We wrote last week about how CNN’s Carol Costello did an incredible job shutting down the spokesman for an officially-designated hate group who was on her show to talk about why the group, the American Family Association, thinks a high school day devoted to anti-bullying is actually a secret plan to recruit kids into homosexuality.
The AFA representative, known for his hateful commentary, was telling Costello that the Southern Poverty Law Center, a renowned civil rights organization, was really a “hate group” because it had called out AFA for its own hateful language. Costello then read Fischer his own quote claiming that Hitler’s top lieutenants were all gay, because Hitler knew he needed someone extra savage to kill all the Jews, so he chose gays. (This is long-standing blood lie of the far right.)
“Hitler recruited around him homosexuals to make up his Stormtroopers, they were his enforcers, they were his thugs. And Hitler discovered that he could not get straight soldiers to be savage and brutal and vicious enough to carry out his orders, but that homosexual solders basically had no limits and the savagery and brutality they were willing to inflict on whomever Hitler sent them after. So he surrounded himself, virtually all of the Stormtroopers, the Brownshirts, were male homosexuals.”
As if the premise of the conversation weren’t bad enough, the AFA representative, known for his offensive commentary, started lecturing Costello about all the health risks he claimed, falsely, were associated with being gay. At that point, Costello had heard enough, and shut down the interview.
CNN’s COSTELLO: I would think most historians would take issue with that. But what I’m saying to you is that, by many people’s standards, would be hate speech.
AFA’s FISCHER: Well, but the reality is, it’s the Southern Poverty Law Center. They’re out to destroy the AFA and the FRC (Family Research Council), that makes them the bullying group, that makes them the hate group. They’re the ones that want to silence any view that would criticize the normalization of homosexual behavior. And we know from the CDC, and from the FDA, not part of the vast rightwing conspiracy…
FISCHER: …that homosexual behavior has the same health risks…
FISCHER: …associated with it…
COSTELLO: That, that’s just not true. I’m gonna end this interview now, sir, I’m sorry, because that’s just not true. Mr. Fischer, um, thanks for sharing your views. I guess.
You can watch Costello in action here.
Well, as you can imagine, the AFA, as it often does, threw a hissy fit. And again, Costello was having none of it. IN today’s broadcast, Costello plays the AFA’s hissy fit, then responds:
AFA’s BRYAN FISCHER: Homosexual behavior, it is immoral, it is unnatural, and it is unhealthy. That is a simple, straight-forward statement of fact. But for the gay Gestapo, they’re gonna call that an insult…. Now, Carol Costello, she showed you what this looks like. I mean Carol Costello, when I was on with her on CNN, she showed you what the gay Gestapo looks like in action, cuz she cut my water off just as soon as I started to talk about the health risks of homosexual behavior.
CNN’S CAROL COSTELLO: Well, Mr. Fischer, if that’s the definition of the “gay Gestapo,” then I am a proud, card-carrying member.
This was not unlike NBC’s Chris Matthews recently standing up to the race-baiting coming out of the Romney campaign via Reince Priebus, the head of the Republican National Committee. Or when CNN’s Soledad O’Brien recently stood up to Romney surrogate John Sununu and called him out on his lies.
Republicans think truth has a liberal bias, so they lie routinely as a matter of strategy. And they think that the media will be willing cohorts in that lie, out of some twisted sense of fairness. And as Candy Crowley showed Mitt Romney in the last debate, and Carol Costello showed the representative of the AFA, you are permitted to lie on national television if you want to, but don’t expect the media to aid and abet the lie.
Part of being an objective journalists is honoring the truth.
In case you missed it, here’s the part of the last debate when President Obama destroyed Mitt Romney for claiming that the President hid the truth of the Libya attack for political purposes, and then Candy Crowley corrected Romney’s lie.