Archive for Osama Bin Laden

Even OBL Admitted that Homegrown Terrorism is Un-Islamic? What the Bin Laden Letters Reveal

Posted in Feature, Loon Politics with tags , , , , , , , on June 4, 2012 by loonwatch

The United States government recently released a select few letters from a trove of Al-Qaeda documents recovered from Osama Bin Laden’s final hideaway in Abbottabad, Pakistan.  Leaving aside the obvious fact that the release of 17 documents out of thousands is nothing short of war propaganda–and ignoring the absolute vacuous nature of the political punditry that passes as “terrorism expertise” in this country–there was one gem buried in the Bin Laden letters that has gone unnoticed thus far.

In a 2010 letter from Bin Laden to “Shaykh Mahmud” (SOCOM-2012-0000015), Al-Qaeda’s leader mentions the case of Faisal Shahzad, an American Muslim of Pakistani origin who unsuccessfully attempted to detonate a car bomb in Times Square.  It is Bin Laden’s views towards Shahzad’s actions that reveal something quite noteworthy.

After the failed Times Square bombing, the cottage industry of Very Serious Terrorism Experts began warning the American people of the looming threat of “homegrown terrorism.”  A CNN article entitled Analysis: The spread of U.S. homegrown terrorism declared:

Nearly a decade ago, a group of Saudis and other men from the Middle East came to the United States to carry out the worst terrorist attack on the U.S.

Not a single one had American citizenship.

Almost nine years after the September 11 attacks, the threat of another major terror strike is still a concern, but where the threat is coming from has changed.

A growing number of American citizens and longtime residents of the United States are becoming radicalized enough by al Qaeda’s extremist ideology to kill their fellow Americans, counterterrorism officials say.

It is difficult to call this “analysis” as the title implies.  Rather, this is another case of the media operating as the government’s stenographer.  The CNN article itself quotes the Homeland Security Secretary:

“In the 9/11 world and in the immediate aftermath, the theory was and the reality was that a terrorist attack, if it were to occur again on U.S. soil, would be someone coming from abroad and coming in to the United States,” Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano said. “That paradigm has changed, and there are now individuals in the United States, some who have grown up here and are American citizens. … They haven’t done anything to violate the law, but yet they have become radicalized to the point of violent extremism and to the point of … considering coming back to the homeland and conducting an attack of some sort.”

As Stephen Colbert put it in his 2006 speech at the White House Correspondents’ Dinner (via Glenn Greenwald):

But, listen, let’s review the rules. Here’s how it works. The President makes decisions. He’s the decider. The press secretary announces those decisions, and you people of the press type those decisions down. Make, announce, type. Just put ‘em through a spell check and go home.

In this case, the government wanted to spread the idea that homegrown Islamic terrorism is the new threat, and that Al-Qaeda was now actively recruiting American citizens.  In fact, this claim was nothing new.  As early as 2007, President Barack Obama had ominously warned of Al-Qaeda recruiting in U.S. jails:

I will address the problem in our prisons, where the most disaffected and disconnected Americans are being explicitly targeted for conversion by al Qaeda and its ideological allies

Following the failed Times Square bombing in 2010, by 2011 this issue had become such a grave issue that the chairman of the House Committee on Homeland Security held Congressional hearings “on radicalization in the U.S. Muslim community” to assess the threat of homegrown terrorism.

The idea, that Americans need to fear their fellow Muslim compatriots, is very troubling from a sociological point of view.  Throughout American history, various minorities–such as Jews, Catholics, and Japanese–have been portrayed in the fifth column role.  Indeed, Islamophobes of the worst order have made a living selling books warning of the “stealth jihad” being waged by American Muslims right here in the United States.

We are told by these anti-Muslim conspiracy nuts that Islam itself permits “holy lying” (a dubious translation of the word taqiyya).  To bolster this claim, they reproduce an isolated text from a corpus attributed to the Prophet Muhammad, in which he says “war is deceit.”

I have addressed this issue numerous times in the past.  For example, when Major Nidal Hasan used his military clearance to kill U.S. soldiers, I wrote an article explaining why this was in fact strictly forbidden (haram) from an Islamic law point of view.  American Muslims must obey U.S. laws, and certainly are not permitted to harm the state or its people.

This is because the Quran–and Islam in general–affirms the importance of “covenants”, i.e. peace treaties, Visa and citizenship agreements, etc.  The Quran declares emphatically:

And fulfill every covenant.  Verily, you will be held accountable with regard to the covenants. (Quran, 17:34)

As I noted in my earlier article, “[t]he Quran does say that if the believers are being oppressed in some land, then the Muslims should come to their assistance.  But it forbids fighting against those with whom a covenant exists.”

In the case of American Muslims, they cannot aid their fellow Muslims in Iraq, Afghanistan, and elsewhere–at least not militarily or in any way that would constitute treason against the United States.  Of this, the Quran states:

If [your coreligionists] ask for your aid in religion, then you must help them, except against people with whom you have covenants with. (Quran, 8:72)

Nonetheless, right-wingers have worked Americans into a frenzy by fear-mongering about how American Muslims supposedly want to overthrow the democratic government of the United States and replace it with a “Sharia state.”  This, however, would constitute an act of treachery and treason, which is clearly proscribed in Islam.

American Muslims must constantly remind their fellow citizens of this fact, routinely reaffirming their loyalty to the country.  But, Islamophobes insist that this is just a watered down or sugar coated version of Islam, which American Muslims just try selling to Western audiences while behind the scenes they plot the downfall of the government.  To them, the Times Square would-be bomber wasn’t hijacking (or rather, carjacking) Islam, but rather, he was faithfully carrying out the commandments of Allah.

However, what the Bin Laden papers reveal is that even Osama Bin Laden–the nefarious leader of the world’s most feared Islamic extremist group–admitted that such homegrown terrorism is not proper, at least from a theological point of view.  In the 2010 letter I referenced above, Bin Laden writes to ”Shaykh Mahmud” (emphasis is mine):

Perhaps you monitored the trial of brother Faysal Shahzad. In it he was asked about the oath that he took when he got American citizenship. And he responded by saying that he lied. You should know that it is not permissible in Islam to betray trust and break a covenant. Perhaps the brother was not aware of this. Please ask the brothers in Taliban Pakistan to explain this point to their members. In one of the pictures, brother Faysal Shahzad was with commander Mahsud; please find out if Mahsud knows that getting the American citizenship requires talking an oath to not harm America. This is a very important matter because we do not want al-Mujahidin to be accused of breaking a covenant.

So, here we have even the poster boy of Islamic terrorism saying that Faisal Shahzad violated Islamic law by taking American citizenship and then harming America.  Islamophobes would be quick to dismiss these words by OBL as taqiyya (“holy lying”), but remember: these were words contained not in a public Al-Qaeda statement but in a private letter between Bin Laden and his associate.  This letter was not intended for an outside audience, and was only released by the United States government.

How then could it be a case of taqiyya?  Unless Osama Bin Laden wrote the letter in 2010 knowing that two years later the United States would raid his compound in Pakistan and then release his letter.  Those wily Islamic terrorists!

Of course, Osama Bin Laden and Al-Qaeda are anything but consistent.  Despite Bin Laden disavowing Faisal Shahzad’s actions–and recognizing the Islamic principle that prohibits such “homegrown terrorism”–Al-Qaeda’s spokesman Adam Gadahn approved of Major Nidal Hasan’s actions and called on American Muslims to to attack the United States.  One could probably find similar inconsistencies in Bin Laden’s own words.  (In fact, most of Al-Qaeda’s bread-and-butter acts of terrorism are forbidden in Islam just based on the issue of covenants and the prohibition of being treacherous–even leaving aside the more important issue of non-combatant immunity.)

It’s also true that this doesn’t mean that homegrown terrorism isn’t a major problem. (Other articles of mine point out that homegrown terrorism is highly exaggerated.)  But, the point is that even Al-Qaeda’s head honcho, Osama Bin Laden himself, admitted that Islam prohibits homegrown terrorism, even while his group encouraged it.  He conceded that Islamic law forbids breaking a covenant, treaty, or trust–that it proscribes treason and treachery. This reinforces what is well-known to real experts of Islam, which is that A-Qaeda and other Muslim terrorists aren’t following Islam at all, despite what the Islamophobes continue to claim.

Danios was the Brass Crescent Award Honorary Mention for Best Writer in 2010 and the Brass Crescent Award Winner for Best Writer in 2011.

Four Myths that Led to the NYPD’s Attack on Muslim Civil Liberties

Posted in Anti-Loons, Loon-at-large with tags , , , , , , , on February 21, 2012 by loonwatch
Daniel Tutt
Daniel Tutt

(Via IslamophobiaToday)

Four Myths that Led to the NYPD’s Attack on Muslim Civil Liberties

by Daniel Tutt, Bio

Over the last month, multiple scandals have leaked that show the extent to which the NYPD has violated the civil liberties of thousands of New York Muslims under the banner of counterterrorism efforts. Protecting the homeland must remain central in all of our policing and intelligence-gathering efforts, but it should not, and does not have to result in the alienation of hundreds of thousands of New York Muslims. Equally important, counterterrorism efforts must operate on sound and factual analysis of the threat posed by the Muslim community, and collaboration with Muslim community leaders and citizens should be a top priority.

The damage that these scandals have caused in severing the lines of trust between law enforcement and the Muslim community may be irreparable in the short term, but it is not too late for the NYPD to begin assessing the policies that led us to where we are today.

In a recently exposed white paper published by the NYPD entitled, “Radicalization in the West: The Homegrown Threat,” we find the basis of an entire philosophy of counterterrorism that operates on several myths that must be addressed.

Let’s examine each of these myths in turn.

1. Extremist Muslims have permeated New York Muslim communities. The white paper states:

“New York City has a diverse Muslim population of between 600,000 and 750,000 within a population of about 8 ½ million–about 40% of whom are foreign-born. Unfortunately, extremists who have and continue to sow the seeds of radicalization have permeated the City’s Muslim communities.”

To suggest that the Muslim community of New York is being overran with violent extremism is far from the truth. The New York Muslim community makes up an estimated 1 million people throughout the entire state. The community has incredible racial, socioeconomic, and ethnic diversity, and is very well integrated into the larger society.

The threat this community poses is similar to the threat that American Muslims pose nationwide: very little to none. Since 9/11, over 40% of the cases where criminal charges were brought upon an American Muslim for suspicion in a terrorism related case, the Muslim community was responsible for turning that individual, or individuals, over to the authorities. Muslims see counterterrorism as their duty according to recent public opinion polls, and they are more concerned about preventing terrorism then are the rest of the non-Muslim American public per capita. Don’t we want to increase this trend of Muslims serving on the front line of counterterrorism efforts? Increasing it has the dual benefit of making Muslims an integral part of the solution, and making them feel like a valued collaborator in the war on terrorism.

According to the Muslim Public Affairs Council’s comprehensive terrorism database, of the 49 Muslim domestic and foreign based plots against the U.S. since 9/11 – there were over 105 terrorist plots from non-Muslim groups and individuals – nearly 1 in 3 of these plots were turned over to the authorities by the American Muslim community.

2. A Muslim’s level of religiosity is a sign of radicalization and support for terrorism. The second myth that the document supports is the so called “conveyor belt theory” of terrorism, which argues that terrorism is based on a continuum of religiosity, where the more religious a Muslim gets, the greater likeliness they may adopt violent extremism. This is a major misnomer that has unfortunately been taught to hundreds of thousands of police and intelligence agents nationwide as exposed in a recent investigative report by Political Research Associates entitled Manufacturing the Muslim Menace.

The white paper describes the ideology that supports terrorism as “jihadi-Salafi Islam” but never defines these terms, especially what they mean for Muslims. Instead, they exaggerate what a “Salafi Muslim” is, and neglect to point out that the majority of Salafi Muslims in western Europe and in America are not in favor of using violence and are generally peaceful. It also refuses to look at competing studies of radicalization. For example, Quintan Wiktorowicz, National Security Agency Director learned in anextensive empirical research project he headed up on radicalization of Muslim youth, that there is no correlation between religiosity and a willingness to become radicalized. In other words, the more religious Muslims became, the less likely they would be to join radical movements.

Wiktorowicz insight supports what Policy Analyst Alejandro Beutel has recently discovered in his careful analysis of Osama bin-Laden’s recruitment rhetoric. In a careful analysis of the content of each lecture that bin-Laden gave, MPAC discovered that al-Qaeda’s recruiting “pitch” was overwhelmingly political/policy-oriented, not religious.

Let’s be realistic. The threat from al-Qaeda is concerning. Despite the controversial nature of his assassination, Anwar Awlaki’s death and disappearance from the scene is a welcoming sign in the ongoing recruitment that Al-Qaeda is attempting, mainly online, to American Muslims. The fact that we no longer have a charismatic, English speaking figurehead of al-Qaeda to brainwash American Muslims to commit acts of violence is a great thing. Awlaki’s model seemed to be fairly effective in turning about two-dozen American Muslims towards a commitment to violent radicalization against the west andAmerica in particular. Importantly, this was happening in anonymous chat rooms online, not in mosques, or mainstream religious institutions in America.

3. Profiling Muslims is possible and necessary. The third myth that the white paper supports is that Muslims must be profiled; suggesting not only is it necessary, but that it is possible. Here is an excerpt from the paper:

“Radicalization makes little noise. It borders on areas protected by the First and Fourth Amendments. It takes place over a long period of time. It therefore does not lend itself to a traditional criminal investigations approach.”

When we analyze the homegrown cases of Muslim terrorists since 9/11, we find vastly different ethnic origin, age, ideological affiliation, and motivations. While the policy grievance remains consistent in each case, the idea of profiling based on religiosity or the outward expression of religiosity is just plain wrong and nonsensical. Like we saw from Wiktorowicz’s research, religious Muslims should be seen as allies, as there is no empirical relationship between religiosity and support for terrorism.

4. Muslim community leaders and citizens do not need to be consulted in counterterrorism efforts. Nowhere in the 90 plus page report do we find details or best practices for policymakers and intelligence officers in building partnerships with New York Muslims.

In an ironic way, the controversies coming out of the NYPD, while they hurt the relationship between Muslims and law enforcement, they help engage Muslims in the political process and in speaking up for their rights. The New York Muslim community is fed up, and many point to the rising trend of Islamophobia as the cause for this wanton disregard for Muslim civil liberties.

One of the key recommendations that Charles Kurzman, a leading expert on Muslim radicalization of the Triangle Center for Terrorism Research proposes is that Muslim Americans be given the means to express themselves politically in American society. The fight against Islamophobia as a healthy way for Muslim Americans to stand up for their rights and in the process demand equal respect. Like the civil rights movement for Black Americans, many politically engaged Muslims feel that the fight against bigotry and misunderstanding of their faith will result in a greater level of integration into the American experience.

From 2005 to 2011 we have witnessed an increase in the so-called “lone wolf” phenomenon of extremism – an isolated individual becomes indoctrinated by a charismatic pseudo religious leader and seeks to act out violence against the American populace. Thankfully, this threat is relatively minor, and unfortunately often caused by FBI entrapment.

What we have not yet seen is the climate of growing Islamophobia serving as the cause for a lone wolf attack on America, or even the turn to radicalization itself. Since it is always best to be ahead of the storm, we must encourage large-scale movements against Islamophobia because they help to further a healthy civic alternative to American Muslims that are somewhat prone to lunatic false prophets on YouTube like Anwar Awlaki. It is through fighting Islamophobia and standing up for civil rights that we can create a vehicle whereby Muslims can vent their anger and develop a new language that ties the values of Islam to a unique American and democratic narrative. This sort of action has already begun, and when scandals emerge like these, Muslim Americans should be vocal and demand justice.

Colbert Report: ThreatDown – Barack Obama, Fundamentalist Flippers & Coked Up Diplomats

Posted in Anti-Loons with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on January 31, 2012 by loonwatch

Colbert believes that under the sea, Bin Laden might be finding young impressionable dolphins who are willing to wage Jihad.

Starts at 2:23-4:14

Colbert Report: ThreatDown – Barack Obama, Fundamentalist Flippers & Coked Up Diplomats

http://www.colbertnation.com/the-colbert-report-videos/407251/january-30-2012/threatdown—barack-obama–fundamentalist-flippers—coked-up-diplomats
Barack Obama plays the same old dirty political trick of being irresistibly appealing, the Navy trains dolphins to sweep for mines, and the U.N. receives 35 pounds of cocaine. (06:11)

Young Turks: Michael Moore vs. Elisabeth Hasselbeck on Osama bin Laden

Posted in Anti-Loons, Loon TV, Video with tags , , , , , , , , , , , on September 19, 2011 by loonwatch

Cenk, posing as a Bollywood hero

Cenk Uygur and Ana Kasparian of the Young Turks analyze the debate between Michael Moore and Elisabeth Hasselbeck on The View regarding the killing of Osama bin Laden.

Elisabeth Hasselbeck makes almost absolutely no sense:

9/11 Coloring Book Influences Kids With Islamophobia

Posted in Loon Politics, Loon-at-large with tags , , , , , , , , , , on September 1, 2011 by loonwatch

911coloringbook

9/11 Coloring Book Influences Kids With Islamophobia

By Tanya Somanader on Aug 30, 2011 at 4:32 pm

Believing that the upcoming 10th anniversary of Sept. 11 is best memorialized in crayon, Really Big Coloring Books, Inc. is publishing a new coloring book entitled “We Shall Never Forget 9/11: The Kids’ Book of Freedom.” In offering kids the option of coloring the Twin Towers burning, mourning survivors, or the Navy SEALs shooting Osama Bin Laden, publisher Wayne Bell insists that “the doodles represent patriotism,” a “simplistic, honest tool” to “help educate children on events on 9/11.” But many Muslims describe it as, in a word, “disgusting.”

Pointing out that Muslims are already dealing with an environment of increasing Islamophobia, Michigan Council on American Islamic Relations representative Dawud Walid noted that “nearly all of the mentions of Muslims in the book are accompanied by the words ‘terrorist’ or ‘extremist.’” Indeed, the page depicting a Navy SEAL aiming at bin Laden cowering behind is veiled wife reads “Children, the truth is, these terrorist acts were done by freedom-hating Islamic Muslim extremists. These crazy people hate the American way of life because we are FREE and our society is FREE.” Bell’s response? “The truth is the truth“:

“Little kids who pick up this book can have their perceptions colored by those images … it instills bias in young minds,” said Walid. He says that some of the narrative and photos aren’t even correct, noting that Bin Laden wasn’t hiding behind a wife when he was shot.

Bell stood by the book as an “honest depiction”.

“The truth is the truth,” Bell said, adding, “It’s unfortunate that they were all Muslim and that’s the part people want to erase … I don’t know what else you can call them.”

Noting that one page depicts a woman mourning with a cross chain dangling from her neck, Walid says “Muslims mothers lost sons too.” He also noted that he’s not an advocate of showing children violent images — a sentiment that many military families share. Shariah Gibbs, a military spouse in Germany, said “This should not be a coloring book.” Another said, “I would not buy a coloring book [about 9/11]…To me, coloring books should be fun….this is not!”

It is important to note that Bell has published other coloring books on topics “from dinosaurs and zoo animals to African-American leaders, President Obama, superheroes of the Bible and even the Tea Party.” He even said that, if asked to print a book reflecting positive images of Muslim Americans, “I’d print it tomorrow.” To which Walid said, “Well, I’m asking him to do it right now.”

Rep. Peter King Wants Bin Laden Movie Investigation; Kathryn Bigelow, Obama Administration Respond

Posted in Loon-at-large with tags , , , , , , , , , on August 19, 2011 by loonwatch

Peter King really knows how to waste everybody’s time.

Rep. Peter King Wants Bin Laden Movie Investigation; Kathryn Bigelow, Obama Administration Respond

WASHINGTON — The chairman of the House Homeland Security Committee sought an investigation Wednesday into the Obama administration’s cooperation with award-winning filmmakers working on a movie about the hunt for Osama bin Laden.

Rep. Peter King, R-N.Y., said too much information already has leaked out about the Navy SEALs raid that killed bin Laden in Pakistan in May, and Pentagon officials have cautioned against discussing details of the mission.

King asked the inspectors general of the CIA and Defense Department to determine what consultations occurred in the Obama administration about providing Hollywood with access to covert military operators and clandestine CIA officers.

The picture will be directed by Kathryn Bigelow and the screenwriter will be Mark Boal, 2009 Academy Award winners for “The Hurt Locker.”

The White House ridiculed King’s request, saying the moviemakers will not receive any sensitive information.

Press secretary Jay Carney told reporters, “When people, including you in this room, are working on articles, books, documentaries or movies that involve the president, ask to speak to administration officials, we do our best to accommodate them to make sure that facts are correct. That is hardly a novel approach to the media.

“We do not discuss classified information. And I would hope that as we face the continued threat from terrorism, the House Committee on Homeland Security would have more important topics to discuss than a movie.”

He said information provided about the raid was focused on President Barack Obama’s role and it’s the same information given to anybody writing about the topic.

King said his staff has spoken to CIA officials who were upset about any cooperation with the movie-makers. Among the things he asked the inspectors general to investigate were:

_Any consultations within the administration on the advisability of providing Hollywood executives with access to covert military operators and clandestine CIA officers to discuss the raid.

_Whether a copy of the film would be submitted to the military and CIA for pre-publication review to determine whether special operations tactics, techniques and procedures, or intelligence sources and methods, would be revealed.

_Whether filmmakers attended a meeting with special operations personnel and CIA officers, and whether any such attendance was balanced against the duty to maintain cover for these operatives.

The movie may be released by Sony Pictures Entertainment next fall, shortly before the November 2012 elections.

Marine Col. Dave Lapan, a Defense Department spokesman, told reporters, “This film project is only in the script development phase, and DoD is providing assistance with script research, which is something we commonly do for established filmmakers.

“Until there is a script to review, and a request for equipment or other DoD support, there is no formal agreement for DoD support.”

Bigelow and Boal said in a statement, “Our upcoming film project about the decade-long pursuit of bin Laden has been in the works for many years and integrates the collective efforts of three administrations, including those of Presidents Clinton, Bush and Obama, as well as the cooperative strategies and implementation by the Department of Defense and the CIA.

“Indeed, the dangerous work of finding the world’s most wanted man was carried out by individuals in the military and intelligence communities who put their lives at risk for the greater good without regard for political affiliation. This was an American triumph, both heroic and non-partisan, and there is no basis to suggest that our film will represent this enormous victory otherwise.”

Huckabee Generates Cash With 9/11 ‘History’ Cartoon

Posted in Loon People, Loon Politics with tags , , , , , , , , , , on August 9, 2011 by loonwatch

Mike HuckabeeMike Huckabee

Huckabee Generates Cash With 9/11 ‘History’ Cartoon

(see video here: http://www.wpix.com/videobeta/57ae18bd-4a45-4c58-9923-027f19b9a111/News/9-11-Cartoon-Controversy )
By MARY MURPHYpix11.com

7:46 p.m. EDT, August 3, 2011

NEW YORK (PIX11)— Former presidential candidate, Mike Huckabee, is cashing in on the upcoming, 10th anniversary of the 9/11 terror attacks by marketing an educational “cartoon” about the events that sent the United States back to war.

“You can go to Learn Our History.com,” Huckabee told viewers this week on Pat Robertson‘s “700 Club” cable show. The one-timeArkansas governor is producing a series of DVD’s, and he told the TV audience, “The first one’s $9.95, and then it goes to $11.95.”

“Someone to profit off the worst day in American history is unheard of,” fumed retired, FDNY fire chief, Jim Riches, who lost his firefighter son, Jim Jr., on 9/11.

“Three thousand Americans were murdered, and it’s for his personal gain. I think it’s blood money,” Riches told PIX 11.

A preview of Huckabee’s cartoon for the “Time Cycle Academy” shows a plane heading toward the Twin Towers on a clear day, with someone shouting below “No!” before the jet crashes into the first tower. The cartoon also shows a “Wanted” poster for Al Qaeda leader, Osama Bin Laden — long before he was fatally shot by U.S. Navy Seals this past May — portraying an animated Bin Laden in the mountains of Afghanistan, as he proclaims, “The time for jihad is upon us, death to the Americans!”

When PIX 11 traveled to the Tribute Center right next to Ground Zero on Wednesday, a Utah tourist, Heather Robertson, said this about Huckabee’s history lesson: “I don’t know if I like it in cartoon form.” Robertson continued, “I think it diminishes what took place on 9/11.”

A laborer named Frankie, who was working in a hard-hat re-building World Trade Center Tower 4, said this about Huckabee’s efforts, “Then do it for free. He’s about making money. He ain’t about teaching anybody anything. If he’s doing not-for-profit, then that’s a different story. But I’m sure he’s making money on it.”

David Yi, a Korean immigrant who lives in New Jersey, did not think the cartoon was such a bad idea for kids. “We have to teach them freedom to protect ourselves,” he told PIX 11.

Huckabee’s representatives have not been responding to requests for comment.

Jim Riches had plenty more to say, however. “I think for politicians trying to teach our kids, we’re in trouble. Leave it to the teachers, the educators.”

Riches also noted the recently-passed Zadroga Law to help sick, 9/11 “First Responders” leaves certain people out. “The people who have cancer aren’t even going to be covered,” Riches told PIX 11. “And I think that would be another good place to put the money, instead of putting it in his pocket.”

See Video: