Anderson Cooper scored a real prize with this guy. Meet former U.S. Marine Jon Ritzheimer, the guy who is organizing a "Draw Mohammed" event outside an Arizona mosque. But wait! There's more. Said event will be attended by armed bikers -- and we know how nonviolent they can be. Said bikers will also be wearing "F-ck Islam" t-shirts while they intentionally insult Muslims.
But Ritzheimer wants you to know it's a "free speech" event, not an Anti-Islam affair. Sure it is.
DId I mention that this mosque is the same one where the two guys who drove to Texas in body armor with a car full of weapons only to find themselves shot dead by police worshipped? It is.
So here we are, with Anderson Cooper, Ritzheimer and Phil Mudd, former CIA counterterrorism expert, to try and understand the logic of this "free speech event."
I've transcribed the entire interview with Ritzheimer below but you should really just watch the segment. Captain Idiot can't articulate what he's doing, why he's doing it, or what he hopes to accomplish as a result of it.
I don't know who is prompting Jon Ritzheimer to organize today's "try to bait Muslims into violence" event, but I'd put money that Pam Geller is standing in the background next to Frank Gaffney and David Horowitz cheering.
We begin with Anderson Cooper's opening salvo:
COOPER: So you're encouraging hundreds of armed people to gather outside a mosque during a prayer service wearing t-shirts saying f--- Islam."
You have the right to protest -- everybody does in this country -- but you yourself have said this is a provocation. I know you've compared it to poking a bear, kicking a hornet's nest. What are you really trying to achieve?"
RITZHEIMER: Well, I'm really trying to achieve exposing Islam and the truth about what's written in the Koran.
Mr. Mudd...says that he thinks this is a bad idea and some people would probably argue that the signers that signed the Declaration of Independence was a bad idea back in their day.
COOPER: So you're comparing yourself to the signers of the Declaration of Independence?"
RITZHEIMER: Uh, yeah. I don't want to have to live in fear. I shouldn't have to live in fear.
COOPER: What are you afraid of?
RITZHEIMER: Well, we've received a bunch of credible threats, I've already had the police come to my house. My family's currently packing up and they're going into hiding.
Strike one, Captain Idiot. I guarantee you that if you hadn't gone onto Facebook and actively promoted an event that was intended to shove a sharp stick into Islam's eye, you wouldn't be getting threats right now. No martyrdom acts, please. Actions have consequences. So does so-called free speech.
COOPER: So I understand you don't like Islam. You clearly equate Islam with terrorism. You served in Iraq. You served proudly in the Marines, and we should honor that service. You served in support of an Islamic government in Iraq. So if you hate Islam, how do you justify having done that?
RITZHEIMER: The core values of Islam is what I really hate.
COOPER: Right, but you were promoting an Islamic government. You were helping bolster an Islamic government in Iraq, so why were you doing that?
RITZHEIMER: I was over there, I was following orders.
COOPER: So do you feel you were supporting terrorists while you were supporting the Islamic government in Iraq? Do you say the Marines who were fighting in Afghanistan are supporting terrorism as well?
RITZHEIMER: No. No I do not. Let me finish. I was uneducated when I went over there. I was a junior Marine following orders, I was scared, but I was uneducated about Islam. It wasn't until I came home and utilized my 9-11 GI Bill and --
Welp. That wasn't a great use of taxpayer money, but we'll survive somehow.
COOPER: But now that you're allegedly educated, you were supporting an Islamic government in Iraq. So you're saying that Marines and others who are currently serving in Afghanistan and elsewhere are supporting terrorists?
RITZHEIMER: If their government is going to be run under Sharia law and stuff then yeah, I don't support that.
COOPER: It's not Sharia law but it is an Islamic government so you believe that all active duty service members right now are supporting terrorism around the world.
RITZHEIMER: No, I do not believe that.
COOPER: But they're supporting Islamic governments and you believe Islam equals terrorism.
RITZHEIMER: I do not believe that.
COOPER: You don't believe that Islam at its core is terrorism?
RITZHEIMER: Oh yes, true Islam is terrorism. Yes, the ones that are out committing these atrocities and stuff, they're following the book as it's written.
Philip Mudd, former CIA counterterrorism expert, had strong words for young Mr. Ritzheimer, telling him that this is exactly what ISIS uses to recruit people out of US cities. Referring to ISIS arguments for how Americans think of Islam, Mudd said, "They (Americans) talk to you about democracy, free speech, and living with your religion regardless of what it is in America, but they don't live that in practice."
COOPER: Aren't you playing into Al Qaeda and ISIS by telling them you can't be a Muslim in the United States? Isn't this the message that the terrorists want?
COOPER: OK, so you're playing into Al Qaeda and ISIS' hands. Do you feel good about that?
RITZHEIMER: I'm just doing what I have to do to make sure my children have a good future.
COOPER: Isis and Al Qaeda is pushing this narrative that there's a war between Islam and the West. You fully believe there's a war between Islam and the West, I guess, yes?
COOPER: So you think that it's wise for the West to have war against the billion-plus Muslims around the world?
RITZHEIMER: No, I don't want war, but they need to learn tolerance. We're not the ones out committing these acts. We're not the ones threatening anybody."
COOPER: "You don't think bringing guns to a mosque while families are praying inside while you're wearing t-shirts that say f--- Islam and shouting whatever it is you're going to shout at them as they come and as they go -- you don't think that's promoting violence at all?"
RITZHEIMER: "I think the whole thing is -- the cartoon contest especially, I think it's stupid and ridiculous but it's what needs to take place in order to expose the true colors of Islam."
Wait, what? That thing you're organizing is stupid? Why organize it at all, then Captain Idiot?
I'm fairly certain our First Amendment rights will remain intact without a bunch of armed bikers standing in front of a mosque drawing Mohammed while wearing F-ck Islam t-shirts as worshippers enter and leave, but you know, this is America, and in America, we let people be stupid idiots, even if they did serve in the military.