It got downright nasty at an annual AFTRA meeting in Chicago Monday night, reports Phil Rosenthal of the Chicago Tribune, as WMAQ lead anchor Warner Saunders assailed former Sun-Times TV critic Robert Feder for perceived bias.
Saunders said Feder diminished “the accomplishments of black talent while placing the spotlight on our deficiencies.” Noting it was Black History Month, the Channel 5 anchor said inviting Feder was “like choosing David Duke to serve as mohel at a circumcision.”
Duke was, of course, head of the Ku Klux Klan.
Saunders claims Feder, who left the Sun-Times with a buyout in October, treated minority anchors like Lester Holt and Diann Burns unfairly. (Saunders is set to retire in the spring.)
WMAQ is owned by NBC.
“I simply wanted to confront him, face to face,” Saunders said. “I just spoke my truth in front of a person who I felt has been unfair to me and to black journalists in this city. … Very few people who are not in our skin can understand this.”
“What I was writing about in each case had nothing to do with the individual’s race.”