ColorOfChange Promotes "Turn Off Fox" Campaign
Fox News Channel has presented biased, and often racially-fueled, comments and messages disguised as "real news." FNC hosts Bill Oâ€™Reilly and Sean Hannity were two of the first news anchors to air deceptively edited and incomplete video of then-USDA employee Shirley Sherrodâ€™s controversial remarks to the NAACP last month.
[On The Media]
ColorOfChange.org, the community activist group that has successfully urged dozens of advertisers to pull away from Glenn Beckâ€™s FoxÂ News Channel show, has announced a new initiative directed at discouraging public establishments across the country from airing FNC.
The campaign, dubbed â€œTurn off Foxâ€, will attempt to educate the public of the divisive rhetoric and dishonest smear campaigns conveyed by the channel, while reducing the number of televisions broadcasting it in public domains-- including restaurants, bars, airport terminals and gyms.
ColorOfChange.org has started calling on its 600,000-plus members to sign a petition asking businesses and other public establishments not to be a conduit for the race-baiting and distortions put forth by Fox News Channel.
Members who sign up to support the campaign are then encouraged to take to the streets and work with businesses to reduce Foxâ€™s influence in their own communities and across the country. Active members will be given the opportunity to approach public establishments in their area that have been known to broadcast the channel during working hours, explaining to them why they should not subject their patrons to the network's attempts to stoke fear, hate and division.
â€œThe case against Fox News Channel is easy to make - no legitimate news organization consistently wages smear campaigns based on lies and race-baiting,â€ said James Rucker, executive director of ColorOfChange.org.
Â â€œBut for years, Fox News Channel has done exactly that, and the pattern has only gotten worse since President Obama entered the White House. Our campaign gives people a way to demand that businesses that serve the public not force Fox Newsâ€™s divisive propaganda on their customers.â€
ColorOfChange.orgâ€™s campaign comes after a number of incidents in which Fox News Channel has presented biased, and often racially-fueled, comments and messages disguised as "real news."
Fox News Channel hosts Bill Oâ€™Reilly and Sean Hannity were two of the first news anchors to air deceptively edited and incomplete video of then-USDA employee Shirley Sherrodâ€™s controversial remarks to the NAACP last month.
The video of her remarks had been edited to negatively portray Sherrod, making it seem as if she was confessing to using her position at the USDA to discriminate against White farmers, when in actuality, she was talking about the importance of overcoming prejudice.
â€œSherrod lost her job over this misrepresentation, which Fox News enthusiastically repeated without seeking the facts,â€ Rucker said. â€œThe network has since tried to pretend it had nothing to do with this smear, but itâ€™s the number one reason these kinds of distortions have any part in our national dialogue.â€
The campaign also seeks to highlight the ways in which Fox Newsâ€™ rhetoric is not only divisive, but dangerous.
ColorOfChange.org points to a recent incident in which a man armed with a rifle, a shotgun and a handgun opened fire on California Highway Patrol officers on an Oakland freeway. Police later determined that the shooter was on his way to the American Civil Liberties Union and Tides Foundation offices in San Francisco to kill people.
â€œNo one had ever heard of the Tides Foundation until Fox News' Glenn Beck started demonizing and spreading false information about the organization,â€ Rucker said. â€œBeck consistently pushes conspiracy theories involving Tides and other groups â€“ a move that is irresponsible and has the potential to lead to violence. But as weâ€™ve seen, Fox News does nothing to rein in Beck or its other hosts. Itâ€™s time we assert our desire to live in a Fox-free nation.â€
ColorOfChange.org successfully executed a similar campaign last year, using pressure from their members to urge major corporations to pull their advertisements from airing during Glenn Beckâ€™s eponymous show on Fox News Channel. This came after Beck made comments regarding President Obama, labeling him a â€œracistâ€ who â€œhas a deep-seated hatred for white peopleâ€.
As a result, more than 100 FNC advertisers distanced themselves from Beck, refusing to air their advertisements during his show. A similar campaign was launched in the UK soon after, targeting international companies who advertised on his program overseas. His show continues to air without advertisements in the UK to date.
With more than 600,000 members, ColorOfChange.org is the largestÂ African-American online political organization in the country.
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