The Fox and the Hound

I hope that Scott Wiener’s bravery isn’t forgotten by year’s end.

The San Francisco Board of Supervisors member struck a blow for common sense on July 13, when he pushed back against Fox’s efforts to exploit the tragic murder of Kate Steinle, whose alleged killer was reportedly an undocumented immigrant who returned to the United States after numerous deportations. In a moment of uncommon valor, Wiener reaffirmed the reality that Fox is a propaganda outlet posing as a news network:

Fox saw [Steinle’s murder] as an opportunity to point the blame at the Board Of Supervisors for making San Francisco a “sanctuary city” that does not actively seek the deportation of undocumented immigrants. Or, as Wiener put it, [Fox] is trying to “take advantage of a horrific crime to bash immigrants.”

When [Fox] finally ambushed him in the hallway, Wiener knew what he was going to do. He didn’t want to answer the questions because he knew [Fox] was not going to make a good faith effort to cover the issue. He didn’t want to just duck his head and hide, because he knew how that looked on TV. So he addressed [Fox] directly: “Fox News is not real news. And you’re not a real reporter.”

Steinle’s death is indeed a tragedy, and her alleged killer should be prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law for it. However, one can’t help wondering: if an undocumented Irish immigrant in Boston or New York had committed a horrific murder, would Fox cover it as intensely as it has covered this murder, which involves an undocumented immigrant from Mexico?

Next year marks the twentieth anniversary of Fox’s cable debut. Think about how many friendships have been shattered because of Fox’s inflammatory influence. Think about how many family members no longer speak to each other because Fox has poisoned the minds of relatives. Think about the extent to which partisan hatred has increased in the United States due to the machinations of Murdoch and the amorality of Ailes. Then, ask yourself: why don’t more politicians declare that Fox is not real news, and its reporters are not real reporters?

UPDATE: More from the Young Turks.

D.R. Tucker

D. R. Tucker is a Massachusetts-based journalist who has served as the weekend contributor for the Washington Monthly since May 2014. He has also written for the Huffington Post, the Washington Spectator, the Metrowest Daily News, investigative journalist Brad Friedman's Brad Blog and environmental journalist Peter Sinclair's Climate Crocks.