While eagerly whining that cultural sensitivity among college students is really a sign of liberal intolerance, Fox & Friends totally missed how their latest target, the unofficial advice on non-racist Halloween costumes, written by OSU students, is satire!
On last Sunday’s Fox & Friends, cohost Abby Huntsman began: “Is your Halloween costume offensive? If you’re not sure, the good students at Ohio State have provided a flow chart to help you find out.”
Cohost David Webb informed us, “The student run magazine ‘1870’ warns against wearing headdresses if you’re white but says costumes making fun of President Trump are fair game.” By the way, Webb, a conservative African-American had no problem with Tea Party signs depicting Barack Obama as an African witch-doctor.
Cohost Pete Hegseth introduced Cabot Phillips, media director for Campus Reform, a group formed to “smash left wing scum” on college campuses and funded by the Virginia-based, right-wing “Leadership Institute.” Predictably, it’s a Fox fave.
In December of 2016, Phillips, a Liberty University grad, promoted a bogus story about how liberal college students want to “ban Christmas,” a lie that underscored Fox’s own bogus “war on Christmas” narrative.
In line with Fox's perpetual conservative victimhood, Phillips asserted that the students have “created a hierarchy of oppression,” which was laughable. He continued with what could have been a description of Fox:
PHILLIPS: Universities and administrators have convinced students that it’s not about who’s right, who’s factual, it’s about who can say they’re the most offended, who can claim offense to the most things and then move them up this hierarchy on college campuses. So, naturally, students are gonna look for anything they can claim to say that they are more offended because that gives them special status. On the left and on college campuses, that’s what’s rewarded. Not about who’s right, who is the most offended.
Webb accused students of “turning this into a social justice agenda, ignoring real, real problems.”
According to Phillips, having a culturally sensitive costume guide is an example of “free speech being stifled on campus.” (A campus that neither he nor the pals are part of.)
The gang referenced the chart which has the audacity to recommend dressing as Donald Trump. Hegseth said, “If it doesn’t make fun of Trump, then you better be careful who you’re making fun of because if it doesn’t check a certain set of boxes, then you’re wrong.”
Webb asked if a white liberal could dress up as Barack Obama.
Chuckles all around when Phillips wouldn’t “go there.” He whined about how, according to the guide, you can make fun of conservatives, but not liberals: “It’s a complete controlling of thought on campuses, no free expression.”
Hegseth closed the segment by telling Phillips, “Keep scouring those campus publications for us.”
Then they teased their next whine: Saturday Night Live making fun of Kellyanne Conway.
FACT CHECK: Although it is staffed by OSU students and directed toward the OSU student community, “1870” is run by a private media group (not “student run”). The chart is satire, not an official directive. (Don’t dress as Pepe the Frog!) But who needs facts when there’s propaganda (about intolerant liberal students) to pimp!
Addendum: The official OSU newspaper, “The Lantern,” called out Fox for its misrepresentation of the chart and the false claim, on Fox News Insider, that “1870” is affiliated with the school.
Watch the video from the October 15, 2017 Fox & Friends below.
Webb’s silly question exemplifies a right-winger not being able to pull off ironic humor. Webb’s jest wasn’t included in the magazine’s satirical chart because it was even less funny than the rest of the chart appeared to be (sorry, chart makers—I wouldn’t be surprised if the Fox staff didn’t present the funniest parts of your chart). Right-wing humor is too often limited to hyperbolic, contemptuous humor (see T. Carlson’s sneering laughter). Even if a hyperbolic joke is an obvious exaggeration, it can create space for lesser-in-degree exaggeration to be taken as fact. Note how Cabot Phillips seamlessly moves from satire to assertion of fact. Hey Cabot, get off your duff reading free college rags and do the hard research to show us a specific example of a student who thinks Halloween costumes are “violence against them”? Whatever victimization that is being suffered by conservatives and other particular groups pales in comparison to victimization of truth by Fox & its radio friends.
We don’t hear any comments from this joker regarding that Witch who mocked African-Americans at this hostile workplace environment.