Fox News Inspires KKK Threats

Just in case anyone still thinks that Fox News is merely an overtly biased right-wing mouthpiece for Republican issues and people, here’s a story of what trafficking in hate and lies can lead to in the real world:

“The white co-owner of a Palm Beach restaurant told her black employees they’d be fired if they voted for Barack Obama, and on the night of Obama’s victory, she wrote ‘KKK’ on their timecards and in notes she posted in the back of the restaurant.”

The owner of the restaurant claims that her actions were not meant to be taken seriously, but that is disingenuous at best. I cannot fathom how such behavior could be characterized as a joke. And in a startling attempt to defend herself, she sought to shift the blame:

“I think I got crazy with FOX News, watching too much FOX News.”

This is the sort of ugliness that is entirely predictable when you put unrepentant, racist provocateurs in the anchor seats of major television networks. It is what should be expected when those anchors invite other confirmed racists on their shows to affirm their repulsive views.

Throughout the past presidential campaign, Fox News led the rightist media in peddling racial hate. Let’s recap:

  • E.D. Hill: A fist bump? A pound? A terrorist fist jab?
  • Liz Trotta: [N]ow we have what some are reading as a suggestion that somebody knock off Osama …uh… Obama … well, both if we could.
  • Fox On-Air Graphic: Outraged Liberals: Stop Picking On Obama’s Baby Mama!
  • Bill O’Reilly: I don’t want to go on a lynching party against Michelle Obama unless there’s evidence, hard facts, that say this is how the woman really feels.
  • Bill O’Reilly: The question is: Did Martin Luther King really think of America as a bad country or a good country? Did he despise it the way Jeremiah Wright does? Or did he respect it? And that question is very difficult to answer precisely.
  • Bill O’Reilly: I couldn’t get over the fact that there was no difference between Sylvia’s restaurant and any other restaurant in New York City. I mean, it was exactly the same, even though it’s run by blacks, primarily black patronship.
  • John Gibson: Do your duty. Make more babies [or] Twenty-five years and the majority of the population is Hispanic.

Then there is also Sean Hannity’s close association with neo-Nazi Hal Turner and proud bigot Andy Martin. And Fox News “broke” the false story of Barack Obama attending a Madrassa in his youth. This lead to accusations of Obama being a Muslim that persisted throughout the campaign. Fox also led the charge against Rev. Wright with barely concealed racial overtones. This list could go on and on.

The bottom line is that when a concerted campaign of distrust and disparagement, focused on racial hatred, is part and parcel of a major news enterprise, only a fool would fail to anticipate that it would instigate behavior like that described above. Sadly, I don’t see it receding much as Fox News continues to engage in their repugnant brand of pseudo-journalism, and they continue to employ the worst offenders.

Update: It isn’t only Fox News that is inciting threats: Sarah Palin blamed by the US Secret Service over death threats against Barack Obama.

“The Secret Service warned the Obama family in mid October that they had seen a dramatic increase in the number of threats against the Democratic candidate, coinciding with Mrs Palin’s attacks.”