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Fox Nation Promotes Xenophobic Video? Really?

Reported by Priscilla - May 22, 2009 -

Webster defines xenophobia as “fear and hatred of strangers or foreigners or of anything that is strange or foreign.” There is a strong element of this fear and hatred in today’s conservative, republican right wing – a fear and hatred that is nourished by the nativist (defined as favoring native inhabitants as opposed to immigrants) rantings of Fox’s stable of hate mongers Bill O’Reilly (who mourns the demise of the white, Christian, male power structure), Sean Hannity, and Glenn Beck. So it isn’t surprising, given the anti-immigrant and anti-foreign (those damned French!) sentiments of the GOP “base”, that Fox Nation would be stoking the fires of xenophobia. What is interesting is that, rather than headlining their xenophobic material, the Fox Nation, without an incendiary headline, merely directs its readers to a video that reflects that fear and hatred of strangers or foreigners – a sentiment that would appear to be a core value in the Fox Nation.

The last link, on the Fox Nation lede, says “watch this video.” The non descriptive link was last used during the bogus Notre Dame “controversy” when Fox Nation asked its readers what they thought of a video which was not described and which linked to the Notre Dame student protest group. Whoops, they’ve done it again with a link to a video that reinforces the prejudices and narrow world view of the citizens of Fox Nation which is obviously a place where foreign languages and people are feared and hated. The video, which Fox Nation is pimping, is titled “Press One for English” and features Ron and Kay Rivoli (whose photos on their website are straight out of Altman’s “Nashville” or maybe Hee-Haw, or maybe PTL, or maybe a 70’s “adult” flick) singing about how “English is the language of these United States.” The lyrics and visuals are sure to get those nativist juices flowing in the Fox Nation – lots of flags (one which has a cross effect), photos of Ron and Kay’s relatives who fought for the freedom to be stupid, and old photos of acceptable immigrants in English classes. And just to let you know that Ron and Kay know their American history, they throw in a photo of Teddy Roosevelt with a TR quote about how there is only room for one flag and one language. (Yes, TR and Lou Dobbs would have been soul brothers on immigration. TR wrote this quote in a letter to the American Defense Society a group whose xenophobic principles would be embraced by Fox Nation. It subsidized the first American edition of the Protocols of the Elders of Zion.) TR was, however, an early proponent of environmentalism – something not embraced by today’s GOP “base.” The video ended with Kay’s dismay over having to push one for English. Hardeharhar!

Comment: This video is perfect propaganda for the xenophobic Fox Nation -hatred and fear of non English speakers couched in icons of American patriotism and put to music by the patriotic Rivolis. Who cares if you work hard, obey the law, and pay your taxes? If ya don’t speak English, fagetaboutit!!! Ron and Kay, on the other hand, are good Americans who don’t live in China or Mexico. (they’re not big on subtlety!) But here’s the thing. When Ron and Kay (who play in recreational vehicle parks) performed “Press one for English” at a Florida law enforcement dinner, in 2007, people were quite offended. Not only were there several Hispanic law enforcement officers in attendance; but the nearby community relies on immigrant labor. A former Tampa police officer said, "It was definitely appalling to many of the people who were there. One of the things that makes us great is our diverse community." But this kind of shtick is perfect for Fox Nation. It’s a simple piece of right wing nastiness that doesn’t deal in the complexities of the situation – such as how ESL classes are being eliminated due to lack of funding or how language lines assist businesses in reaching out to more customers (which makes them more profitable, duh!). Foreign language lines are vital, for many, in accessing health care. Ron and Kay are such American patriots; but I wonder if they realize that the older relatives of many of our service personnel might not speak English. But, “Hey you’re the one who chose to come now choose to speak English.” We live in a global community; but Fox Nation is an xenophobic enclave where foreigners are hated and feared. Sure makes me glad to live in the diverse USA! But about Ron and Kay – are they the basis for the SNL skit featuring Clancy T Bachleratt and Jackie Snad; because if so they should stick to singing about toddlers, beer jars, and spaceships!

But as they say on Fox Nation – Watch This Video!

P.S. I couldn't get into the comments section of the Fox Nation thread, so please post your favorites. Gracias!