Aside from his daily MSNBC hosting duties, Al Sharpton founded and serves as president of the tax-delinquest liberal National Action Network (NAN), which is at present heavily involved in a push for new federal gun control legislation.
This morning, MSNBC dutifully dispatched reporter Richard Lui to cover the NAN conference in New York City, from which Lui reported during the 10 a.m. Eastern Jansing & Co. program. Yet neither Lui nor host Chris Jansing felt it necessary to mention to viewers their colleague's connection to the group.
The April 3 segment featured highlights of numerous individuals killed by guns, mainly children. The purpose of the NAN conference according to Richard Lui was, "To make sense... of something to them that is so senseless." Of course, leaving issues of poitical bias aside, it's journalistically senseless to not note for full disclosure the Sharpton connection.
MSNBC already stretches if not breaks journalistic convention by giving a political activist a television program and numerous appearances on the network outside his hour of programming. This utter lack of disclosure attests to how glaringly careless MSNBC is with journalistic ethics.
It's also worth noting that the National Action Network has been the subject of heavy criticism for its failure to pay back rent to landlords as well as its delinquency with taxes. The New York Post reported that as of 2010, the NAN owed more than $1.25 million dollars in delinquent city, state and federal taxes and penalties.
Additionally, in 2009 the Federal Elections Commission slapped Sharpton with a $250,000 fine, for using NAN funds to cover the costs of his 2004 presidential campaign. If a conservative cable network host like Bill O'Reilly or Sean Hannity presided over such a dysfunctional operation while retaining their hosting duties at Fox News, you can imagine that MSNBC would have a field day ridiculing them for it, and insisting that Fox suffers a credibility problem because of it.
Sharpton himself has hardly been objective on the subject of gun control. The outspoken Democrat has been harping for greater gun control for months on his nightly show PoliticsNation. Below is a list of Sharpton using his role as host/NAN president to push for greater gun control, a fact MSNBC ignores:
See relevant transcript below.
Jansing & Co.
April 3, 2013
10:29 a.m. EDT
CHRIS JANSING: Next hour, President Obama heads to Denver, Colorado, where he'll make a new push for congress to pass tough gun control laws. Next week he'll also travel to Connecticut where today lawmakers are expected to vote on some of the toughest gun laws in the country. And gun violence is topping the agenda at the National Action Network's annual conference here in New York which just got under way. MSNBC's Richard Lui is there, and I know, Richard, that you were able to talk to some of the families devastated by gun violence.
RICHARD LUI: Yes Chris, we were able to talk with parents that were part of two local cases that became national cases because they happened in the backyard of the president. Jenia McFong was 18 when she was shot in the head. That story became well known because her sister that very same day had attended an anti-violence session with President Obama. Now Joe McFarland as well as Angela Blakely, the parents of Jenia, spoke to me and told me what they think needs to happen.
ANGELA BLAKELY: When you watch the news, you see other children -- you see other children on the news and I never thought I would see my daughter on the news doing this very thing. So just be careful, whatever their decision is with gun laws.
JOE MCFARLAND: The President is in the United States. Each person has to be president of their own home, meaning parenting, spending time with the young people.
LUI: There's also the story of Cleopatra Callie. Her daughter Hadia who they are talking about here at the national action network convention died at the age of 15. She was shot and killed by a stray bullet. For her, Cleopatra, the mother of Hadia, she said this is exactly what Hadia would want her to do because Hadia wanted to get into politics. Chris, these are reluctant, if you will, icons of an issue that has swept the nation as we debate gun control legislation. And for them they're trying to make sense as they discuss behind me at this first session at the National Action Network convention how to make sense of something to them that is so senseless.