still of Ingraham; graphic of DEI; chyron: The real danger of DEI

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Fox News' crusade against DEI ignores Fox Corp.'s corporate diversity programs

Following its similar obsession with fearmongering about critical race theory, Fox News’ latest crusade is to attack policy initiatives promoting diversity, equity, and inclusion, or DEI. The conservative cable network has lobbed countless attacks against DEI, claiming that it is racist; that DEI leads to unqualified “equity hires” in positions of power, with deadly results; and that DEI is taking over our institutions and poisoning society.

Fox has also criticized universities and other institutions that implement DEI practices, especially corporations. Unfortunately for Fox News, its parent company Fox Corp. is one of those very corporations that champions DEI initiatives, including creating an “inclusion index” that tracks corporate culture and a program to address the systemic gap that Black employees face in mentorship opportunities.

Here are some examples of Fox News’ hypocrisy on display as it attacks DEI:

  • Fox News and its parent corporation openly celebrate their commitment to diversity and inclusion

    • Fox Corp. has repeatedly expressed a commitment to diversity and inclusion. In 2023, the company stated:

      We are committed to diversity from the very top of the Company. Our Board of Directors requires that minority and female candidates are presented for consideration with each Director vacancy. We believe that the more voices in the room and the more diverse the experiences of our colleagues, the better FOX’s internal culture and external programming are. Our diversity enables us to be more reflective of the audiences we reach and enhances our ability to create news, sports and entertainment programming that serves all viewers across the country. [, accessed 2/5/24; Fox 2023 Notice of Annual Meeting of Stockholders, accessed 2/5/24]

    • Fox News has even implemented initiatives to foster this commitment to diversity, such as creating an “inclusion index” to determine whether “corporate culture is moving in the right direction.” [Fox News Workplace Professionalism and Inclusion Council, December 2022]

    • The 2022 report from Fox’s Workplace Professionalism and Inclusion Council included a section addressing the gap in mentorship opportunities for Black employees. The report noted the value of mentors in advancing middle level employees to executive level, and also that, “unfortunately, due to the absence of shared social networks, only 5% of high-achieving Black talent across corporate America win sponsorship.” In short, “high-potential employees” were being passed over for mentorship due to lack of opportunities, rather than lack of talent or skill. In 2021, the WPIC launched the High-Octane Mentoring program “to remedy this problem.” The report touted, “Eight (three Black, four Asian, one Hispanic) out of sixteen mentees were diverse.” [Fox News Workplace Professionalism and Inclusion Council, December 2022]

    • Fox Corp. also highlighted being recognized by DiversityComm as a Top LGBTQ+ Friendly Company for 2023 and being named to the Disability Equality Index’s “Best Places to Work for Disability Inclusion” list that same year, “continuing year-over-year recognition as a top scoring employer.” [Fox 2023 Notice of Annual Meeting of Stockholders, accessed 2/5/24]

    • Fox Corp. has even incorporated a DEI framework into its “approach to talent recruitment, development and retention.” The company also claims to encourage diversity by providing opportunities targeted for underrepresented groups, including partnering with the Emma Bowen Foundation, the T. Howard Foundation, and the National Association of Broadcasters’ Emerson Coleman Fellowship to foster promising talent. [Fox 2023 Notice of Annual Meeting of Stockholders, accessed 2/5/24]

  • Fox News’ crusade against DEI

  • Fox News claims DEI is racism

    • Fox Business’ Dagen McDowell blamed antisemitism on “the spiderlike cancer that is diversity, equity, inclusion that relegates Jewish people, Asian people, and white people into the oppressor category because they are not on the pyramid of adversity,” leading these groups to be “discriminated against and silenced and sidelined in the name of propping up other people.” [Fox News, Outnumbered, 1/3/24]

    • McDowell: “These offices of diversity, equity, and inclusion — I'm going to call it ‘destroy, eradicate, or inculcate,’ because that's what it is.” McDowell continued, “They’re at every university. They’re in every major corporation. And they are racist in the name of anti-racism.” She added: “We saw that this hate cult bred antisemitism and Jew hatred. … All of these offices should be destroyed.” [Fox News, Outnumbered, 1/12/24]

    • Fox host Laura Ingraham declared that “instituting DEI policies that discriminate against non-minorities, that is systemically racist.” Ingraham went on to predict that “the backlash is building against the hyper-politicization of business and it's not going to end well for these corporate titans who thought that their trans flag pins and net zero pledges was going to save them.” Ingraham then advised the business community to end the “foolish alliance with the hard left” and “start trying to appeal more to just regular people, regular Americans,” by allying with Donald Trump and other “populist conservative leaders.” [Fox News, The Ingraham Angle, 1/18/24]

    • Fox News host Jesse Watters: “We’re learning that the diversity, equity, and inclusion agenda is just a Trojan horse to hire more libs. It has nothing to do with diversity at all. They’re just using diversity as cover to discriminate against straight white males, so they can pack institutions with wild-eyed DEI radicals who HR and everybody else isn't allowed to challenge.” [Fox News, Jesse Watters Primetime, 1/2/24]

    • After an extended rant against former Harvard President Claudine Gay, American Majority founder and frequent Fox News guest Ned Ryun said, “DEI is racism and, quite frankly, is antisemitic, because any time you view the world through the race of lens, by its very definition, you are a racist.” Fox host Pete Hegseth agreed: “An antiracist gets to be racist, because they’re racist against the right person.” [Fox News, The Ingraham Angle, 1/3/24]

    • Fox News host Jeanine Pirro: “DEI is just a rebranded version of hating white people, hating people who are part of this country.” [Fox News, The Five, 1/12/24]

    • On The Ingraham Angle, anti-civil rights activist and frequent Fox News guest Chris Rufo declared that “Harvard needs to abolish its DEI programs. It needs to put a permanent end to its racist admissions system.” In the same segment, frequent guest Victor Davis Hanson claimed DEI led to “racist segregated graduations, racist segregated safe space, racist segregated dorms.” [Fox News, The Ingraham Angle, 1/2/24]

  • Fox News claims DEI leads to unqualified people in power, even fearmongering that “equity hires” could be deadly

    • Jesse Watters: “Making diversity the top factor without regard for merit, just so you can hire a radical liberal, is a con job that just keeps blowing up in our faces.” Attacking Supreme Court Justice Ketanji Brown Jackson and Vice President Kamala Harris, Watters added, “Biden's Supreme Court nominee couldn't say what a woman is. His vice president can't even say anything coherent.” [Fox News, Jesse Watters Primetime, 1/3/24]

    • Fox host Greg Gutfeld attacked Disney after it announced that a woman would be directing the next Star Wars movie. Gutfeld said: “It’s some false virtue signaling that only large corporations can get away with, right? Large corporations can easily shoulder this destructive behavior and they parade it around like a virtue. Meanwhile, those policies would destroy smaller companies if they were to try that folly. That’s why you only see big companies do this when they’re losing money. And it’s a scam, right? It’s basically a logrolling grift.” [Fox News, The Five, 1/4/24]

    • Watters said DEI “has always been about a race hustle” and “a Trojan horse for these people and Al Sharpton.” In response to a clip of Sharpton defending DEI, Watters said, “It has always been about a race hustle. It’s always been about patronage for Sharpton and his crew. How many people can they get into these companies, perhaps without the proper qualifications, and then what kind of influence can they generate within these companies, and what kind of profit can they share with the crew from inside the companies? That’s what it’s always been about. It’s a Trojan horse for these people and Al Sharpton.” [Fox News, The Five, 1/4/24]

    • Frequent Fox guest and OutKick founder Clay Travis called DEI “a flawed idea,” saying, “It shouldn't matter what their race or their gender is. It should be about their talents. The meritocracy should win.” He continued, “Oftentimes, as you see with Claudine Gay, what you get is not the most qualified person for the job. You get the person that they want to look like they should have the job – which is also, by the way, how Kamala Harris ended up getting the vice presidential role for Joe Biden. It wasn't about her own talents, it was about, I think, her race and gender.” Fox anchor Martha MacCallum added that by narrowing his choice for vice president to only women, Biden was “cutting out half the population.” [Fox News, The Story with Martha MacCallum, 1/5/24]

    • Gutfeld compared DEI to “witch trials, except they replaced drowning with racial justice,” and said, “You can die by DEI either way.” [Fox News, The Five, 1/12/24]

    • Laura Ingraham said that “in some settings when DEI comes first and merit second, this may mean needless American deaths and a lot of them,” connecting Boeing’s corporate diversity policies to recent safety problems with the company’s planes. [Fox News, The Ingraham Angle, 1/12/24]

    • Discussing Boeing’s recent safety record, Fox host Brian Kilmeade asked, “And the question is, is this about DEI? Are you not hiring the best people? Are you hiring the most diverse people?” Kilmeade continued that the Biden administration “went over the top with diversity,” then steered the conversation back to Boeing, asking: “Is that causing quality problems here?” [Fox News, Fox & Friends, 1/25/24]

    • Responding to a recent accident on a Boeing aircraft and a TikTok video made by Alaska Airlines to celebrate LGBTQ Pride month, Fox News contributor Charlie Hurt said, “I've always thought DEI was bad, but I have never been on an Alaska flight. This is probably too far. It's proof DEI kills. It’s ridiculous. But this is what happens when you take ridiculous ideas and ridiculous people and you put them in charge of serious things.” [Fox News, One Nation with Brian Kilmeade, 1/13/24]

    • Fox News contributor Tyrus blamed “equity hires” for a fatal accidental shooting on a movie set. [Fox News, The Five, 1/19/24]

    • Gutfeld: “DEI is the most anti-individualist endeavor ever, for it assumes that there's no diversity among individual talents, which is why they hamper excellence by promoting mediocrity.” [Fox News, Gutfeld!, 1/19/24]

    • Watters attacked Kamala Harris as a “DEI vice president.” [Fox News, Jesse Watters Primetime, 1/24/24]

    • Tyrus blamed his poor flight experience on “equity hires in management.” [Fox News, Gutfeld!, 1/24/24]

    • Telling Fox viewers to “understand who’s working for the federal government,” Tyrus mockingly suggested that it would be “equity hires” going to the border to cut razor wire. [Fox News, Gutfeld!, 1/25/24]

    • Fox contributor Lisa Boothe: “If you wanted to make the case against diversity, equity, and inclusion, you just point to this White House, right? Every single person, from Kamala to the Cabinet secretaries to Karine Jean-Pierre as press secretary were all chosen as box-selecting exercises as opposed to on a merit base, and the results speak for themselves as you look around and everything is falling apart.” [Fox News, Outnumbered, 1/26/24]

  • Fox News claims DEI is taking over our institutions, poisoning society, and fueling a race war

    • On The Story with Martha MacCallum, Rubin Report host and frequent Fox News guest Dave Rubin claimed Harvard and other schools had “allowed DEI to enter and put everybody in this insane matrix of oppression where, again, Jews and white people are sort of at the top of it and Black and brown students are at the bottom, thus they are the oppressed and can say anything that they want about the perceived oppressors." [Fox News, The Story with Martha MacCallum, 1/2/24]

    • Over a chyron claiming, “Colleges have abandoned excellence for DEI,” Laura Ingraham advised schools to get rid of DEI initiatives, declaring, “Lose the woke and go for broke on merit, on excellence, and objective talent. … You'll be ending the tyrannical grip of the racial spoils system that's poisoned so much of American society.” [Fox News, The Ingraham Angle, 1/2/24]

    • Fox News contributor Ben Domenech said the “DEI agenda … sets people at odds with each other over racial grievance” and was founded in “a lie about the way that America was founded, a lie about the way that we view each other, and a lie that frankly leads to all of this continued and fomented animosity — something that the left uses to push its own agenda.” [Fox News, The Faulkner Focus, 1/3/24]

    • On America Reports, Rubin complained that DEI “has been institutionalized, not only at our places of higher education like Harvard, but it’s been institutionalized in so many of our giant corporations.” Rubin warned, “Until we get back to that meritocracy, that way of looking at the world, then every institution that we have will collapse.” [Fox News, America Reports, 1/5/24]

    • Rubin said DEI is the reason Harvard and other “elite universities” are “terminally infected” with antisemitism. Rubin continued, “It's also that your departments — your political science departments, your sociology departments, your psychology departments, I suspect even the math, the STEM departments have been infected with this stuff.” [Fox News, America Reports, 1/24/24]