As If Fox News Suspending Clueless Contributor Will Change Anything

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Fox News suspended two of its on-air contributors today. In separate incidents responding to President Obama’s Oval Office address Sunday night, Lt. Col. Ralph Peters and Stacey Dash (on Fox Business Network and Fox News Channel, respectively) used profanities on the air amidst disparaging remarks about President Obama. And one of them looks… strangely familiar. Stacey Dash, who played Dionne in Clueless, was a guest on Fox News’ Outnumbered when she said that the president does not “give a shit” about terrorism. True to the network’s virulent partisanship about which there should be absolutely no surprise, Dash was unapologetic for her sentiments. “Consequences. Some of us have to pay them. Gladly,” she later Tweeted. Meanwhile, on Varney & Co., Peters, 63 years old, called the president a “pussy”. Peters did apologize after host Stuart Varney admonished him for his “strong” language. Again, the apology was for his inappropriate language, not what was truly offensive about his sentiments. Worse, he stood by it. “The American people understand where I'm coming from on this,” Peters said; “My choice of words was incorrect, but my sentiment, I think, is shared by many.” Both Dash and Peters have at least two weeks of suspension to think again. “Fox Business Network and Fox News Channel do not condone the use of such language, and have suspended both Peters and Dash for two weeks,” according to a prepared statement by Bill Shine, senior executive vice president of programming for both networks. Disparaging and misogynistic use of “pussy” from the elderly white man aside, the profanities themselves are beside the point. This sort of incendiary political rhetoric is endemic and destructive, word choice notwithstanding. But while Donald Trump continues his TV takeover, spewing racist, fascist rhetoric like today’s call for a “total and complete shutdown of Muslims entering” the U.S., Fox News’ gesture is barely a raindrop in the tsunami of toxic sewage that is American political discourse of late.

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