If anyone wonders why the #BlackLivesMatter movement has targeted Fox News for a protest this week, just check out how Fox News Sunday handled a year-in-review discussion about race today. It included Fox’s Jason Riley accusing black protesters of not wanting to be “post racial” and repeated suggestions that the only black deaths of concern are the ones caused by black people.
Riley appeared in the role of what I call the designated African American black attacker. As Karoli wrote at Crooks and Liars, Riley makes his living bashing black people. His presence as the sole African American on the panel guaranteed racial attacks on blacks, camouflaged the omission of a more mainstream African American perspective – at the same time that it gave Fox News the fig leaf behind which to hide its race-baiting designs.
So surely host Chris Wallace knew more or less what he’d be getting when he asked Riley, “With an African-American president in a country that some people said was post-racial, how do you explain the fact that we’re having this debate over race and the criminal justice system and it’s still so raw?”
Riley performed just as expected.
RILEY: Well, part of it is that the left has no interest in being post-racial. I think they pretend to want to be post-racial, but they practice identity politics, which is divvying us up by race and gender and sexual orientation, and then making specific appeals based on those characteristics.
So, I think this whole notion that the left wants to be post-racial is false. And this is, I think demonstrates that. What we see with this false narrative being pushed in the wake of the Garner and the Ferguson incidents.
The problem is not police shooting black men. That is not what is driving the homicide rate in this country. It is non-police shootings of black men that is driving the homicide rate, yet we have protesters all over this country pushing a false narrative and everyone from the president on down refusing to simply correct the record here.
Not one person on the set, including Wallace, challenged Riley on such hate-mongering, bigoted statements. Furthermore, as Karoli also noted, the "black on black" crime talking point has been debunked over and over and over again.
Wallace did immediately turn to panelist Bob Woodward for comment on a poll showing that only 22 percent of blacks think they face equal treatment by the police as whites. “Bob, this is a continuing problem,” Wallace said. To his credit, Woodward said, “Well, of course it is. It’s real.” But that was pretty weak sauce compared to what Riley had just dished out.
Wallace turned to another bit of outsourced race baiting, this time via a viewer question. I have previously written about how Fox News Sunday “just happens” to choose questions that promote Fox’s agenda. This one was a doozy. And check out how Wallace validated it to panelist Susan Page of USA Today:
WALLACE: We asked you for questions for the panel and we got this on Facebook, from Tammy Korol, who wrote, “Why is it all we ever get told is that the police community must be retrained to learn how to deal with black communities but no one has ever introduced the concept of the black community being trained to be law abiding, productive, respectful citizens?”
Susan, that’s pretty tough talk, but to get back—and I’m sure some people will be offended by it—but it is the view of a lot of people, and to get back to what Jason said, the biggest threat to young black men doesn’t come from the cops. It comes from other young black men.
Page replied that, “It’s possible to criticize police tactics that target African-American men inappropriately” and still honor the police force for all the good that they do. But, like Woodward, she never acknowledged the race-baiting Fox was engaging in.
Even so, Riley jumped back in to racially attack African Americans:
RILEY: Clearly, there is excess force used by police in some instances. But that is not producing this high black body count in this country.
Tension between the black community and the police department stems from black criminality in this country, high black crime rates. Blacks are about 13 percent of the population but commit more than half of all murders in this country. Blacks are arrested at two to three times their number in the population for all manner of violent crime, all manner of property crime.
Until that ends, you are going to have tensions between the police and the black community. You are going to have young black men viewed suspiciously.
If we want to address perceptions, negative perceptions of young black men, we have to address the behavior that is driving those perceptions, and that is not a conversation President Obama or Eric Holder or Al Sharpton or all the rest want to have because they have a vested interest in pushing a false narrative, which is that racism is an all-purpose explanation of what drives what’s wrong in Black America.
If Fox News thinks that pointing to dead African Americans killed by other African Americans is an indication that they think black lives matter – while using those black deaths to distract from the wrongful ones by the police - well, tell that to the protesters on Friday, guys.
Watch it below, from today's Fox News Sunday.
I do hope, however, that the protesters remain calm and collected, firm and above all non-violent. The most effective protests during the civil rights years were the ones where people did precisely that. All the RWingers want is an excuse and we should deny them that satisfaction.
Well then why is this term is never used when whites commit acts of violence of mass murder with assault weapons, school shootings or those anti government loons who aim their rifles or have shootouts with law enforcement?
Usually the only terms we get from the right wing media is that they’re described as mentally deranged or have a history of mental illness. And never mind they were still able to get these guns because we’re also told that now is not the time to talk about guns. Never once is race a thought or mentioned.
As for Riley— I’m sure he, like every other black man in this country, has been stopped for no good reason by police, passed by taxicabs, and etc, even in his fancy suit in front of the WSJ building. His explanation for that would be that all those nasty other black people have understandably caused white people and especially police to view all black people with suspicion.
You have to have a tiny bit of pity for somebody so overloaded with self-hatred.
Why would anyone be surprised that electing the first black president wasn’t going to change racial prejudice? All anyone had to do was read what the Rush Limbaugh’s of the world had to say as soon as he took office. I can’t wait for the protests at FOX news HQ this Friday. It’s about time.
We are waiting to hear the Moorpean talk about blacks who were falsely accused, and sent to prison for decades, only to find out that they were innocent all this time, and released.
NOTE TO MOORPEAN RILEY
How many members of your own family have criminal records? Or should our media partners investigate that little story.
His right-wing cred ain’t gonna do the Tom any good when the cops see a “colored boy” without ID wandering around a “nice” (ie, white) neighborhood).