instance, the home of the brave and the land of the free suddenly became the home of the surveilled and the land of security theater after 9/11. France's recent experience with the plague of Islamic extremism has revealed ups, but has also revealed them to be not nearly so in favor of free speech as they like to claim when it comes to speech they don't like. That trend appears to be continuing as Paris, France claims they are going to file a lawsuit against Fox News for making laughably ridiculous claims about so-called "Muslim-only" communities in the city.

Fox News ran multiple reports describing areas of Paris (and England) that were governed by Sharia law and off-limits to non-Muslims. The network has since apologized for making "regrettable errors on air regarding the Muslim population in Europe—particularly with regard to England and France."

"This applies especially to discussions of so-called 'no-go zones,' areas where non-Muslims allegedly aren't allowed in, and police supposedly won't go," anchor Julie Banderas said in one on-air apology. "To be clear, there is no formal designation of these zones in either country, and no credible information to support the assertion there are specific areas in these countries that exclude individuals based solely on their religion."
Oh, Paris. So naive. A cable news organization fear-mongering their way through a horrifically inaccurate report where the facts are fiction isn't something to get upset about. As best as I can tell, that's the entire point of cable news. Truth doesn't fill a twenty-four hour news cycle, after all. Beyond that, what are they going to sue for? Inaccurate reporting that has since been corrected on-air? If that was grounds for a lawsuit, the lawsuits against cable news networks would be ongoing through eternity.

Even listening to the city's officials doesn't make this seem any less petty.
Paris Mayor Anne Hidalgo is planning to sue Fox News for its inaccurate reports on Muslim "no go zones," she told CNN's Christiane Amanpour on Tuesday.

"When we're insulted, and when we've had an image, then I think we'll have to sue, I think we'll have to go to court, in order to have these words removed," Hidalgo told Amanpour in an interview. "The image of Paris has been prejudiced, and the honor of Paris has been prejudiced."
Think about this for just a moment. Filing a lawsuit against someone for the crime of insulting your honor doesn't sound like it could come from a proponent of free speech, does it? The very thing that was attacked in France is now being attacked by France, though obviously with litigious weapons instead of firearms. This isn't to suggest any moral equivalence between the two, of course, only that free speech is one of those areas where you're either for or against. Being for something with qualifications means you're not for it at all. And, fortunately for Fox News, the freedom of speech includes the freedom to be idiotically wrong.

Filed Under: anne hidalgo, cable news, fox news, france, free speech, lawsuit, paris
Companies: fox


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  1. icon
    PaulT (profile), 22 Jan 2015 @ 3:53am

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: No Go Zones are real

    "I think you are going to have to supply some evidence for that last one."

    For what? The fact that ethnic and religious minorities often have their own insular communities that don't involve outside law enforcement if they can help it? I thought this was quite obvious. To give an extreme example:

    http://www.bbc.com/news/uk-15280776

    Does that mean we should fear and ostracise all Africans, or is it not scary because "Islam" isn't mentioned as the offending religion?

    "Also when "looking after their own" includes honour killings, forced marriages and FGM then it isn't something you can just dismiss."

    Nor does it mean that they are particularly widespread or have created "no go" areas for local citizens and law enforcement.

    Do these problems exist? Yes. Are they to the extend that the known liars and exaggerated claims in your links claim? No. Unless you have actual evidence to the contrary.

    "Well I am definitely not right wing - quite the opposite - and that is one reason why I find islam a worry."

    I apologise if I made an incorrect assumption - the "right wing" comment was aimed at your choice of material, not you personally. Why is it you worry, and why does "Islam" worry you, rather than just the more fundamental aspects and the sects that commit these kinds of acts (which is not all sects)?

    "FFI is run by an ex-muslim"

    So, presumably he has some posts with first-hand experience to provide, no? Otherwise, there's little instant credibility to be had there. People who have exited from a faith are often the most rabidly, obnoxiously and one-sided against it (see anti-theist comments from ex-Christians, for example - there may be truth but it's often not balanced).

    Either way, I do notice that it's third hand comments you're posting rather than any real facts. Even if FFI is a more reliable source than it first appears, there's no first hand evidence available in what you linked to.

    "while many of the contributors seem to be american right wingers there are also many people of other political persuasions contributing"

    Regardless, the link you posted was an American right-winger quoting known xenophobes with no corroborating evidence. His credentials are suspect, as are those of the people he quoted. Hell, he doesn't even provide a link to any of his quotes, so who knows if they were actually said and in what context, even if the source was trustworthy (and, believe me, Nigel Farage is not trustworthy)? If you have a link to a similar claim from the ex-Muslim owner of the blog, please provide it, else his credentials aren't really relevant.

    I also can't help but notice that of the 3 links you've provided so far to "prove" the situation in the UK, two are from foreigners who may never have visited the country, let alone examined first hand evidence, and the first was debunked merely by reading it to the end.

    I ask again, do you have any actual evidence for the claim being discussed? I'd suggest you stick to sources more toward the NSS link than the other two, but I'm unconvinced (FYI, I have decades of experience of life in the country we're discussing, so I can recognise distortion when I see it).

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