Color of Change blasts Stossel's Civil Rights Act comments

The group Color of Change is calling on its supporters to hold John Stossel and Fox News accountable for Stossel's remarks that the Public Accommodation section of the Civil Rights Act should be repealed.

On its website, Color of Change, which aims to “strengthen Black America's political voice,” has posted a petition that calls on News Corp. Chairman Rupert Murdoch to fire Stossel:

Dear Rupert Murdoch,

I am calling on you to fire Fox Business anchor and Fox News contributor John Stossel. His use of your platform to call for the repeal of key parts of the Civil Rights Act are an insult to Black America and to all Americans who understand the history of racism in this country and have fought for racial progress.

Stossel's remarks fit into a troubling pattern of Fox News personalities spreading misinformation about the state of race in America, and the history of racism in this country. And it follows repeated instances of personalities disparaging Black history, leaders and institutions.

In an email to supporters, Color of change states that “recent history has shown that the public accommodations section of the Civil Rights Act is still needed.” The email highlights a 1994 case in which the Denny's restaurant chain paid, as The New York Times reported, “more than $54 million to settle a lawsuit by thousands of black customers who had been refused service or had been forced to wait longer or pay more than white customers.” It also highlights a Justice Department lawsuit filed against the Valley Club of Huntingdon Valley, Pennsylvania, alleging that the club engaged in discrimination on the basis of race or color.

On Fox News, Stossel discussed the 1964 Civil Rights Act and commented that “it's time now to repeal” the Public Accommodation section, “because private businesses ought to get to discriminate. And I won't ever go to a place that's racist and I will tell everybody else not to and I'll speak against them. But it should be their right to be racist.”

Color of Change has had success in its activism aimed at what it says is Fox News' “troubling pattern” of misinformation about race. Last year, the group established a boycott campaign against Glenn Beck in which at least 100 advertisers have reportedly dropped their ads from his Fox News program since he called President Obama a “racist” who has a “deep-seated hatred for white people.”