Glenn discusses facts, implications behind boy arrested after bringing homemade clock to school

Glenn sat down with the mayor of Irving, Texas and a security expert on his T.V. program Monday night, to discuss the story of Ahmed Mohamed, a 14-year-old boy who was arrested after bringing a homemade clock to school last week. Once again, the media dropped the ball and got the story all wrong.

"You will change your mind once you have all of the facts," Glenn said.

First, Glenn described the story as it came out last week, and who could be against this?

"A young, clean-cut Muslim teenager is trying his hand in a science project. He makes a homemade clock, goes to school. Instead of praise for his invention, he gets arrested and suspended from school. Even when the police knew that it wasn’t a bomb, they still arrested him," Glenn said. "He's just another victim of Islamophobia in America."

Like many people, Glenn said the story tugged at his heart and he was about to voice his own support for the teenager. But then, the facts came out.

Watch the clip of Mayor Beth Van Duyne and Jim Hanson from the Center for Security Policy speaking with Glenn. Scroll down for additional footage.

Below is a rush transcript of this segment, it might contain errors.

GLENN: Let me just propose a theory. I’m just thinking out loud, but I’m trying to make sense of this. My theory is that for some reason Irving is important to the Islamists, not the Muslims, but the Islamists. It could be as simple as the progressives trying to turn Texas blue, and this is just the place where they’re just going to start planting the seeds and taking a stand. You pissed them off, and now this is a dog whistle. This is not a story that is for anybody to hear, except for the Islamists because once you create a boogeyman, now all the money, all the resources, all the intellectual power, all is focused on your little town of Irving, Texas. You think there’s a possibility that that’s true?

MAYOR VAN DUYNE: It’s nothing that I really want to have to face that that’s true. I would hate to think that that’s true.

GLENN: So would I, but can you explain it any other way?

MAYOR VAN DUYNE: I mean, as much as we’re being portrayed as a small town in Texas, the fact is that Irving is one of the top 100 largest cities in the country.

GLENN: It’s the most diverse city in the country and gets along.

MAYOR VAN DUYNE: Most diverse zip code.

GLENN: And it gets along, everybody generally gets along.

MAYOR VAN DUYNE: Fifth safest city in the country for a city our size.

GLENN: So, tell me, and Jim, I’d like to hear you because the Mayor is probably not going to say this. Does that sound unreasonable to you?

JIM: I think it’s completely reasonable. I think it’s happening. I don’t think there’s any question that this latest event was a PR stunt. It was a staged event where someone convinced this kid to bring a device that he didn’t build, as you mentioned. It’s a RadioShack clock that he put in a briefcase, and in a briefcase it looks like a bomb. You know how I know that, Glenn? Because I’ve built briefcase bombs and blown them up. That’s what they look like. So, anyone who looked at that was reasonable in assuming that that was a dangerous device. They did that to create the exact scenario that played out. They wanted people to react, and they wanted to portray this kid as an innocent victim.

I think he was a pawn of potentially his father. His sister actually claimed that she was suspended. His sister told MSNBC that she was suspended by the same school district for making a bomb threat years ago. Don’t know if that’s true yet, but she said that in her own words. So, there’s a vendetta from them, and they’re tied, as you mentioned, with CAIR, and CAIR is Muslim Brotherhood and Hamas tied. They’re basically involved in civilization jihad, so I think you’re right.

GLENN: Has the president reached out to you, Beth?

MAYOR VAN DUYNE: No, I have not heard at all from the president.

GLENN: Surprise you?

MAYOR VAN DUYNE: I was really shocked when I saw his tweet, yeah. I was really surprised. It seems to be an underlying habit that he is going to second-guess police officers without any kind of information. I now have our police chief who is a wonderful, wonderful man, a family man, a churchgoing man, and I now have our police officers as well as a number of teachers, school administrators, receiving death threats as a direct result of this. It is unfortunate, and it has got to stop.

Below is a rush transcript of this segment, it might contain errors.

MAYOR VAN DUYNE: We’ve heard more from the media than the child ever released to the police when we were asking him questions. He told a lot more to the reporters than he ever told to the police. There’s a problem with that. If your child was in that school and you saw something like this come in, you would want to make sure it is our priority to make our children safe in school, period. Irving is the fifth safest city in the country. We’re pretty very proud of that fact. We have a very professional police department. I’m very proud of them. What has happened as a result of the hashtag of the misinformation that has been spread like wildfire immediately by the president is we now have death threats on members of our police department and in our school district. For what?

JIM: For doing their jobs.

MAYOR VAN DUYNE: And to make sure that our children are safe in that school.

GLENN: What’s coming next?

JIM: This was a success. It was a raging success for them. They are celebrating and dancing, and they’re planning their next influence operation, because that’s the correct term for this. It’s an influence operation.

GLENN: Explain that.

JIM: You take a situation, and you create the appearance of something bad to get an effect. They created the appearance of an anti-Muslim bias where there was none, where there was pure public safety concern, and they use that to portray Muslims as victims, Americans as bigots, and our system as stacked against them. They will do that again, and what they’re trying to do is censor any criticism of Islam. That allows them to do things like impose sharia tribunals like the mayor shut down and use Islamic law to supplant US law. They’re going to be more successful the more the media helps them by not being concerned that this is actually happening, by just looking at the surface and not digging deeper.

GLENN: Beth, what should we do? What should we do?

MAYOR VAN DUYNE: Well, first of all, don’t just jump on a bandwagon and knee-jerk reaction when you read a headline. I think people thought that they knew a lot more about this story just by reading a headline. Clearly that’s not the way to react. I think we need to start supporting our teachers and start supporting our police.

GLENN: Hang on just a second. I thought I knew more about this.

MAYOR VAN DUYNE: That shocks me, by the way. You have my cell phone number. You should’ve called me up.

GLENN: But I read the story. It’s not something that was on my radar. I just read a quick little story, and I’m like how is this possible?

MAYOR VAN DUYNE: That was my first reaction, but I’m in the position where I can start immediately making those phone calls. At six o’clock in the morning I’m calling and waking people up going I need to know more information about this. But I think when you’re the president, you probably have some resources to be able to make a few calls.

GLENN: And you have the common sense that I had. As I was thinking, I didn’t actually type it out, but as I was thinking, you know what, I’m with Ahmed too. That’s an outrage. And then I thought what are you doing? You don’t even know anything about this story. I think that’s what happens to us.

Stop trying to be right and think of the children

Mario Tama/Getty Images

All the outrage this week has mainly focused on one thing: the evil Trump administration and its minions who delight in taking children from their illegal immigrant parents and throwing them all in dungeons. Separate dungeons, mind you.

That makes for a nice, easy storyline, but the reality is less convenient. Most Americans seem to agree that separating children from their parents — even if their parents entered the US illegally — is a bad thing. But what if that mom and dad you're trying to keep the kids with aren't really the kids' parents? Believe it or not, fraud happens.

RELATED: Where were Rachel Maddow's tears for immigrant children in 2014?

While there are plenty of heartbreaking stories of parents simply seeking a chance for a better life for their children in the US, there are also corrupt, abusive human traffickers who profit from the illegal immigration trade. And sorting all of this out is no easy task.

This week, the Department of Homeland Security said that since October 2017, more than 300 children have arrived at the border with adults claiming to be their parents who turned out not to be relatives. 90 of these fraud cases came from the Rio Grande Valley sector alone.

In 2017, DHS reported 46 causes of fraudulent family claims. But there have already been 191 fraud cases in 2018.

Shouldn't we be concerned about any child that is smuggled by a human trafficker?

When Homeland Security Secretary Kirstjen Nielsen pointed out this 315 percent increase, the New York Times was quick to give these family fraud cases "context" by noting they make up less than one percent of the total number of illegal immigrant families apprehended at the southern border. Their implication was that Nielsen was exaggerating the numbers. Even if the number of fraud cases at the border was only 0.001 percent, shouldn't we be concerned about any child that is smuggled by a human trafficker?

This is the most infuriating part of this whole conversation this week (if you can call it a "conversation") — that both sides have an angle to defend. And while everyone's busy yelling and making their case, children are being abused.

What if we just tried, for two seconds, to love having mercy more than we love having to be right all the time?

Remember when cartoons were happy things? Each panel took you on a tiny journey, carrying you to an unexplored place. In Understanding Comics, Scott McCloud writes:

The comics creator asks us to join in a silent dance of the seen and the unseen. The visible and the invisible. This dance is unique to comics. No other artform gives so much to its audience while asking so much from them as well. This is why I think it's a mistake to see comics as a mere hybrid of the graphic arts and prose fiction. What happens between . . . panels is a kind of magic only comics can create.

When that magic is manipulated or politicized, it often devolves the artform into a baseless thing. Yesterday, Occupy Wall Street published the perfect example of low-brow deviation of the artform: A six-panel approach at satire, which imitates the instructions-panel found in the netted cubbyhole behind seats on airplanes. The cartoon is a critique of the recent news about immigrant children being separated from their parents after crossing the border. It is a step-by-step guide to murdering US Immigrations and Customs Enforcement agents.

RELATED: Cultural appropriation has jumped the shark, and everyone is noticing

The first panel shows a man shoving an infant into a cage meant for Pomeranians. The following five panels feature instructions, and include pictures of a cartoonish murder.

The panels read as follows:

  1. If an ICE agent tries to take your child at the border, don't panic.
  2. Pull your child away as quickly as possibly by force.
  3. Gently tell your child to close his/her eyes and ears so they won't witness what you are about to do.
  4. Grab the ICE agent from behind and push your knife into his chest with an upward thrust, causing the agent's sternum to break.
  5. Reach into his chest and pull out his still beating heart.
  6. Hold his bloody heart out for all other agents to see, and tell them that the same fate awaits them if they f--- with your child again.

Violent comics are nothing new. But most of the time, they remain in the realms of invented worlds — in other words, not in our own, with reference to actual people, let alone federal agents.

The mainstream media made a game of crying racism with every cartoon depiction of Obama during his presidency, as well as during his tenure as Senator, when the New Yorker, of all things, faced scrutiny for depicting him in "Muslim clothing." Life was a minefield for political cartoonists during the Obama era.

Chris Hondros/Getty Images

This year, we saw the leftist outrage regarding The Simpsons character Apu — a cartoon representation of a highly-respected, though cartoonishly-depicted, character on a cartoon show composed of cartoonishly-depicted characters.

We all remember Charlie Hebdo, which, like many outlets that have used cartoon satire to criticize Islam, faced the wrath and ire of people unable to see even the tamest representation of the prophet, Muhammad.

Interesting, isn't it? Occupy Wall Street publishes a cartoon that advocates murdering federal agents, and critics are told to lighten up. Meanwhile, the merest depiction of Muhammad has resulted in riots throughout the world, murder and terror on an unprecedented scale.

The intersection of Islam and comics is complex enough to have its own three-hour show, so we'll leave it at that, for now. Although, it is worth mentioning the commentary by satirical website The Onion, which featured a highly offensive cartoon of all the major religious figures except Muhammad. It noted:

Following the publication of the image above, in which the most cherished figures from multiple religious faiths were depicted engaging in a lascivious sex act of considerable depravity, no one was murdered, beaten, or had their lives threatened.

Of course, Occupy Wall Street is free to publish any cartoon they like. Freedom of speech, and so on—although there have been several instances in which violent cartoons were ruled to have violated the "yelling fire in a crowded theater" limitation of the First Amendment.

Posting it to Twitter is another issue — this is surely in violation of Twitter's violent content policy, but something tells me nothing will come of it. It's a funny world, isn't it? A screenshot of a receipt from Chick-fil-A causes outrage but a cartoon advocating murder gets crickets.

RELATED: Twitter mob goes ballistic over Father's Day photo of Caitlyn Jenner. Who cares?

In Understanding Comics, Scott McCloud concludes that, "Today the possibilities for comics are — as they've always been — endless. Comics offers . . . range and versatility, with all the potential imagery of film and painting plus the intimacy of the written word. And all that's needed is the desire to be heard, the will to learn, and the ability to see."

Smile, and keep moving forward.

Crude and awful as the Occupy Wall Street comic is, the best thing we can do is nod and look elsewhere for the art that will open our eyes. Let the lunatics draw what they want, let them stew in their own flawed double standards. Otherwise, we're as shallow and empty as they are, and nothing good comes of that. Smile, and keep moving forward.

Things are getting better. Show the world how to hear, how to learn, how to see.

People should start listening to Nikki Haley

ANDREW CABALLERO-REYNOLDS/AFP/Getty Images

Okay. Let's take a vote. You know, an objective, quantifiable count. How many resolutions has the UN Human Rights Council adopted condemning dictatorships? Easy. Well. How do you define "dictatorship"?

Well, one metric is the UN Human Rights Council Condemnation. How many have the United Nations issued to China, with a body count higher than a professional Call of Duty player?

Zero.

How about Venezuela, where socialism is devouring its own in the cruelest, most unsettling ways imaginable?

Zero.

And Russia, home of unsettling cruelty and rampant censorship, murder and (actual) homophobia?

Zero.

Iraq? Zero. Turkey? Iraq? Zero. Cuba? Zero. Pakistan? Zero.

RELATED: Nikki Haley just dropped some serious verbal bombs on Russia at the UN

According to UN Human Rights Council Condemnations, 2006-2016, none of these nations is as dangerous as we'd imagined. Or, rather, none of them faced a single condemnation. Meanwhile, one country in particular has faced unbelievable scrutiny and fury — you'll never guess which country.

No, it's not Somalia. It's Israel. With 68 UN Human Rights Council Condemnations! In fact, the number of total United Nations condemnations against Israel outnumbers the total of condemnations against all other countries combined. The only country that comes close is Syria, with 15.

The Trump administration withdrew from the United Nations Human Rights Council on Tuesday in protest of what it perceives as an entrenched bias against Israel and a willingness to allow notorious human rights abusers as members.

In an address to the UN Security Council on Tuesday, Nikki Haley said:

Let's remember that the Hamas terrorist organization has been inciting violence for years, long before the United States decided to move our embassy. This is what is endangering the people of Gaza. Make no mistake, Hamas is pleased with the results from yesterday... No country in this chamber would act with more restraint than Israel has.

Maybe people should start listening to Haley. Hopefully, they will. Not likely, but there's no crime in remaining hopeful.

Here's a question unique to our times: "Should I tell my father 'Happy Father's Day,' even though he (she?) is now one of my mothers?"

Father's Day was four days ago, yes, but this story is just weird enough to report on. One enjoyable line to read was this gem from Hollywood Gossip: "Cait is a woman and a transgender icon, but she is also and will always be the father of her six children."

RELATED: If Bruce was never a he and always a she, who won the men's Olympic gold in 1976?

Imagine reading that to someone ten — even five — years ago. And, honestly, there's something nice about it. But the strangeness of its having ever been written overpowers any emotional impact it might bring.

"So lucky to have you," wrote Kylie Jenner, in the Instagram caption under pre-transition pictures of Bruce Jenner.

Look. I risk sounding like a tabloid by mere dint of having even mentioned this story, but the important element is the cultural sway that's occurring. The original story was that a band of disgruntled Twitter users got outraged about the supposed "transphobic" remarks by Jenner's daughter.

But, what we should be saying is, "who the hell cares?" Who cares what one Jenner says to another — and more importantly and on a far deeper level — who cares what some anonymous Twitter user has to say?

When are we going to stop playing into the hands of the Twitter mob?

When are we going to stop playing into the hands of the Twitter mob? Because, at the moment, they've got it pretty good. They have a nifty relationship with the mainstream media: One or two Twitter users get outraged by any given thing — in this case Jenner and supposed transphobia. In return, the mainstream media use the Twitter comment as a source.

Then, a larger Twitter audience points to the article itself as proof that there's some kind of systemic justice at play. It's a closed-market currency, where the negative feedback loop of proof and evidence is composed of faulty accusations. Isn't it a hell of a time to be alive?