On March 11th, The Huffington Post gave serial liar and race-baiter Andrew Breitbart billing on their front page, with a post in which he praises his protege James O'Keefe, reiterates proven-false claims about ACORN, and uses faulty logic to "prove" that no members of the Congressional Black Caucus were spit on or called "nigger" during the health care debate. Then yesterday, they did it again.
We reached out to Arianna Huffington and other leaders at The Huffington Post to ask why they'd give him cover -- but got no response. We need your help to hold the Huffington Post accountable and let them know it's unacceptable to elevate Andrew Breitbart and treat him like a credible commentator. There are two things you can do:
- Sign our petition to Arianna Huffington, and encourage your friends and family to do the same.
- Blog about this issue. If you have an account at the Huffington Post, blog about it there.
From the email we're sending to ColorOfChange members today:
Andrew Breitbart is a liar and a race-baiter. His method is to pose as a journalist, and then use deceptive tactics to gin up race-based fears, protect racists, and demonize Black political leaders and institutions. This is the man caught peddling deceptively edited video of Shirley Sherrod — the Black USDA official who was dismissed as a result of Breitbart's hateful propaganda. No credible news outlet has had Breitbart on since. ABC News rescinded its invitation for him to be a part of its election night coverage (after hearing from ColorOfChange members), and even Fox has turned its back on him since the Sherrod episode.
When ABC recently invited Bretibart to be part of their election coverage, thousands of ColorOfChange members emailed and called ABC to demand that they not give him a platform. We helped ABC realize what a big mistake they had made, and they eventually rescinded their invitation to Breitbart.
It's surprising and disappointing that The Huffington Post would choose to give Breitbart prominent billing on their site. The Huffington Post has been a great resource in many ways, but when it comes to legitimizing people like Andrew Breitbart, we need to hold them to the same standard as ABC and everyone else.
More from the email we sent to ColorOfChange members today:
The Huffington Post understands the power of featuring someone on its home page. It gives the author credibility and helps them spread their message. To give that placement to someone who has repeatedly shown complete disregard and hostility toward the truth, and who is a serial race-baiter, is irresponsible. It shows a lack of journalistic integrity, and it's frankly an insult to our communities.
Andrew Breitbart targets key people and institutions within our community, in particular those who have dared talk about the reality of racism and race in this country — Shirley Sherrod, the NAACP, President Obama, the Congressional Black Caucus. And he targets those that seek to increase Black political participation, like ACORN, which until Breitbart's fraud-based take-down had the strongest record of registering low-income Black voters in the country. Breitbart's approach is consistent — posing as journalists, he and his team manufacture false stories that work by preying on his viewers' race-based fears to lead them to incorrect conclusions. It's cynical and destructive.
The Huffington Post recently announced that it will be launching "HuffPost Global Black", a site focused on Black issues. It's especially galling that The Huffington Post would seek to attract Black audiences with this new site at the same time that it provides a prominent platform for Breitbart to continue spreading lies that have a real impact on Black people.
The Huffington Post's decision isn't about featuring conservative voices. Many conservative reporters and opinion-makers - like others across the political spectrum — attempt to be truthful and act with integrity. That doesn't mean they're perfect, but Breitbart is cut from a different cloth. He has no regard for honest debate, and conservatives with integrity see Breitbart as an embarrassment, a con-artist.
If The Huffington Post wants to be treated like a trusted source for news and opinion, this behavior needs to stop and we need to be assured that Breitbart will never again be prominently featured on the site. If we don't receive that assurance, then Black America and our allies should abandon The Huffington Post and get our information elsewhere.
Arianna Huffington needs to know that for our communities, this is a slap in the face. Please join us in calling on her to stop allowing her news organization to be a vehicle for Breitbart's deceptions, and demand that Breitbart not be given prominent placement on the site again.
Please tell Arianna Huffington to stop treating Breitbart as a credible commentator, and ask your friends and family to do the same: