Glenn Beck and his defenders have fiercely denied allegations that he is a racist or has incited racial hostility on his radio and TV programs. But the evidence of his animosity toward people of color is abundant since the election of a black president.
Looking back on Beck’s crusades since the inauguration (which, coincidentally, was also the inauguration of his show on Fox News), Beck began with an attack on ACORN, a group of community organizers who advocated on behalf of poor and minority populations. Then he went after Van Jones, an African-America who sought to bring jobs and environmental justice to disenfranchised communities. Then it was Mark Lloyd, an African-America working to insure diversity in the media in his role at the FCC. Then it was Valerie Jarrett, the African-America aide to President Obama. The it was Shirley Sherrod, an African-American woman who was slandered by Beck and Andrew Breitbart in a phony attempt to cast her as a racist.
Now Beck is attacking Dolores Huerta, an Hispanic labor activist with a legendary resume. She co-founded the United Farm Workers of America with Cesar Chavez. She is presently working with the Department of Labor to insure that workers are not exploited by employers seeking to pay them less than they are entitled to under the law. Presumably Beck would like to bring back indentured servitude.
The real question is why are the targets of Beck’s attacks so often people of color? Even though there is the occasional Caucasian like Cass Sunstein (who is Jewish), the racial scale for Beck’s tirades is heavily weighted toward minorities. Anyone who doesn’t recognize the significance of that fact is dwelling in deep denial. With this assault on Huerta, Beck continues to prove that he is overtly discriminatory in his selection of enemies.
On a tangential point, the Obama administration has a pretty poor record of standing up for its people. They let Van Jones go. They forced Shirley Sherrod to resign (before apologizing). They never defended ACORN, even after they were absolved of any wrongdoing. If they permit Beck to railroad Huerta out of the Labor Department they are going to see the last remaining remnants of their support from progressives, and others on the left, drift away. So my message to the administration: Don’t be stupid.