Jane Furse of the New York Daily News reports "Iconic White House reporter Helen Thomas was dropped by her speaking agency and booted as a high school commencement speaker Sunday following inflammatory remarks she made about Jews and Israel." The tone was daintier at The Washington Post, where she wasn't "booted," the agreement was mutual:
Alan Goodwin, principal of [Walt] Whitman [High School], where objections to the appearance had been raised, said he reached a niece of Thomas's earlier in the day. "We had a mutual understanding about her not coming," he said....
In an interview, Whitman parent Raisa Slepoy said, "I don't know why anybody would ask a person like that to speak at a commencement ceremony...especially where there's a pretty large Jewish population."
If Thomas had appeared, Slepoy said, there would "be a lot of people booing her off the stage....It would be an embarrassment."
The remarks have "already stirred up the community quite a bit," Slepoy said, bringing up "bad feelings." Germany, she said, is not a Jewish homeland.
There was chatter about a Facebook campaign against a Thomas graduation speech. At The Corner at NRO, Jonah Goldberg has no patience with the Helen Thomas scandal -- because he insists it's odd for liberals to suddenly discover Thomas is mean-spirited and has these repellent views:
If there was a rightwinger who'd spouted so much bile, hate and ideological agenda-driven nonsense in the White House briefing room for half a century it would be...oh wait, no such person would have ever been allowed to become a Washington "institution" in the first place. According to the media graybeards, it's always been a sign of seriousness and unwavering truth-seeking for reporters to attack from the left (c.f. Dan Rather, Daniel Schorr et al).
See? She's not biased she asks Obama and Clinton tough questions too! Yes, from the hard, loony, left.
All of these condemnations, equivocations, repudiations and protestations are all fundamentally silly because they are part of a DC Kabuki that treats the last straw as if it was wholly different than the million other straws everyone was happy to carry.
Suddenly, all of these people and groups are stunned to discover that Helen Thomas is...Helen Thomas. Feh.