Although Fred Phelps' Westboro Baptist Church is famous for picketing funerals because "God hates fags," for some reason Fox Nation has decided to call them a "left-wing cult." And did you know that Phelps is a Democrat? In Fox Nation he is. (H/T/ Aria) UPDATED
In a post called, "Bikers Turn Out to Protect Newtown Mourners from Westboro Baptist Church," Fox Nation captions its photo with, "Bikers Turn Out to Protect Newtown Mourners from Left-Wing Westboro Cult."
Later, it describes Phelps by saying, "Conservative bikers turned out yesterday to protect Newtown mourners from Democrat Fred Phelps and his Westboro cult from protesting."
In the first place, it's highly unlikely that Phelps is a Democrat. But even if he were, why is that relevant in this story?
As for “distraught”— Sorry, I was taking a lesson from you. I was projecting something I had no clue about. Distraught was probably too strong a word. Would upset or miffed work better for you?
I never said that Fox News was a reliable source for unbiased information. I did say I do not think Fox News hates Homosexuals, thinks all Muslims are terrorists and hates non-whites. There is no doubt that Fox News leans to the right based on their prime time line-up. I say again, it is ok to hate Fox News if you disagree with what they air, but it is not ok to make things up so you can hate them even more.
The quotes I gave you did not come from any website. They came from his book, in his own words.
When I hear your so called dog whistles here is what I see…
Hard working Americans— people who work hard to make a living and provide for their families.
Welfare recipients- people who need money because they aren’t making any, or not enough.
Founding fathers—- those who claimed independence, fought a war for it, won, and drafted our constitution and bill of rights.
It is you who is Projecting race into the words, not Fox.
I had thought you were saying that you were an unbiased observer who doesn’t watch Fox News. But you are citing fairly extreme talking points from them, specifically from the troubling attack work of Ed Klein and David Limbaugh. The two positions would not seem to be compatible.
Ok ok.. fox hates African Americans, gays, and whoever else they hate. You have proven that for sure. They have a clandestine plane to kill homo sexuals and rid the country of minorities. I got it now.
“I chose my friends carefully. The more politically active black students. The foreign students. The Chicanos. The Marxist professors and structural feminists.”
After college, Obama states that he lived on Manhattan’s Upper East Side, venturing to the East Village for what he called "the socialist conferences I sometimes attended at Cooper Union.
Ok I get it now. When someone says they are against gay marriage it actually means kill homosexuals and when someone says not all Muslims are terrorists it means the opposite. Thank you for the lesson in semantics.
I don’t believe that Fox News directly advocates the things you are discussing, but that was never the issue here. The issue was about the biased and extreme opinions that Fox is willing to encourage on its airwaves and on its website. These are positions that are based not on reason and on thought but on anger.
It’s strange to read a statement that if someone like Ann Coulter made an objectionable statement on Fox News, they would immediately be challenged by the host. I have very rarely seen such an occurrence. The usual approach is for an Ann Coulter or a Michelle Malkin to say something offensive, and for Sean Hannity to laugh along with them. Or Rush Limbaugh will say something over the top and Greta will nod sagely at him without discussing it. The very few times that someone has actually been called out for their behavior have actually been documented on this site. Please look at the archives here and you’ll find what little there is of such an event.
I’m honestly confused why you continue to parse over the semantics of Brian Kilmeade’s comments after multiple responses. Do you not understand the responses or do you simply wish to repeat your earlier statements? You seem to believe that my use of the phrase “dog whistle” is a problem. I don’t see why, given that it’s simply the latest phrase we’ve heard to discuss the way that right wing radio and Fox News work to express their opinions in an indirect manner. We gave you multiple examples of this, one of them being that any discussion of the immigration issue on Fox News is regularly accompanied by old video footage of people climbing over border walls or scrambling through the desert to enter the country. It’s a subtle way of reinforcing the viewers’ feelings that the matter is simply one of hordes of people overrunning the borders. We gave you the example that repeatedly giving Donald Trump a platform upon which to accuse the President of not being a citizen or conversely not being a good enough student sends a message to viewers, particularly ones who are predisposed to feel the same way. These are not “heavy accusations” and I do wonder why you think they are. These are facts, which this site has scrupulously documented over the last decade.
I agree with you that there are plenty of people who dislike Fox News on an emotional basis. Some of them have posted at this site, for obvious reasons. But the people who run this site, including Ellen, are actually doing a good job of keeping Fox accountable for its factual errors and its clear biases. They are trying to preserve the history of what is actually happening, and keep a record for posterity of the facts at hand. If they didn’t, in twenty years, one could imagine a mainstream news documentary obscuring the history of the Obama presidency by following the Fox News talking points that have been discredited here. We already must deal with people on a daily basis who get their information from Fox News and come to work with opinions about how President Obama somehow doesn’t respect the British or is somehow a secret Marxist. And this is the same, consistent problem we have seen when university students have conducted surveys of Fox News viewers. This is not a matter of “hating” Fox News or calling people liars, as you seem to want to do. This is a matter of understanding the historical record and learning from it.
I’ll assume that your reference to Marxism and socialism as regards our President is meant as humor and take that as such.
Have you read Obama’s book? In his own words he talks about about attending socialist functions and hobnobbing with Marxists. Many of his policies are socialist in nature, hence the references to communism, and socialism when discussing the president. The only times I have heard fascist and nazi is from Glenn back in reference to Obama, and Keith Olbermann in reference to Bush. They both are no longer with their respective networks. Those terms are thrown around by enemies of whoever is in office. It’s very unfortunate isn’t it?
Now I am glad we both agree that is ok to hate Fox News, but if it is because you you have been told that Fox News advocates killing homosexuals and holds the belief that all Muslims are terrorists, you are dreadfully misinformed.
How can you say that Brian Kilmead thinks that all Muslims are terrorists when he specifically said they are not. I agree completely that the second part of his quote is incorrect and offensive, but that does not mean he thinks all Muslims are terrorists. How does “not all Muslims are terrorists” not enter your semantics study?
You have the convenience of making some very heavy accusations without having to back them up. You say Fox News uses “dog whistles”… How convenient. You have fallen deeper in to the semantics “pitfall” much deeper than I have.
Fos News doesn’t need to come out and make a direct statement about any of these things, as I thought I had made very clear at least a day ago. But they can certainly make a series of comments, like Hannity’s repeated cries and like Juan Williams’ unfortunate statement about being uneasy when he sees Muslims on planes. It’s not hard to see a pattern, since the pattern is being intentionally woven. Does that mean that the management at Fox thinks every single Muslim is a terrorist? I don’t know that there is any way to prove such a thing, and personally I wouldn’t think it to be the case. But that doesn’t change a pattern of unfortunate comments and coverage about Muslims on Fox News, and I could easily understand why someone looking at the coverage would think that the Fox News position is that far off.
I’m not certain what Michelle Malkin thinks and I honestly don’t know that I ever will. Monica Crowley usually takes whatever is the standard talking point line for Fox News, so if they say that we should be wary of Muslims, she would normally go right along with that. But if you want to hear about someone who has said multiple offensive things in this area, why not discuss the works of Ann Coulter, who is a regularly welcomed guest on Fox? And it’s not the same as her appearances on other networks where she’s regularly challenged. The only time I saw her being directly challenged on her statements was in 2006, and she stomped off the show when it happened. She is normally treated with deference and warmth, even when saying completely outrageous and offensive things. (Keep in mind that she is famous for writing a column after 9/11 where she mused about invading Muslim countries, killing their leaders and converting them to Christianity.)
As slimy as Michelle, Monica, and Donald are, eveni they do not purport to hold the belief that all Muslims are terrorists, and homosexuals should be killed. Those were the accusations made.
Michelle Malkin has a regular spot on Hannity’s show, once a week, wherein she can be counted on to say extremely hateful comments. I don’t know of any other network that gives her a regular gig like that one, and doesn’t call her on her statements. Monica Crowley appears regularly on Fox, on multiple shows, and can be counted on to say at least one extreme or angry comment per appearance, and that’s on top of other comments she’s made in public that beg the question. No other network gives her such a platform. Laura Ingraham regularly appears and guest-hosts on O’Reilly’s show, and usually has an extreme or angry statement to make. Aside from her own radio show, I don’t know any other “news station” that gives her such a pulpit from which to make her case.
Donald Trump regularly phones in as a political commentator for Greta’s show – not as the host of Apprentice but as some kind of a political expert, which he is not. His usual routine is to immediately attack President Obama. He has no other political platform on any other network – and when he has made appearances elsewhere, he has been challenged on his statements and wound up not being able to substantiate them. On Fox, he rarely gets any more of a challenge than the gentlest of questions from Greta. Rush Limbaugh’s comments are regularly featured on Greta’s show, and she even interviews him at length once a year or so, during which time he may make the most extreme statements possible and still have no serious questions asked of him.
There is a big difference between having one of these people get interviewed on another network, and giving them a regular, unopposed platform on Fox News. There is a big difference between interviewing Newt Gingrich and trying to rehabilitate his statements after he makes them. There is a big difference between asking John Sununu questions about a campaign, and bringing him on specifically to attack President Obama in personal and offensive ways.
As for Tiller’s murderer, you should say that there is no direct evidence that he watched Fox. But what he showed in court was that he was woefully uninformed and misinformed on the issues, but was still convinced that Tiller was an evil person. Where did he hear this? That wasn’t a common belief, except by extremists who were spouting on some right wing radio shows and on Fox News. Granted, Fox News does act as an echo chamber for the right wing – things that Limbaugh talks about wind up on their shows, and the daily GOP talking points usually wind up as stories of the day. But that doesn’t change the fact that Bill O’Reilly regularly presented Dr. Tiller as an evil person and a killer. When Tiller was then murdered by a person saying the same things, it’s not hard to make the connection. Does that mean that O’Reilly put the gun in Roeder’s hand? No, and nobody said that it did. It means that O’Reilly bears some moral culpability for his behavior, and if he really believed in the morals to which he aspires, he would come clean and make a humble apology for his part in the situation.
I haven’t seen evidence of people thinking that anyone who is against the Cordoba mosque are bigots. I have seen evidence of Fox News and right wing radio trying to fan flames of bigotry against that mosque and cultural center. But that doesn’t mean that everyone who opposes it is a bigot. what Fox News has done has been to regularly present the point of view on multiple programs that the mosque should not be allowed to move forward. Yes, O’Reilly interviewed the Imam – as a way of dismissing his position. O’Reilly interviews all sorts of people, including athiests and any real extremist he can find, specifically so he can try to discredit them on camera. That’s part of the reason why people at this site recommend that guests of O’Reilly carefully do their homework before appearing there so they don’t get blindsided with a “gotcha” question that isn’t intended to do anything but befuddle them.
You’re correct that O’Reilly and Hannity and all the others are very good at getting attention. That’s why they get paid to host TV shows. But that’s not the issue. The issue is what they say while they are hosting those TV shows. And much of it has been proven to be incomplete, misleading or downright false. That’s the point of this site – showing clearly when the falsehoods are brought out, and remembering the history of those comments that others would prefer to forget.
As for the Fox News (and right wing radio) position on unions, you’re being very funny if you think they would one of their hosts would come out and openly state that “unions should be eliminated”. They use the dog whistle idea instead, where they regularly bring on guests who oppose unions, regularly champion situations where unions are being attacked, and regularly describe unions as thugs and bullies. They don’t have to directly say “let’s end unions” to present that point of view, and that’s the understanding we’ve been trying to bring you.
If you’ve been paying attention at all to the way unions have been portrayed on Fox, and then compared it to other networks, you’ll find that the discussion at Fox skews to the idea that workers don’t want or need to be in unions, that unions steal money from their members, and that unions control the Democrat party. The movement from GOP state legislatures has been to disempower unions whenever possible, by neutering them or defunding them in any way possible. The position at Fox News in every case of this (Wisconsin, Michigan, etc) has been to champion the GOP attack on the unions and to demonize the unions and their defenders. If you’re looking for them to make a direct thesis statement of this, then you’re once again falling into the semantic pitfall and missing the forest for the sake of a single tree.
There is no evidence that Tiller’s murderer even watched Fox.
Yes, killmead’s statement is offensive, but is not evidence of a belief that all Muslims are terrorists.
I included examples of Muslims who are against a Mosque near Ground Zero because people here like to tag anyone who is against it as a bigot.
I say again, that many of these controversial guests have been on other networks. Where is your outrage for them? I even think bill O’Reilly had on the Imam who wanted to build the Mosque near ground Zero. Using your logic I can say O’Reilly is for the Mosque.
O’Reilly is very good at garnering attention isn’t he? His comments on The View were not outrageous as Muslims did kill us on 9/11. Is that not true? Well, at least it got him more eyes pointed his way which is good for him. The thought of a Mosque being built so close to the site offended many people not just him.
Sean Hannity— “These people want to kill us!” He was referring to Muslim extremists. Is that not true? Muslim extremists want to convert everyone in the world, and kill any who refuse.
Unions—- tell me where fox has said unions need to be eliminated. many on the Network have supported the right to work without being forced to join a union, but I have heard no one say unions need to be eliminated.
Regarding the “All terrorists are Muslims” comment, and regarding Bill O’Reilly’s unfortunate statement on “The View”, you immediately fell into the semantic pitfall I was trying to have you avoid. Having watched the segment of “The View” again, I agree – O’Reilly didn’t say “The Muslims”. But he did say “Muslims killed us on 9/11” and it was as a direct support of his position that a mosque should not be allowed to be built. You can parse that one all you want, but you can’t talk your way out of the serious issue that this statement presents. As for Brian Kilmeade’s really scary statement of “Not all Muslims are terrorists, but all terrorists are Muslims”, your attempted defense of it is truly puzzling. Do you not understand that this isn’t just an untrue statement, but an offensive one?
As for your attempted false dilemma of what to say about Muslims who condem the actions of the extremists who committed terror attacks on 9/11, that’s an irrelevant question. Of course there are Muslims who are disgusted by murderous behavior – by anyone, but particularly by people who purport to represent their faith and do not. By the same idea, there are plenty of Baptists who will condemn the Westboro Baptists for their behavior too. Doesn’t make any of them bigots. It means that they are morally disgusted by the behavior of a few arrogant people who insist they are speaking for an entire religion or even for a diety. And Muslims who condemn the 9/11 attackers are joined by people of every other faith who condemned them as murderers. That’s not the same thing as Brian Kilmeade saying that all the terrorists are Muslims, or as Bill O’Reilly trying to defend a bigoted position with a statement that was so outrageous that it motivated people to walk off the set of The View.
By the way, if you actually watch the O’Reilly clip, you’ll see that it wasn’t just what he said that caused the problem. It was how he did it. He wasn’t just calmly, dispassionately opining “You know, Muslims killed us on 9/11, and let’s discuss that…” He was yelling at the women on the couch with him, trying to shout them down while he ranted about the mosque. There’s a bit of a difference between the two thoughts, as I’m sure you’ll understand.
Regarding your apparent non-perception of the bigotry on display at Fox News, you really should look at the archives of this site, as well as at the archives at various other sites that keep track of this stuff – particularly Fairness and Accuracy in Reporting. If you don’t see the problem of Sean Hannity’s repeated, angry declamations of “these people want to kill us!”, if you don’t see a problem with a network repeatedly bringing on and spotlighting people like Ed Klein and Wayne Allyn Root, if you don’t see the nastiness regularly being stated by Michelle Malkin and Monica Crowley on the network, then perhaps you may want to think about whether you’re in agreement with their statements and behavior. This isn’t a matter of just having controversial guests. This is a matter of bringing these people on and encouraging them in their beliefs or rehabilitating them when they get into trouble.
Do you think it’s just a coincidence that Fox News repeatedly has had Donald Trump on, and that he has repeatedly stated hateful and untrue things about the President with little or no challenge? Do you think it’s just a coincidence that when the immigration matter is discussed, Fox News almost always backgrounds that with the same two stock shots of people climbing over border walls sometime in the past 20 years? (Thomas is correct to note that they did this during the DREAM Act discussion, but they also do this whenever the general issue is discussed on Hannity or O’Reilly.)
You state that having extremists guests on like various preachers who have said offensive things, or having various “experts” who have said offensive things on or off the air doesn’t mean that Fox News supports those positions. But that’s not the issue. Fox News supports the people holding those positions, and by giving them a regular soapbox on which to appear, they validate what those people stand for. Between that, and the many comments that do get made on the air, you have the “dog whistle” of the right signals being sent out to the people watching the programming. You must be able to see that Fox having multiple people on discussing President Obama’s birth certificate as a serious issue sends a reinforcing message to viewers who are disposed to think him illegitimate. You must be able to see that Fox repeatedly having John Sununu go on the air and call the President unintelligent and lazy sends a reinforcing message to viewers disposed to think that. Viewers who weren’t pre-disposed to think that start to believe that these are legitimate questions to be asked rather than crank questions formed not from logic but from anger.
Regarding your comment about “union thuggery”, I strongly recommend you actually research the issue. The Fox News and right wing position is that unions are thugs and that we don’t need them. This flies completely in the face of the history of unions in this country. Without unions, you get the race to the bottom we’ve been seeing across the world, and you’d never have seen workers earn the right to a decent workweek, decent pay and decent benefits. You talk about people being forced to join a union, without mentioning that even in businesses where the union membership is stated as compulsory, it’s entirely possible for people to opt out via financial core. The reason why the union is covering all the workers in that business is to give them a unified voice to be able to receive a living wage, a pension, a health plan, etc. Under your scenario of the workers opting out completely, those workers would be working for much less, making a significantly worse living and undercutting all the other employees. Of course, your idea of “thuggery” might be the edited videos presented by right wing comedian Steven Crowder when he went to Michigan to provoke union demonstrators. In that case, you could look at the longer videos put up by other people at the same event to see the problem with his version of events.
The comments you quote from the Muslim Canadian Congress are their opinion, and they are entitled to have them. But not all Muslims agree with them – and I’m sure there are many people who would have issue with the sinister comment made about possible Saudi involvement with the mosque. That statement, about the mosque being a “slap in the face of Americans” if there is any Saudi funding, would seem to imply that ALL Saudis are responsible for the 9/11 attacks, and not just the murderers who planned and executed them. (And this is the implication made when the idea is brought up on Fox News) And that takes us back to where we started in this part of the thread. If you believe that it would be incorrect to hold the entire religion responsible for the actions of a few extremists, then why do you think it is acceptable to quote a statement that holds an entire nation responsible for the same thing?
For example, you say that Fox News thinks “Jews are destroying America” because they have had a guest on that said that on a website. Yet you say they support Pam Geller who is Jewish. Not to mention Rupert Murdoch’s mother is Jewish and Newscorp’s second in command, Peter Chernin, is Jewish.
How does having a guest on that advocates killing homosexuals mean that Fox News supports killing Homosexuals? Do you have a link to that piece? I would love to hear the exchange between the interviewer and the guest if the matter being discussed was killing homosexuals. Heck, I cannot even take that claim at face value as you did not provide any evidence.
What lies were spread about the occupy movement?
Bill O’Reilly did not make up “tiller the baby killer”. That man had it in his head to kill Tiller long before Bill O’Reilly brought it up. Pro-life groups branded the name, Tiller the Baby Killer. Here is a quote from police….
Union thuggery does exist. Forcing people to join a union when they do not want to is thuggery itself.
I will give you the Mosque “at” ground zero argument. But even some Muslims were against it being built so close…
Neda Bolourchi, whose mother was murdered during the 9/11 attacks, wrote in the Washington Post:
Raheel Raza and Tarek Fatah, boardmembers of the Muslim Canadian Congress, wrote in the Ottawa Citizen:
So what gives Imam Feisal Abdul Rauf of the “Cordoba Initiative” and his cohorts the misplaced idea that they will increase tolerance for Muslims by brazenly displaying their own intolerance in this case?
Do they not understand that building a mosque near Ground Zero is equivalent to permitting a Serbian Orthodox church near the killing fields of Srebrenica where 8,000 Muslim men and boys were slaughtered?
There are many questions that we would like to ask. Questions about where the funding is coming from? If this mosque is being funded by Saudi sources, then it is an even bigger slap in the face of Americans, as nine of the jihadis in the Twin Tower calamity were Saudis. […]
As for those teary-eyed, bleeding-heart liberals such as New York mayor Michael Bloomberg and much of the media, who are blind to the Islamist agenda in North America, we understand their goodwill.
Unfortunately for us, their stand is based on ignorance and guilt, and they will never in their lives have to face the tyranny of Islamism that targets, kills and maims Muslims worldwide, and is using liberalism itself to destroy liberal secular democratic societies from within.—
I will take your unwarranted comments about my age as compliment. I feel so old these days. I’m no spring chicken. It’s nice to be called young.
BTW, I am not angry, I couldn’t care less about Fox News. Cannot even watch it. But it is not right to spread lies. I have googled and tried to find an instance where that was said, but I cannot find it. People here have made that accusation, so obviously they know where to find it. If such claims are made, they need to be backed up. If not, it does a great disservice to the readers of this site. The Mantra of this site is “We watch so you don’t have to”. I dont think it’s too much to ask for evidence when such a claim is made.
In less than five seconds, a Google search gave me a link to Brian Kilmeade on Fox News on October 11, 2010 saying “Not all Muslims are terrorists but all terrorists are Muslims”. This was in follow-up to Bill O’Reilly’s appearance on The View wherein he said “The Muslims killed us on 9/11”. Now, if you want to play semantic games about that statement, that’s your issue. But the intent is quite clear. Randolph Lin was fairly open in court when he told the judge that he got his information on these matters from Fox News. Fox News has repeatedly painted Muslims as extremists, as dangerous and as generally scary. You could look at any number of discussions held by the folks at Fox and Friends, by O’Reilly and by Hannity, not to mention Huckabee. Did they say the exact words “All Muslims are Killers”? Personally, I don’t know that there’s an exact statement in that order – but I do know that Hannity has repeatedly made comments about how “these people want to kill us” – I’ve heard him do so more times than I can count over the past two years alone.
As for Bill O’Reilly’s repeated attacks on George Tiller, they were a regular drumbeat in which O’Reilly called the doctor a killer and a murderer and did everything he could to advocate against him. Tiller’s murderer, Scott Roeder, was forced to admit in court that he had no expertise in abortion or medical issues, which pretty clearly shows that he was getting his information from whatever media was talking to him about Tiller.
In fairness, Tiller’s clinic had been attacked before, both physically and in right wing media. Roeder had a history of contemplating and attempting such attacks, including one involving explosives. But that doesn’t get O’Reilly off the hook for repeatedly fanning the flames of the idea. Can O’Reilly be directly charged with this? Of course not. But does he hold moral culpability for making inflammatory comments about a person who was later murdered, with the murderer citing the same language? Judge that one for yourself.
Obsessing with semantics does not change the proven fact that Fox News viewers have been shown to have signficantly less information or wrong information about politics, national affairs and world affairs than viewers of other channels that don’t present such a blatant right wing bias. For many of them, this leads to nonsense like the person who told me last night that Hillary Clinton is faking her blood clot – a statement based on hatred of her and her husband, and built from multiple right wing radio hosts and Fox News hosts opining in that direction. It leads to people thinking that Saddam Hussein planned 9/11, when that was never the case. It leads to people musing about President Obama’s birth certificate even after they’ve seen both the short and long forms of the document. Not because they have any facts but because they hate the man and their hate is being validated by venues like Fox News.
For most people, the problem stops there, and sites like NewsHounds are a good antidote, since they can immediately point out the bias and contradictions being demonstrated by advocates like O’Reilly, Hannity and Huckabee. When you get to the more extreme people, like Lin, like Roeder, or the fringe groups like Westboro Baptist, there’s nothing you can do other than try to understand how they could have got it so upside down. Westboro Baptist is so far off the edge that even Sean Hannity condemned them on the air, which takes some doing. On that same program, Alan Colmes did the same thing. The point that was being made here, which you’re sidestepping with the semantics, is that Fox Nation tried to dredge these guys up and call them left wing, and such a desperate smear attempt deserves to be called out for what it is.
If you think Fox News is responsible for the arson committed by a crazy man who when caught, tried to pass the buck because he says Fox News told him to, then please show me where Fox has advocated such behavior. Calling someone a baby killer does not mean go kill someone. Please show me where Bill O’Reilly told anyone or advocated murder in any way. Why have no charges been brought against Fox News and bill O’Reilly?