Steven Emerson is an American author who allows himself to be called “a leading authority on Islamic extremist networks” (according to his website).
When you have a salty title like that, you like to get out and discuss said networks from time-to-time, usually in exchange for currency and/or exposure. Emerson’s latest sojourn landed him at the desk of another TV judge gone network talking head: Jeanine Pirro.
Emerson was on Judge Jeanine’s show to sound the alarm about how England is becoming more Muslim, and that’s when the magic happened. In his best teenage girl impression, Emerson called Birmingham, England — the UK’s second largest city — “totally Muslim.” He was completely wrong and later ate a generous helping of crow, but not before social media responded by calling him an idiot.
The full quote from America’s “expert on Islamic extremist networks” via live broadcast:
[In Britain] “there are actual cities like Birmingham that are totally Muslim, where non-Muslims just simply don’t go in.”
Before we get to how Twitter responded to the gaffe, it’s important to know that Emerson took his punishment like a big boy and went on the BBC to discuss it (video if you’d like), where he was told that “he had an agenda.” Here’s UK Prime Minister David Cameron waxing poetic about the incident:
“When I heard this, frankly, I choked on my porridge and I thought it must be April Fool’s Day. This guy’s clearly a complete idiot.”
The problem is that Emerson landed just a bit outside reality with his claim: according to the 2011 Census, 46 percent of Birmingham residents identify as Christian while only 22 percent call themselves Muslim. More than 1 million people live in Birmingham, and only 220,000 of them following the teachings of Islam.
On to Twitter and the fun hashtag that came up as a result of this tomfoolery: #FoxNewsFacts
— Barracks O’Bama (@P0TUS) January 12, 2015
The original name of the show was MiddleEastEnders. The BBC dropped the “Middle” to conceal its creeping sharia agenda. #foxnewsfacts
— Dan Murphy (@bungdan) January 11, 2015
— moses (@musaQ_95) January 13, 2015
— Anthony Hillman (@axlreznor) January 11, 2015
— Kamila Shamsie (@kamilashamsie) January 11, 2015
— Peter Thompson (@TheRedRag) January 11, 2015
Birmingham has a chain of fast food restaurants called “Burqa King” #foxnewsfacts
— Tom Copley (@tomcopley) January 11, 2015
— Bipartisan Report (@Bipartisanism) January 13, 2015
— Alexander Jones® (@BigAlexJones) January 13, 2015
Nottingham is 98% Jedi #foxnewsfacts
— Atrios (@Atrios) January 11, 2015
— David Jack (@DamJef) January 11, 2015