The events in Ferguson have angered countless Americans, and no one is more angry than Fox News. But not so fast. Fox isn't angry because the shooting reflects a prevalent racial divide in America — quite the opposite. Fox News is accusing other media of sparking a national uproar by reporting Ferguson as a racial issue. Before you start cursing Bill O'Reilly, watch Jon Stewart school Fox News on Ferguson and simply say, "What he said."
On Tuesday night's episode of The Daily Show, Stewart showed clips of Fox News anchors and pundits griping about the way Ferguson has been portrayed and discussed by the press. The segment begins with Bill O'Reilly declaring he's angry — surprise, surprise! — but, instead of being angry at the actual events that have unfolded in Ferguson, the O'Reilly Factor host is targeting his fury at the media for, basically, reporting the facts.
Other Fox News hosts to feel Stewart's passionate — and accurate — wrath include Hannity host Sean Hannity, who goes through painful lengths to explain what he does when he gets pulled over by the police, as if trying to set some kind of example for all those young people who must've done it wrong. And, again, insisting that race has nothing to do with Ferguson.
One pundit even throws out the rather incredible statement: "You know who talks about race? Racists!" But that's hardly the only harebrained statement from the Fox News camp. It clearly didn't prove too challenging for Stewart to eviscerate Fox News' asinine stance on Ferguson.
Bill O'Reilly Is Furious
"Of course you are!" Stewart shouts in mock solidarity. "An unarmed black teenager gunned down in the street by police under suspicious circumstances — who wouldn't cut their vacation short to register their fury?"
But then the rest of clip reveals what O'Reilly is actually furious about: "I'm furious about how the shooting death of 18-year-old Michael Brown is being reported and how various people are reacting to it."
"Yes!" Stewart shouts, but with apparent confusion on his face. "That is the outrage." He then continues completely sarcastically, "The shooting of Michael Brown, and any lack of transparency from the police department responsible for said incident is outrageous ... in how it has been reported."
Fox News Anchors Are Crying Bias
"This mantra of the unarmed black teenager shot by a white cop," political commentator Linda Chavez tells Fox News' Steve Doocy, "That description in and of itself actually colors the way in which we look at this story."
Stewart: "Yes! Describing the actual facts of the case [pauses to think] really does color the way we look at it. White cop shoots unarmed black teen does sound terrible. Whereas, say, hero cop kills alien hunting humans for sport would put a completely different spin on things."
Why Is Ferguson Getting All the Attention?
Fox News anchors are also asking, "Why aren't we covering black-on-black crime?"
Stewart: "Yes! Why all the interest in holding police officers to a higher standard than gangs?" The audience laughs at the absurdity he so deftly pointed out.
What About Chicago?
Anchors point out that there were 42 people shot in Chicago over the weekend, so why aren't people protesting there? Why aren't Al Sharpton and Jesse Jackson making visits to the Windy City?
Stewart: "Yes! What could explain the lack of outrage about Al Sharpton and his ilk not doing anything about black-on-black violence in Chicago?" Stewart then shows a clip of Sharpton and other African-American leaders holding an anti-violence summit in Chicago in November.
Stewart then rattles off a list of similar initiatives being made in regards to gang violence and ends with the brilliant quip: "You being ignorant of those attempts doesn't mean the issue itself is being ignored, in the same way that when it snows where you live doesn't mean that the world isn't getting hotter."
Sean Hannity Teaches Us How to Get Pulled Over
Then comes Sean Hannity's blithering as he explains what he normally does when a cop pulls him over. As a licensed gun owner, he responsibly warns the officer that he has a gun and he even pulls up his shirt to show the weapon.
Stewart: "You really do have no f*****g idea, do you? Basically you're saying if only Michael Brown, instead of holding his hands over his head, had reached down to his waist and lifted up his shirt to show the gun he did not actually have. Well, this whole tragedy could have been avoided."
Do We Really Know That This Story Is About Race?
Stewart plays a mishmash of clips of Fox News anchors saying things like, "Is this story about race? Do we really know that?" and "It is playing the race card." Then, like that one kid who shouts out "4 plus 3 is 8" in the back of the class, one talking head exclaims, "You know who talks about race? Racists."
A completely baffled and bemused Stewart: "Did you just 'he who smelt it dealt it' racism?"
Stewart finally addresses the Fox News anchors' concerns directly by explaining to them, "This isn't just all about one man killed in one town. It's about how people of color, no matter their socioeconomic standing, face obstacles in this country with surprising grace."
Stewart ends the segment with some parting words of wisdom: "Race is there. And it is a constant. You're tied of hearing about it? Imagine how f*****g exhausting it is to live it."
Do you all get it now?
Images: Comedy Central