I heard the President on Friday saying that we should not jump to any conclusions about Nidal Hasan, the militant Islamist who killed more than a dozen American soldiers last week at Fort Hood.
(Keep in mind that Obama is the same guy who - less than 24 hours after the incident, and knowing almost nothing about the facts of the case - announced that Cambridge police had "acted stupidly" when they arrested his buddy for disorderly conduct up in Massachusetts. So his advice about not jumping to conclusions has a sort of "do as I say, not as I do" ring to it.)
But, in deference to the President, let's not jump. Let's just see where the evidence takes us. Here's what we know so far:
1) Major Hasan attended the controverial Dar al-Hijrah mosque in Great Falls, Virginia, in 2001, at the same time as two of the 9/11 hijackers.
2) The preacher at the mosque at that time was Anwar al-Awlaki, an American-born Yemeni scholar who - last August - was banned from addressing a meeting in London because of his support for attacking troops, and his support of terrorist organizations.
3) Hasan's eyes "lit up" when he mentioned his deep respect for al-Awlaki's teachings, according to a fellow Muslim officer at Fort Hood.
4) While attending a Maryland graduate military medical program, Hasan's fellow students complained to the faculty about Hasan's "anti-American propaganda," but said a fear of appearing discriminatory against a Muslim student kept officers from filing a formal complaint.
5) Before opening fire, Hasan screamed "Allahu Akbar," meaning "God is Great," and then killed at least 13 Americans.
But, just to be clear, we shouldn't jump to the conclusion that this incident has anything to do with Islamic hatred of Americans. In that same spirit of fairness, I am refusing to jump to the following conclusions:
1) I refuse to believe that the Yankees' recent World Series win is in any way connected to their ability to score more runs than their opponents.
2) I refuse to believe that the earth's eastward rotation contributes in any way to the direction in which the sun will rise tomorrow morning.
3) I refuse to believe that the trial lawyers' hundreds of millions of dollars in contributions to Democrats in any way explains the total lack of tort reform in the health care bill passed this weekend.
4) And, finally, I will not jump to the conclusion that we elected a naive, inexperienced, socialist junior senator to be our president just because of his skin color.
I'll leave you to draw your own conclusions.