With an intense media focus on the Boston Marathon bombing and the plant explosion in Texas this week, it might be possible to excuse Fox News for failing to cover the Senate debate over gun control and the failure of that august body to take any effective action.
It might be. On closer look, however, it’s not.
Not only did Fox News ignore the debate and the vote generally, the network also chose not to air President Obama’s heartfelt response to the Senate’s failure.
All they could muster up the courage to offer was this snippet of the President’s remarks on their Facebook feed. Naturally, they picked the one section that could scare the poor souls who tune-in regularly:
“All in all, this was a pretty shameful day for Washington. But this effort is not over. I want to make it clear to the American people: We can still bring about meaningful changes that reduce gun violence so long as the American people don’t give up on them.” -President Obama speaks about the background check plan defeated in the Senate
Even this brief quotation seemed to rile and confuse most of their loyal viewers. Typical responses included:
Rob Stratton You dum fuk.. this is our country and you will not take it! Go conquer Kenya jackoff!
Annabelle Behr How many more freedoms can you take away from us, Mr. President. Next will be freedom of speech.
Caroline McElwee Morris Go to hell…. my constitutional right will never be taken away… you don’t like this country enough… get out!!!!!
Neither Behr nor Morris seemed to notice that thousands of people were still commenting on the feed and doing so freely.
Others echoed Senator Rand Paul, who said that he thought Obama was using Newtown parents as “props” during his speeches:
Debbie Bates He needs to quit using all these props to make people feel sorry for him and his stupid bills. The American people arr smarter than that!!!!!
(Not so smart, Debbie, not to realize that the bill was put forward by two senators, Joe Manchin, a West Virginia Democrat, and Pat Toomey a Pennsylvania Republican.)
No one seemed to stop and think that anguished parents might be standing beside the President simply because their children were slaughtered by a young man with a semi-automatic assault rifle and large-capacity ammunition clips. And Fox wasn’t going to mention the fact that every child in the room was hit by at least three bullets or note that some were hit up to eleven times. After all, if you paused to think about that you’d know exactly why those parents were attending the news conference.
Fox couldn’t quote Mr. Obama when he said this—because some of viewers might have nodded in agreement:
“The fact is most of these senators could not offer any good reason why we wouldn’t want to make it harder for criminals and those with severe mental illness to buy a gun. There were no coherent arguments as to why we wouldn’t do this.”
They didn’t dare mention this:
“Mark Barden, who lost his 7-year-old son, Daniel, introduced the president and said the families would return home ‘disappointed but not defeated,’ with determination that change will come.”
“‘Our hearts are broken. Our spirit is not,’ Barden said, as Obama put his hand on his shoulder. Throughout the appearance, some of the parents cried and were embraced by Biden, Obama’s point man on the issue.”
As for Senator Paul’s comment that people like Mr. Barden were nothing more than “props,” Obama responded:
“Do we really think thousands of families whose lives have been shattered by gun violence don’t have a right to weigh in on this issue? Do we think their emotions, their loss is not relevant to this debate? So all in all this was a pretty shameful day for Washington.”
By now it probably doesn’t matter. Fox News has convinced viewers that all scientists are liars (global warming, evolution). That all liberals are communists—or socialists—or lepidopterists. That Obama is a Muslim (even when Fox spent the 2008 election cycle blasting Mr. Obama for attending the Christian church of Jeremiah Wright). That even polling organizations are fudging numbers to help liberals.
(Remember Fox News predicting that Mitt Romney was sure to win?)
In the end, the comments on the feed could only evoke a feeling of sadness. Eileen Krause, for one, seemed to believe that marriage equality was more dangerous than gunfire:
Eileen Krause …THE reason OBAMA got. 2 terms is because all the people getting the handouts did not want it to end. Then he goes along with Gay marriage at The last minute and got all their votes. It’s us hardworking people that wont get crap if we lose our jobs.
Another commenter seemed confused. He called for immediate action to stop the President, even though Obama had done nothing more than support a bi-partisan bill put forward by two duly-elected members of the Senate:
Daniel Guyewski I am calling upon the congress to begin immediate impeachment proceedings against Barak Obama for his criminal actions against the second amendment.
Another one of the faithful was relieved that the dictator had been stopped, even if dictators, by very definition, are never hampered by legislative measures:
Kathy Bremmer I thought it was a GREAT day in Washington. Patriots 1… Dictator…zip.
At other times the thread was a parade of right-wing racist or paranoid thought:
Coleman Lacy Nothing will get done with in office, you freaking commie.
Rick Dalberg What is shameful is this Socialist’s arrogance.
Randy Ferris Why don’t he and his bodyguards walk into the ghetto and tell the gangsta s that they have to hand over the guns.
Cary Henderson Obamaspeak translation:
“We b p1ssed.
We gon haunt U.
I’m gon get up n yo face.”
Another viewer weighed in, a fellow who had no idea North Korea developed nuclear weapons during the last administration. (We can probably give him a pass on the “Oran.” It’s likely a typo, since even fans of Fox News probably don’t think the city of Oran in Algeria has nuclear weapons):
Connor Raimondi His 2nd term has only begun and we r already being bombed! Korea has Nukes and Oran is getting them- I mean really? Lets cut our defense some more!
And to be fair, sometimes the craziness came from the left:
Mike McHugh Good for You Mr President and SHame on The Senate Maybe the next looney Gunman should do it in the Halls of the Senate.
When other liberals posted that this bill was not an attack on freedom—and noted that in several polls 90% of Americans favored universal background checks for gun buyers—they were labeled communists or “sheeple.”
Chuck Smith Update … After some research it turns out to be a Poll from Quinnipiac University Polling Institute that came up with the 90%, it has 2 Directors, One used to work for the NY Times and the other worked for CBS … lmao, enough said!
Jeannine Neuschwander Well people quit quoting those polls?? The results show a 90% approval for background checks, which we already have, and the people asked were under 1000. Anyone who took statistics knows that is not a good sampling and the question was not asking if they support BO’s agenda. Educate yourself before you start spreading your “facts.”
I’m rather fond of facts. So I did some quick checking. The questions vary slightly but the polls are in agreement. A Washington Post/ABC poll taken a few days ago showed that 86% of Americans favored near-universal background checks. CNN/Opinion Research Corp. had it at 83% vs. 17% opposed. Respondents in that poll even favored background checks for individuals wanting to buy ammunition—a dubious proposition (55% for; 45% against). Quinnipiac asked: “Do you support or oppose requiring background checks for all gun buyers?” The results: 91% yes; 8% no. Finally, a CBS poll put the question to the public: 90% said yes; 8% said no.
In the end, however, logic and concern for the children of Newtown and their families were lost in the story. And to be blunt, sometimes it was hard to understand what these people were saying. For example:
Louise Todd as the good samaritan said ‘cross over the road, the launderama is down the road, round the corner and along a bit’. it makes sense, doesn’t it..if you don’t read the Bible..Obamas birth certificate was compared to the dead sea scrolls and that was before he was even alive…
That’s how it goes at Fox News. It’s perfectly predictable at this point. So, here’s what Fox News will be saying in days ahead and what Fox News won’t mention. They will stress the fact that the terrorists in Boston are Muslims. They won’t mention that millions of other Americans are Muslims but not terrorists.
Fox News won’t mention that all the police and all the firemen killed in Massachusetts and Texas were union members. On Fox News all union members are thugs and union workers care only for fat paychecks.
Fox News won’t note that more people actually died in the Texas explosion than at the hands of the terrorists in Boston. They won’t note that poor safety controls contributed to the disaster. They won’t tell viewers that government regulations are often critically importance—if we don’t want fertilizer plants exploding in our backyards any more than we want terrorists killing our families while we’re watch marathons. On Fox News you will never hear anyone say that some business people are scumbags and readily cut corners on workplace safety or that one job of unions is to fight for worker safety.
Finally, Fox won’t mention that members of Congress from Texas who voted against federal aid for victims of Hurricane Sandy are now calling for and by any liberal calculus certainly should receive disaster relief for the town of West, Texas.
In the meantime, all good Americans grieve with all the families affected in Connecticut, Massachusetts and Texas.
You can see these wonderful statements from the Fox News audience for yourself here: