Today on NBC's The Chris Matthews Show, The Washington Post's Nia-Malika Henderson shed some light on Fox News' role in trumpeting racially charged rhetoric that aims to otherize President Obama.
If past is prologue, Henderson is right to voice concern that Fox News might “hint” at this type of language: Fox News already has a long history of race-baiting attacks on Obama.
Just last year, Fox News host Eric Bolling came under widespread criticism after he said Obama was hosting “hoodlum[s]” in “the hizzouse” referring to the White House hosting Ali Bongo, the Gabonese president, and American hip-hop artist and actor, Common. Bolling also drew heavy criticism after posting to his Twitter account that Obama was “Chuggging 40's” in Ireland “while tornadoes ravage MO.”
Former Fox New host Glenn Beck once infamously called President Obama a “racist” with a “deep-seated hatred for white people.” Beck also suggested that Obama refused to meet with a BP chief because he was a “white CEO.”
Recently, discussing the controversial shooting of Florida teenager Trayvon Martin, Fox News' Dick Morris said Obama “intervened” in the case because he wants to “rekindle the sense of black victimization.”
Henderson's comments, in response to Dan Rather's statement that “race will be a factor in this presidential campaign,” serves as a reminder that Fox News itself could play a role in amplifying the role that race plays in the 2012 campaign.