Race-Baiting on Fox, ‘Over and Over and Over Again’

The anti-racism Color of Change organization has sent out an email blast (8/30/09) warning that “more and more, right-wing talkshow hosts are bringing race-based fear mongering into the mainstream.”

Still, they claim that “Fox‘s Glenn Beck just took it to another level” with his July 28 statement that “this president has exposed himself as a guy over and over and over again who has a deep-seated hatred for white people…. This guy is, I believe, a racist.”

It’s part of a larger argument Beck has been making: that President Obama is using the White House to serve the needs of black communities at white people’s expense. This kind of talk stirs up fear, hate and it can lead to violence….

Glenn Beck is appealing to the worst in America. Of course, some people refuse to accept the fact that our president is black or the idea that he could truly serve all Americans. We know that. The only way these views will fade away is if they’re not reinforced by mainstream society. Instead, folks like Glenn Beck, Lou Dobbs and Rush Limbaugh are exploiting racism and race-based fear to bump their ratings, stirring up racial discord in the process.

The dangers of these tactics are real. We saw the same dynamic during the presidential race: By the end, the McCain/Palin campaign was unable to control the violent energy whipped up by their race-baiting. The result was an unprecedented number of threats on Obama’s life, a rise in the number of hate groups and an increase in the number of threats and crimes against immigrants and black people.

Fully aware that “Fox has had a long history of race-baiting and racism on its shows,” Color of Change insists that “Glenn Beck appears to be taking the network to an even lower standard. He’s trying to divide and distract America when we should be coming together and talking about issues that really matter–like healthcare and the economy.”

See the recent FAIR magazine Extra!: “Glenn Beck Is No Howard Beale: He’s Mad Like a Fox, and Wants to Take Us In” (6/09) by Steve Rendall.