Leave it to Fox News to spin Shaquille O’Neal’s claim that he is retiring from "celebrity-ness" into a declaration that he “doesn’t want to be part of this leftist viewpoint that this country is racist, that this country is a country that oppressed others.”
Leo Terrell, the “civil rights attorney” whose MAGA-fication has earned him a Fox News contributorship, either doesn’t know that NBA great O’Neal is very much a supporter of Black Lives Matter or else just made up the claim that O’Neal was sending some kind of coded message in his interview with the New York Post.
Here’s what O’Neal told the Post:
“These celebrities are going freaking crazy and I don’t want to be one. I denounce my celebrity-ness today. I’m done with it,” O’Neal told The Post, while discussing his new campaign with Kellogg’s.
“All my life, everyone probably gets stereotyped, but us celebrities, we get stereotyped because most of these celebrities are out of their mind. I don’t do that. I’m a regular person that listened, followed his dreams and made it,” he said.
“I want people to say, ‘Bro, he’s nice. He didn’t have an entourage. His people didn’t take my phone because I took a picture and threw it.'”
In fact, as the Post noted (as did Terrell and Fox host Steve Doocy), O’Neal is known as a nice guy.
But Terrell, who surely knows the path to Fox News hits is to play the race card, did exactly that when he appeared on Fox & Friends this morning and came up with this unique, albeit hardly credible analysis for Doocy:
TERRELL: He’s always going to be a celebrity but what he’s doing, he is sending a coded message to the left, to the celebrity left. He doesn’t want to be part of this leftist viewpoint that this country is racist, that this country is a country that oppressed others. Steve, Shaq O’Neal is the American dream. He is the person who has benefitted from America, and he doesn’t hate the police. Shaq is a deputy reserve [officer]. When you listen to the left, everything about America is bad, the police are bad. And what he is trying to tell the celebrity left is, I don’t want to be part of your attack on this country. That’s just a coded message and I applaud him for saying it. He’s doing it in a very diplomatic way.
FACT CHECK: O’Neal publicly supported the Black Lives Matter protests last year. Although he denounced violence and looted, he explicitly endorsed the movement, saying, e.g., “Everybody’s tired. We demand justice. You know, they try to appease us by arresting one guy, well it was four officers out there and I think people are just sick and tired.” And while he didn’t endorse player protests during the national anthem, he also signaled that he supported the overall message, just not the vehicle. Saying he “’would try to do it much bigger’ by holding large press conferences, like past sports icons who were successful at social activism,” as USA Today’s For The Win reported.
But Doocy offered no challenge to Terrell, thus letting the distorted picture stand.
So Terrell went on to say that O’Neal is “doing what others are afraid to do because they don’t want to get canceled,” because “You cannot cancel Shaquille O’Neal.”
You can watch Terrell's crackpot, racist commentary and its tacit validation by Doocy, all bankrolled by the Murdochs, below, from the September 28, 2021 Fox & Friends.
While I’m not wishing or hoping anything, I am doubtful that even locking the Floridiot up will put a cap on it at this stage. This cult will only be put out of its misery when he dies, and only then if no credible successor has taken control.