Yesterday I wrote a story about how Elisabeth Hasselbeck from Fox News wrote a tweet that managed to find the six degrees of separation between the NFL scandals and Benghazi. As you know, there’s nothing Fox won’t try to link to Benghazi. I’m pretty sure that they could find a way to tie in a weekend weather forecast or a cute kitten video to the events on the night of September 12th, 2012. Anyhow, moving on.
After the story was shared on my Facebook page, on my friend’s page Politically Preposterous, as well as a few others, there was one common theme to the majority of the comments. Other than being outraged that someone at Fox would actually have the nerve to connect Benghazi to a domestic violence issue (I know, big shocker), many people commented about how “dumb” or “stupid” Elisabeth Hasselbeck is.
While I do not care for Elisabeth Hasselbeck, or anything else that comes out of Fox News and much of conservative media, I found the comments a little disturbing. Here’s a few examples, the ones with objectionable words were left out:
“And that my friends is why Faux News hires ditzes. Because they actually believe the crap they spew.”
“She is as dumb as a bag of rocks…and Fox news voted the worst news cast of all the channels and banned in Canada!”
“She gives dumb blondes a bad name.”
“I don’t know whos dumber, her or her viewers.”
“Is there nothing she can’t manage to make herself look stupid covering?”
“What kind of extra activities and with who is this douchebag doing to keep her job, she’s an idiot.”
“im so glad most americans are’nt as stupid as they portray on foxnoise, im surprised she has the brain cells needed to sustain autonomic breathing.” (Yeah, my head hurt reading that.)
First of all, Fox News is not banned in Canada, but I hear this myth repeated over and over again by many people on the left. Fox News is allowed in Canada and Snopes has debunked that story. If y’all could stop perpetuating that myth, I’d greatly appreciate it.
What concerns me, aside from some of the borderline sexist comments (or transphobic whenever the subject of Ann Coulter comes up), is that too many liberals or progressives keep calling conservatives dumb or stupid. It is true that there are a lot of uninformed or just plain ignorant folks that watch Fox News. It is also true that there are many idiots who vote Republican. However, writing Elisabeth Hasselbeck and others over at Fox off as stupid, dumb or idiotic is stupid, dumb and idiotic for us to do.
Why? Because the people on Fox News aren’t dumb. From Rupert Murdoch on down, they’re actually quite smart. You don’t stay at number one for cable news year after year by being stupid. Even the smartest people believe in and do stupid things. It’s easy to say that Elisabeth Hasselbeck is a dumb blonde, but she has a Fine Arts degree from Boston College and makes a million dollars a year working at Fox.
Bill O’Reilly, Sean Hannity and all the rest of them, including Sarah Palin, aren’t stupid either. It takes a certain degree of skill to know your audience and to keep giving them what they want to hear year after year. Prince Alwaleed Bin Talal, a Saudi multibillionaire who is the second largest investor in Fox News, also isn’t stupid. It takes a certain degree of skill and business smarts to become a billionaire and Murdoch, Alwaleed Bin Talal and others are all pretty bright people.
Even a lot of folks who watch Fox News aren’t dumb, nor are the politicians that count on their votes. Let’s face it, if Republicans are so stupid, how is it that they have control of the House of Representatives, the majority of state governors, and state legislatures? So let’s stop with calling all Republicans dumb, because all that does is cause us to underestimate and write off our political opponents, especially in a critical election year.
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