Fractures in conservative opposition to gay rights and even same-sex marriage have now widened to include the core of the right’s message machine, the Fox News Channel, where a cadre of younger voices have begun to defend same-sex relationships and even advocate openly for same-sex marriage.
The channel’s heterodox posture on gay rights comes despite Fox’s siding comfortably with mainstream Republican positions on other divisive social issues of the day, such as abortion and contraception.
But like the Republican Party, whose leaders have begun to step away from anti-gay positions that are deeply unpopular with younger voters, Fox appears to be feeling pressure both from its younger staff and key audience segments to reflect what polls suggest is a rapidly shifting consensus. And over the past year, Shepard Smith, the host of afternoon news show Studio B, has emerged as a vocal champion of same-sex marriage. After President Obama’s announcement in support of gay marriage, Smith looked into the camera said that the Republican Party was “on the wrong side of history” on the issue.
“In television people are worried about the demo,” said Margaret Hoover, a former Fox News contributor and former Bush administration staffer who left the network last year, referring to television advertisers preoccupation with viewers between 18 and 49. “‘Are you getting the demo?’ And the demo supports gay rights.”
Smith’s May marriage remarks provided a shock both to elements of Fox’s conservative audience and to liberals, whose enmity with Fox has only deepend through the Obama years.
“The president of the United States: now in the 21st century,” Smith said, and asked reporter Ed Henry: “I am curious whether you believe in this time of rising debt and medical issues and all the rest, if Republicans would go out on a limb and try to make this a campaign issue while sitting very firmly without much question on the wrong side of history.”
…Smith hasn’t stopped since then — quipping recently that “Chick-Fil-A Appreciation Day” was “the national day of intolerance.” And he’s been joined by Megyn Kelly, while other voices on the network — John Stossel, Andrew Napolitano — have shied away from conservative dogma on gay marriage."
Maybe now they can also bring news to Fox News.
A Fox pundit, acting like a first grader.
i love how when they can’t use valid points to push back, they revert childish things. when will they say ‘my dad can beat up your dad’?
Fairleigh Dickinson University found last month that “some outlets, especially Fox News, lead people to be even less informed than those who say they don’t watch any news at all.”
“For example, people who watch Fox News, the most popular of the 24-hour cable news networks, are 18-points less likely to know that Egyptians overthrew their government than those who watch no news at all (after controlling for other news sources, partisanship, education and other demographic factors),” they wrote. “Fox News watchers are also 6-points less likely to know that Syrians have not yet overthrown their government than those who watch no news.”
"You’re blowing it with Fox News," Jobs told him over dinner. "The axis today is not liberal and conservative, the axis is constructive-destructive, and you’ve cast your lot with the destructive people. Fox has become an incredibly destructive force in our society. You can be better, and this is going to be your legacy if you’re not careful." Jobs said he thought Murdoch did not really like how far Fox had gone. "Rupert’s a builder, not a tearer-downer," he said. "I’ve had some meetings with James, and I think he agrees with me. I can just tell."
As America’s middle class battles for its survival on the Wisconsin barricades — against various Koch Oil surrogates and the corporate toadies at Fox News — fans of enlightenment, democracy and justice can take comfort from a significant victory north of Wisconsin border. Fox News will not be moving into Canada after all! The reason: Canada regulators announced last week they would reject efforts by Canada’s right wing Prime Minister, Stephen Harper, to repeal a law that forbids lying on broadcast news.
Canada’s Radio Act requires that “a licenser may not broadcast….any false or misleading news.” The provision has kept Fox News and right wing talk radio out of Canada and helped make Canada a model for liberal democracy and freedom. As a result of that law, Canadians enjoy high quality news coverage including the kind of foreign affairs and investigative journalism that flourished in this country before Ronald Reagan abolished the “Fairness Doctrine” in 1987. Political dialogue in Canada is marked by civility, modesty, honesty, collegiality, and idealism that have pretty much disappeared on the U.S. airwaves. When Stephen Harper moved to abolish anti-lying provision of the Radio Act, Canadians rose up to oppose him fearing that their tradition of honest non partisan news would be replaced by the toxic, overtly partisan, biased and dishonest news coverage familiar to American citizens who listen to Fox News and talk radio. Harper’s proposal was timed to facilitate the launch of a new right wing network, “Sun TV News” which Canadians call “Fox News North.”