July 18, 2020

Fox News is undergoing its own version of a Black Lives Matter protest and it couldn’t happen to a more deserving bunch.

Not only are Black staffers mad as hell over the systemic racism, they don’t seem willing to take it any more.

According to The Daily Beast, the proverbial straw that broke the camel’s back was the jaw-dropping graphic the network posted showing stock market gains after the murders of prominent African Americans. It would have been terrible at any time but it was especially offensive shortly after the murder of George Floyd.

Four days later, a group of Black staffers discussed the matter with Fox honchos and, according to The Daily Beast, “It did not go well.”

It was almost immediately rife with tension. One staffer directly asked why Bret Baier—the anchor of the network’s key weekday news broadcast, Special Report, which aired the offensive graphic—was not on the call, nor any other white on-air talent. (Baier had previously apologized for the “major screw-up,” noting that, because the show bears his name, “the buck stops with me.” Fox News also apologized for the “insensitivity” of the infographic, adding that it “should have never aired on television without full context.”)

Other participants on the call expressed anger and distress about rampant racism at Fox, both on- and off-air.

One employee was especially angry, saying, “They created a cell—they created a white supremacist cell inside the top cable network in America, the one that directly influences the president… This is rank racism excused by Murdoch.”

As someone who has been watching and blogging about Fox for over a decade, I can attest that on-air racism is nothing new at Fox, though it does seem to be worse now.

But what gives me heart is that the network’s own employees are in revolt. More from The Daily Beast:

Over the past month, the network’s Black employees, including on-air talent, have begun to openly confront management over Fox’s anti-Black rhetoric—especially that of the network’s biggest stars, Laura Ingraham and Tucker Carlson.

Fox News personnel have expressed outrage to network brass over their unwillingness to rein in hosts like Ingraham, whose primetime show—helmed by Tommy Firth, the same executive producer behind Megyn Kelly’s former Fox show—has long made white grievance politics a core feature. On June 29, she did an anti-Black Lives Matter monologue which included a line that many viewed as a racist dog whistle and threat: “We will remember those who desert their colors.”

And the employees are not going along with Fox's PR fig leaves:

In one such monologue, Carlson warned viewers that a Black Lives Matter “mob” will “come for you.” Fox News PR scrambled to claim his tirade was actually just about Democrats and “inner city politicians,” but some of the primetime star’s co-workers weren’t buying it.

“Bull. Shit. They have the script written that gives them an out,” one Fox staffer told The Daily Beast. “But what the viewers hear is the white supremacist crap. And that crap goes straight to the White House.”

I never thought I’d say this to anyone at Fox News, but keep it up, guys!

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