Reza Aslan is the author of Zealot: The Life and Times of Jesus of Nazareth. He’s also a religious scholar who’s fluent in biblical Greek, and possesses multiple degrees, including a Ph.D. in the history of religions.
But when he appeared on Fox News to discuss his book, all host Lauren Green could talk about was that Aslan identified personally as a Muslim, and OH, MY GOD, WHY WOULD A MUSLIM EVER WRITE A BOOK ABOUT JESUS?!
It was as if Aslan’s personal religion was so all-defining, so all-consuming that it immediately voided any other characteristic or interest he may have had, or achievement he may have accomplished.
The video’s already gone viral, and the good that’s come of it is the public commentary, which is a pretty strong mix of outrage and comedy. Here are some of the most memorable.
There were the efficient:
He said, "I am an expert with a Ph.D."
She heard, "I am Al-Qaeda."
You know, when I wrote my book about the making of "Godspell" as a film, all of a sudden I was getting contacted by people right and left in the media. Not FOX, thank God, but a lot of people. Who were suddenly asking me things like, "Where do you, as a Jewish gay person, come off writing about our Lord when He completely condemned your lifestyle in the Bible?" I simply replied, "First of all, no, He didn't. Second of all, He was Jewish. Third of all, it's not a lifestyle, because that means it's a choice, and it is NOT a choice. We're born this way. Finally, I wrote it from a perspective of film history, which is my chosen field. I never once mentioned your Lord, unless your Lord is Victor Garber. Who is also Jewish. And gay, as it happens. Next question?"
Just started my new library: books Fox News hates.
And of course all that press attention gave way to its own hashtag, #foxnewslitcrit.
Let the games begin….
Are you a botanist, Mr. Dahl? What qualifies you to classify the peach as 'giant'? #foxnewslitcrit
— Michelle O'Brien (@Wolf_six) July 28, 2013
"Ms Rowling, how can you, as a mudblood, write about Wizards?" #foxnewslitcrit
— Zarrar Khuhro (@ZarrarKhuhro) July 28, 2013
"Now now Dr. King, have you ever actually BEEN to the mountaintop?" #foxnewslitcrit
— Zaid Jilani (@ZaidJilani) July 28, 2013
"Mr. Orwell, how can we take your book seriously if you clearly have never had any NSA experience?" #foxnewslitcrit
— Omar Lizardo (@omar_lizardo) July 28, 2013
Ms. Shelley, we demand to know where you got your degree in biology. #foxnewslitcrit
— Amanda Marcotte (@AmandaMarcotte) July 28, 2013
Mr. Alighieri, have you ever actually spent a single minute in Hell? #foxnewslitcrit
— Frank Spring (@frankspring) July 28, 2013
Makes me wonder if Tolkien ever went to Middle Earth now. #foxnewslitcrit
— Abbo (@abbomusic) July 28, 2013
Have YOU ever actually killed a mockingbird, Ms. Lee???? #FoxNewsLitCrit
— Blair Maury (@nightoatmeal) July 28, 2013
— Ask Me Margaret (@askmemargaret) July 28, 2013
Mr. Degrasse Tyson, you don't seem to be a star, so how can you write a book on space? #foxnewslitcrit
— Alex Hanna (@alexhanna) July 28, 2013
Related stories on TakePart:
Original source: takepart.com