When I read that the Congressional Black Caucus was considering partnering with FoxNews for another presidential debate, I couldn't believe my eyes. It was one thing to do it in 2004. Perhaps the motive was increased recognition of the CBC among a new audience.
Isn't time to question both the CBC and FoxNews' motives here? Let's first look at FoxNews. These are the same people who have at least twice publicly attacked a CBC member, Barack Obama and got pushed back by other media sources. First there was the consistent, disingenuous linking of Sen. Obama's name with Osama, as in Bin Laden. Newscasters and commentators would repeatedly make a pseudo-Freudian slip..."Sen. Osama...pardon me, I meant to say Obama!" The confusion extended even to photos and captions on TV. This continues today, btw, on Fox and other channels. Then there was the fabricated story that Obama had attended a madrassa in as a child living in Indonesia in order to spread the mis-information that he is a Muslim and not Christian. When confronted, FoxNews blamed the Clinton campaign for spreading the story, thus managing to damage two Democratic contenders with a single blow.
This is just par for the course for the regularly racist, rightwing Fox News. Maybe it's news to some, but the whole point of FoxNews is to deliver a conservative slant on the news. FoxNews is owned by Rupert Murdoch, a well-known conservative moneybags man originally from Australia.
Does Murdoch really have black voters' best interests at heart in sponsoring a presidential debate? Or does he want to appear to be modern and open while creating a forum in which his team can control the outcome. What influence does he want to have over the presidential campaign - one in which Republicans are entering even weaker than they did in 2004 if you go by the TechPresident blog mention rankings?
Murdoch is the same guy who publishes the neoconservative Weekly Standard magazine. According to RightWeb, "Conveniently, every Monday one of Vice President Cheney 's aides stops by the office to pick up 30 copies of the magazine..."
Not only does this hand legitimacy to those who fight regularly against the priorities of our communities, it erodes alliances in the progressive movement and even undercuts the existing African-American owned media outlets like TV1.
Cathy Hughes and her investors including Quincy Jones founded TV1 to provide an alternative to the disgusting, unrepresentative BET. How better to show our new power than supporting a black-owned channel that is trying to provide positive programming that is more representative of our culture. Did you know TV1 is going to re-broadcast Roots during Easter week? Why not have the presidential debate on TV1?
Furthermore, Hughes has proved herself as someone who is on our side. A good old progressive organization the National Council of Negro Women honored her in 2006 with their Uncommon Height Award which is named after stalwart civil rights soldier/saint Dr. Dorothy Height.
I hope no one is taking some kind of under the table kickback from FoxNews at the CBC. I really do. I think our CBC brothers and sisters are better than that though. I want to think that the new CBC wants to show America how strong we really are and represent. Let's hope they make a different choice.
Cross-posted at Jack and Jill Politics