In the liberal lexicon, “backlash” is a word that only describes conservatives getting what’s coming to them. But as MSNBC reduces its number of shows and time slots for race-obsessed black hosts, this was bound to happen. The hashtag that appeared as the left began to devour itself was #MSNBCSoWhite.
After MSNBC hired leftist, race-fixated hosts, it was only natural that the news station would be trashed as “going white” when the reality of it’s terrible ratings — for shows hosted by academics preaching about how badly America stinks — cost Comcast some serious cash.
They gave the Rev. Al Sharpton a nightly show at 6 p.m. It had absolutely nothing to do with the infamous race-baiter’s skills on television; he has none. It was all about stroking the ego of a leftist black activist. His mangling of the words on the teleprompter was so routine that the word malapropism could be re-categorized as “Sharptonism.” Early in his “career” at MSNBC, he proclaimed “but resist we much — we must — and we will much — about — that — be committed.” That laughable clip was all over conservative talk radio. That was just one of many. When they demoted Sharpton to a show on Sunday morning, he went quietly.
By contrast, professor Melissa Harris-Perry went out in a Black Lives Matter movement bender. When this self-described over-educated scholar felt her four-year-old show was being curtailed for weekend campaign coverage, she sent an outraged email to her co-workers that leaked to The New York Times. “I will not be used as a tool for their purposes,” she wrote. “I am not a token, mammy or little brown bobblehead. I am not owned by (NBC News Chairman Andrew) Lack, (MSNBC President Phil) Griffin or MSNBC. I love our show. I want it back.” She claimed that her audience — which she calls Nerdland — was hurting.
One was almost waiting for Hurricane Katrina analogies: the NBC brass were drowning minorities with their floods of campaign chatter.
Then a longer memo with more Harris-Perry self-pity leaked out. She was outraged at being left out of political coverage. “I have a Ph.D. in political science and have taught American voting and elections at some of the nation’s top universities for nearly two decades, yet I have been deemed less worthy to weigh in than relative novices and certified liars.” She burned every bridge with a rhetorical flamethrower.
ABC’s “The View” interviewed Harris-Perry on March 14, and she again slammed the race card on the table. “The history of mammy is that mammy is the black woman who cares more about the master’s family than about her own. And so, what I’m saying is, I don’t care more about MSNBC’s reputation than I do about the Nerdland family, about the thing that we built, about our viewing audience and about our team.”
What she built, compared to Fox and CNN, would make molehills swell with pride.
She said her show’s end absolutely has racial implications because her show’s guest list was so diverse. “Taking this show off the air, even if you put me, individually, back on as a host meant that the folks who sat at our table, whether they were transgender women of color, whether they were Latino Republicans, they just weren’t going to be there anymore because we were the folks who put them on air each and every week.”
The ratings problems at MSNBC would be helped by curtailing the radical leftists. But the brass must know that conservatives and independents still won’t trust a network of Obama-tinglers and Hillary Clinton-boosters, from Rachel Maddow to Chris Matthews to Andrea Mitchell. They may have avoided an Al-Jazeera dive, but the leaning forward mess continues.
L. Brent Bozell III is the president of the Media Research Center. Tim Graham is director of media analysis at the Media Research Center and executive editor of the blog NewsBusters.org. To find out more about Brent Bozell III and Tim Graham, and read features by other Creators Syndicate writers and cartoonists, visit the Creators Syndicate Web page at www.creators.com.
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