Last week, Fox News contributor and bombastic radio host Bill Cunningham decided it would be just fine to bully a female "liberal" guest on Hannity's bashfest.
Sean Hannity's pal, Bill Cunningham - a regular guest who loves to use Barack Obama's middle name (and insinuates that it's related to his supposedly lax war on terror) - may have finally gone too far last night. This time, Cunningham exploded at Fox News contributor (and Hannity admirer), liberal Tamara Holder, telling her to "know your place and shut your mouth." And more.
Holder seems to have a talent for ignitingincendiary discussions. But Cunningham beat her to it in this segment. He started out by accusing her of suffering from "Beckel-itis" and repeatedly calling her a "stooge." He said, near the end, "You're a liberal stooge and an excuse monger for the Obama administration." Later, as Holder muttered, "Never mind," and looked down, Cunningham attacked, "What, are you going to cry?"
Lately, Fox News seems to have decided they'll bolster their ratings by letting the trolls control the conversation, and Cunningham was doing a magnificent job of trolling Holder -- which gave other Fox hosts an opportunity to issue mild denunciations of his behavior in order to appear magnanimously 'balanced', just like they did when Erick Erickson trolled women.
Do you see a pattern here? What Cunningham said was reprehensible, but it's pretty standard Fox News stock-in-trade. By having the women in the morning slot denounce that behavior, they get to pretend as though they give a damn about women -- while they simultaneously troll and manhandle them verbally. It seems that Fox has decided playing both sides might save their plunging ratings.
What would save their plunging ratings would be for them to step up and fire the man who thought it was perfectly acceptable to come on the air and bully another contributor, and that is true whether male or female. It doesn't matter whether Holder was a woman or not. Telling another person to "know [their] place and shut up" is bully behavior and completely unacceptable. It's no different than Rush Limbaugh calling Sandra Fluke a slut.
Cunningham has a right to his opinion but not a right to be a bully. Cunningham should have already have been fired, but he hasn't. It might be time to call for Fox News to take a stand against bullies. They can start with Bill, and then have a hard look at Sean Hannity, who sat back and allowed that to go on.
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