CNN this weekend invited a "diversity consultant" on its "Saturday Morning" program that actually likened black Tea Party members to Jews that worked as guards in Nazi concentration camps.
For his part, host T.J. Holmes did a fairly good job of playing devil's advocate to his two race-baiting guests, Dr. Marc Lamont Hill of Columbia University and Luke Visconti, owner of Diversity Inc.
Despite Holmes's efforts to impart some balance to the discussion -- imagine that! -- the schedulers might have done a better job finding an opposing view to the disgustingly offensive anti-Tea Party rhetoric on display.
Unfortunately, after reading some of what Tea Party Express's Mark Williams wrote at his blog Wednesday, a sickening hatefest against the movement commenced (video follows with transcript and commentary, h/t NBer math4life):
On Monday’s Joy Behar Show on HLN, when guest Mark Williams of Tea Party Express complained to Behar and fellow guest Ari Melber of the Nation about Tea Party activists being smeared as racist, the HLN host claimed that she had not brought up race during the segment, even though she opened the discussion by referring to stereotypes about Tea Party activists as she cracked that perhaps public opinion "might drive people to stop making racist signs and wearing hats made of teabags." Behar introduced the segment: "The anti-government sentiment that has driven the Tea Party movement seems to be working as four out of five Americans say they don`t trust the government. I wonder if these same sentiments might drive people to stop making racist signs and wearing hats made of teabags."
But Behar and Melber later developed amnesia as Behar claimed, "We didn’t mention race":
On Wednesday's American Morning, CNN's Ed Lavandera focused on the "overwhelmingly white" turnout at the rallies sponsored by the Tea Party Express organization and played up the criticisms that there is an "anti-minority undertone" at the demonstrations.
Lavandera, who is covering the Tea Party Express' cross-country tour, highlighted the race issue from the beginning of his report, which first aired 13 minutes into the 8 am Eastern hour: "The crowds turning out for the Tea Party Express rallies are overwhelmingly white. Is this lack of diversity a problem for the Tea Party movement? We're taking a closer look."
The correspondent noted some of the apparently "subtle efforts to make the tea party appear diverse," such as a hip hop performance and speeches by black tea party activist Lloyd Marcus. Marcus stated that "there's not a lot of black folks here, basically, because they haven't seen the light yet. They are still hypnotized by the first black or African-American president. But they haven't really looked at the man and what he's doing." This assertion is supported by a Gallup poll from earlier in March that found that President Obama's approval rating among blacks is at 89%, down slightly from 96% in August 2009.
Either host Dylan Ratigan was trying to play to MSNBC's rabid liberal audience or he really has it in for the Tea Party movement based on some exaggerated notion it is nothing but hate and fear mongers. In an interview with Mark Williams, a conservative talk radio host and sometimes spokesman for the Tea Party Express, Ratigan asked Williams what he was doing to separate his legitimate effort from radical fringe elements in American political culture.
"Mark, how do you draw the bright line between the very admirable and understandable principles that are advocated by so many in the Tea Party as it pertains to a Constitutional definition of a democracy, separation of things like banking and investing, church and - I mean, you go to all these things, and those who would choose a more radicalized view or racist view and hide, if you will, inside of the Tea Party umbrella?" Ratigan said.
CNN’s Roland Martin picked up where Anderson Cooper left off on Monday’s AC360, claiming that there’s “the beginnings of a civil war” in the GOP and that Tea Party protesters “want to radicalize the right” in the party. Martin also claimed that the Democrats are more of a “big tent” than Republicans: “You have a Democratic Party that has no problem having liberal...moderate...and conservative Democrats.”
The liberal political contributor appeared with Tea Party Express’s Mark Williams for two segments starting three minutes into the 10 pm Eastern hour. Cooper first sought Martin’s take on the New York 23rd congressional district race. Unsurprisingly, he forwarded the Chris Matthews/mainstream media spin on the contest: “There is no doubt you are seeing the beginnings of a civil war play out, in terms of folks who are saying that we do not want moderates, in terms of being involved in this party.”
Later in the segment, after Williams highlighted how Republican candidate Dede Scozzafava endorsed Democrat Bill Owens after she withdrew from the New York 23 race, Martin struck back with his “big tent” claim about the Democrats: “You talk about endorsing a Democrat. I’m sure Mark has no problem with former Democrat Joe Lieberman saying he’s going to campaign for Republican candidates....You have a Democratic Party that has no problem having liberal Democrats, moderate Democrats, and conservative Democrats. What Republicans are saying is, we don’t want any liberal or moderate Republicans. We only want conservative Republicans, and you cannot expand a party nationally only having just conservative Republicans. You’re not going to win long-term.”