Hispanic Group Alleges Hate Speech on Cable News
Petition to FCC claims that hate speech is "prevalent" on cable news networks
By John Eggerton -- Broadcasting & Cable, 1/29/2009 6:04:07 PM
In a petition to the FCC this week, the National Hispanic Media Coalition claims that hate speech is "prevalent" on national cable news networks and wants the government to do something about it.
That was one of the assertions made by the group in a formal request that the commission open a notice of inquiry into "the extent, the effect, and possible remedies" to what it said was a pervasive problem, and not just on conservative talk radio.
NHMC, a nonprofit LA based media advocacy group, cited a 2007 Media Matters study that concluded that "the alleged connection between illegal immigration and crime" was discussed on 94 episodes of CNN's Lou Dobbs Tonight, 66 times on Fox's Bill O'Reilly, and 29 times on Glenn Beck's Headline News show.
Lou Dobbs' ongoing criticism of immigration reform and border enforcement, or more specifically the lack of it, has often drawn criticism from immigrants' rights groups.
NHMC defined hate speech as speech whose cumulative effect is to create an atmosphere of hate and prejudice that "legitimizes" violence against its targets.
NHMC was looking for a sympathetic ear from an FCC under Democratic hands, citing candidate Barack Obama's fall 2008 speech to the Congressional Hispanic Caucus about immigrants "counting on us to stop the hateful rhetoric filling the airwaves."
It also sent a copy of the petition to the National Telecommunications & Information Administration, asking it to update its 1993 report to Congress on the role of Telecommunications in Hate Crimes.
The group said it was not asking the FCC to re-impose the fairness doctrine, something some congressional Democrats have suggested they might want to do, but it does want the FCC to collect data, seek public comment, explore what they say is the relationship between hate speech and hate crimes and "explore options" for combating it. An aide to then candidate Barack Obama told B&C at least twice during the campaign that he did not support reintroducing the doctrine.
Saying its critics would raise the "red herring" of the doctrine, NHMC said it "has not...called for any such remedy."
A CNN spokeswoman said the network has no comment at this time. Fox News had not commented at press time.
Acting FCC Chairman Michael Copps was not commenting on the petition, either, but he did indicate that he stood by comments he made to B&C back in 2007 about regulating hate speech, a conversation prompted by Don Imus' comments about the Rutgers women's basketball team.
"There are roles here for all of us. Parents are the first line of defense when it comes to indecency, violence or the hate speech you are talking about," he said at the time.
"Industry is the second line of defense to provide the tools and controls, but those haven't worked so well. So they need to provide also some sense of practical self-discipline as they did with the old voluntary codes of broadcaster conduct. It wasn't necessarily a golden age, but it was a practical attempt to practice some self-discipline," he said.
"And there is a role for Congress and the courts if they don't like what Congress does. We have a system of checks and balances, but, for checks and balances to work, everybody has to be participating. It doesn't do for the industry to say this is all for parents or for someone in government to say this is all for the FCC or all for Congress to do. We all have to step up to the plate on this with some common sense."
"As an academic I taught the beauties of the First Amendment for many years, so nobody is looking to supplant or run roughshod over it. But we have a pressing national problem that I think lots of people are determined to get a resolution of."
What is more hateful than an "immigrant" claiming to be here because he/she loves America, then proceed to violate our laws and standards? What is more hateful than accusing "rule of law" Americans of xenophobia, when 15% of US residents are foreign-born? What is more hateful than Hispanics claiming that our pre-1965 country-quota system was discriminatory because if favored Europeans, then ignore the current system which is DE FACTO DISCRIMINATION in immigration because it favors Mexicans? Such hypocrisy, why? Because the Hispanic-American (dual loyalty?) politicians apparently cannot get elected without a major influx of more Latinos.... obviously trying to change the nature of this nation to be more like "back home"...
Marshall Dillon - 2/7/2009 9:43:54 AM EST
The true haters are La Raza, (the race) MeCHa, Lulac and other sundry "Reconquista" advocate groups. Make no mistake - they HATE us!!! The allegation of hate by hispanic groups is a common militant tactic used to silence opposition.
You see in their culture hate and racism is a GOOD thing. They are not like us, they do not cry when the gringo's rights are trampled. (can you say affirmative action?) They are turd-worlders who will hate us no matter how much we give them. The more we give the more they will despise us.
Steve Barrett - 2/3/2009 6:30:37 AM EST
More hate speech from the National Hispanic Media Coalition. They hate the United States. They hate our laws. They hate our customs. They hate our rights. They hate our Constitution. They hate our free speech.
Larry Doyle - 2/1/2009 4:50:35 PM EST
This issue is never discussed on the major news networks because they don't deem an invasion of our country newsworthy. And the 3 cable shows referenced in this article are the only ones willing to even mention this issue. I guess the truth hurts, so of course they want the matter covered up and not discussed. Because if American citizens actually find out how bad it is, they just might rise up and demand something be done about it.
Bobbie McLaughlin - 1/30/2009 5:37:13 AM EST
And here we go again, These Hispanic and pro immigrant groups, seems they never heard before about "Freedom of speech" and they are trying to muzzle the people that expose some inconvenient truths about illegal immigrants. True , they are not all criminals, but there are a good number of them, for starters the Hispanic gangs.Add to that DUI , add to that child rapists, drug smugglers, identity theft
and on and on....
Terry Lassiter - 1/29/2009 9:07:17 PM EST
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