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Fox News Again Aids Catholic League's Attack Against Empire State Building

Reported by Ellen - June 13, 2010 -

Co-authored by Hula

Fox News opinionator Liz Trotta was on America's News HQ this morning to attack the Empire State Building for refusing to honor the 100 year anniversary of the birth of Catholic icon and humanitarian Mother Teresa. The so-called owner of the building, Anthony Malkin (he’s actually the head of a group of investors who own it) has said the building recognizes Easter, Eid al Fitr, Hanukkah, and Christmas, with themed lighting, and, "As a privately owned building, ESB has a specific policy against any other lighting for religious figures or requests by religions and religious organizations.” But to Trotta, there could be only one reason, Malkin's "radical chic," leftist, anti-Catholic, pro-abortion prejudices. Not that Trotta had any real proof beyond the fact that Malkin has contributed to what she called “pro abortion” groups.

Host Eric Shawn framed the issue by suggesting in his introduction that Mother Teresa was being unfairly, irrationally singled out and rejected.

Here's a riddle: What do King Kong actress Fay Wray, the Simpsons, and Frank Sinatra have in common? They've all been honored in lights in one of America's most recognizable icons, the Empire State Building. Even communist China got a nod, there it is, on the 60th anniversary, as the building was lit up; in China's red and yellow. The one person who is not getting that recognition is Mother Teresa, to mark the hundredth birthday, her hundredth birthday which is this coming August. Well that refusal coming from Anthony Malkin, his family owns the Empire State Building, and that set off a firestorm of criticism and controversy, including scathing words from the President of the Catholic League, Bill Donohue.

By trotting out Trotta, “fair and balanced” Fox News did its part to make the case for the Catholic League but, other than some mild pushback from Shawn, left no room for any differing opinions, much less an opposing one. This is at least the second time Fox has gone to bat for the Catholic League in this matter. Donohue has long been given favorable treatment on Fox despite his history of intolerance and extremism.

Trotta said, “These liberal iconic newspapers didn’t want to get too near to this story because the reverberations and implications are just a little too much the left to handle.” Neither she nor Shawn seemed to feel a need to explain how she “knew” that - or even what handling the "reverberations and implications" might require. She went on to say that the building had dimmed its lights when Pope John Paul and Cardinal O’Connor died as some kind of proof that Malkin had lied. In fact, that kind of contradicted Trotta’s contention that Malkin has it in for Catholics. It was a point Shawn missed.

Trotta went on to say that even though the building is privately owned, it’s a public trust and, therefore, should be subject to – what? Trotta’s say so? The demands of any and all religious groups? Or just the religious groups she approves of? She continued, “Mr Malkin has contributed to several, what they like to call 'reproductive rights groups,’ and that is pro-abortion groups.” Noting that Mother Teresa was strongly anti-abortion, Trotta concluded, “That may be… just a simple, old, rusty leftist's prejudice.” She added, “Anti-Catholic bigotry...well that's not new, I mean, especially in New York, it's still the last bastion of acceptable prejudice… Even more than that, it's the radical chic angle of the political left."

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