I knew Bill O’Reilly was an ass. I knew Fox News was an exercise in excessive partisanship. But I have never seen something that stunned me, almost literally stunned me, like this.
Notice the way the presenter, E. D. Hill, just drops the “terrorist fist-jab” comment into the mix, unsourced and unexplained, putting it on-par with “fist bump” and “pound” as a potential description of the gesture.
Doing a little scouting suggests commentator Cal Thomas as the source. Writing a few days before, he describes it as “Hezbollah-style fist-jabbing”. Where he retrieved this peculiar notion from is more difficult to find out. It would be fair to say that Thomas is closer to Fox than Obama on most things. In fact that would be very like saying that your face is closer to your hand than it is to the moon. All things considered, definitely a fair and balanced kinda guy. And I believe his use of commas is very reminiscient of Adolf Hitler’s usage. Also he breathes air. 100 per cent of serial killers breathed air.
The host of US Deal or No Deal gives every guest a “pound” regularly in plain view on-air. Ice hockey players skate past their bench pounding each man’s fist in turn when they score a goal. A 2007 Budweiser advert during the SuperBowl featured the gesture, they do it all the time in basketball, American football, baseball, it’s seen on the golf course, it’s unavoidable in America’s schools and colleges among students of all races and backgrounds, it’s been around long enough for forty-something Obamas to know it well. It’s well-known and well-ingrained among people all over the world. Here in Ireland it’s well known, the people I know from college, the people I work with, my girlfriend – it isn’t universal (of course) but it is common.
Someone says “pound it” and offers you a fist. You wouldn’t (even in a fit) think “oh this is kind of terroristy.” If anything you’d think “This is slightly American pop-cultural. The kind of thing those terrorists so dislike.” and then you’d think “Wow, I really overthink simple events in my daily life”.
Bottom line: Fox are demented and scarily zealous in their desire to demonise Barack Obama. Discount all their pronouncements accordingly. Reject the wider attempt to create a suspicion of Obama as a double agent for America’s enemies, I’m serious, read this.