We’re all used to Fox News giving a platform to some rather bombastic voices. Glenn Beck, Bill O’Reilly, Cal Thomas. The beat goes on, so to speak, with provocative voices that like to get a rise out of their audiences.
But this morning’s Fox & Friends might have taken things to a new low. In a segment talking about teenage pregnancy, the show decided to bring on Bob Enyart as an expert. Enyart is an anti-abortion and anti-gay activist in Colorado and a member of the group Colorado Right to Life. But his past is not only controversial, it’s downright devious.
Check out this track record: (1) In 1999, he beat his stepson so badly with a belt, that police came and arrested him, charging him with a misdemeanor. He served 60 days in jail for the crime. (2) When Dr. George Tiller was murdered walking into a Church, Enyart said Tiller’s death was nothing more than an “occupational hazard,” because Tiller provided abortion services and reproductive health care to women. (3) Enyant used to read the obituaries of people who died from AIDS on television, while playing the song “Another One Bites the Dust,” in the background.
So we’ve got someone who served time in prison for child abuse, who believes that doctors who perform abortions deserve to be murdered, and who sings “Another One Bites the Dust” whenever someone dies from AIDS. Congratulations, Fox News. You’ve managed to sink to an even deeper, more disturbing low.
Send Fox & Friends a message that “experts” like Bob Enyart don’t deserve the national platform that the cable news network provides. Are his views really what the network wants to send?
edia Matters for America notes that Enyart is just another in a lengthy line of controversial guests that Fox News has given air time to. It’s almost as if the network isn’t interested in checking the backgrounds of the people they bring on to pontificate.
In addition to Enyart, Fox & Friends gave Bradlee Dean — the controversial religious rock singer in Minnesota who suggested that it’s moral to kill gays and lesbians, while at the same time headlining events for the likes of Rep. Michele Bachmann and GOP gubernatorial candidate Tom Emmer — the chance to weigh in on the construction of an Islamic Center in the vicinity of Ground Zero. And Fox & Friends also gave air time to former Saturday Night Live cast member Victoria Jackson, who since giving up comedy and a career in the early 1990s, has become a bit of a fringe political activist, arguing that President Obama “bears traits that resemble the anti-Christ.” Sheesh. That makes Sharron Angle look as articulate as Winston Churchill.
Shouldn’t Fox & Friends be doing a better job of screening their guests, in order to avoid giving air time to people with inappropriate, and at times seriously violent, point of views? Yes, everyone has the right to free speech, and nobody is taking that away from Enyart, Dean, Jackson or any other activist. But to give these people soapboxes on a national morning talkshow? Doesn’t that just legitimate their troubling views?
Send Fox & Friends a message that good journalism … heck, mediocre journalism … demands better. There’s a reason news channels don’t bring on the Westboro Baptist Church to talk about the U.S. military, or the Ku Klux Klan to talk about race relations. That’s because these groups, while having the right to believe very hateful things, don’t have the right to be given a megaphone on national television.Demand better of Fox News, and Fox & Friends.