News commentator John Stossel, formerly of ABC News and now working for Fox, has called for the repeal of the Civil Rights Act barring business from discrimination.
Following up on Kentucky Senate candidate Rand Paul's similar comments to Rachel Maddow last week, Stossel took the issue even further calling for repeal of the legislation.
"It's time now to repeal that part of the law because private businesses ought to get to discriminate. And I won't ever go to a place that's racist and I will tell everybody else not to and I'll speak against them. But it should be their right to be racist," he said.
Paul ignited a firestorm of protest with his comments and has since retracted them. The tea party demagogue and GOP hopeful cancelled an appearance on Meet the Press. Stossel, so far, has refused to back down.
Fox News commentators and anchors like Glenn Beck have repeatedly made racist and insensitive comments, with Beck claiming President Obama "hates white people." Beck's remark initiated a movement to pressure corporate sponsors of his show to cancel their contracts. Over 100 have done so.
Colorofchange.org, which led the fight against Beck, has initiated a new one against Stossel. James Rucker the head of online movement said "It's time that Fox drop Stossel. If people like you stand up in huge numbers and Fox does not act, it will be clear that Fox stands with Stossel and his values - and we'll go directly after the network with a public campaign unlike anything we've pursued to date." Click here call for Stossel's dismissal http://www.colorofchange.org/stossel/?id=2025-618393
Stossel, on libertarian grounds, argues the federal government should not interfere with business, claiming such discrimination would hurt profits. Ample evidence shows racism boosts corporate profits.
In the mid-1990s Denny's restaurant was successfully sued under the Civil Rights Act by Black FBI agents who had been refused service in Virginia. More recently a Philadelphia area swimming pool was also forced to open its doors to Black and Latino children.
Some see Stossel's goal as to "mainstream" the fringe thinking underlying the tea party movement. Others simply as giving respectability to blatantly racist views. Eric Deggans of TampaBay.com writes, "The scariest thing about right-leaning media outlets such as Fox News Channel is that they can make the nuttiest fringe notions sound like reasonable issues for debate."
CNN commentator Lou Dobbs resigned under pressure after repeatedly voicing anti-immigrant views. Civil rights, labor, and media organizations launched a broad campaign against Dobbs.
Photo: John Stossel vies to be the new face of "acceptable" racism. CC