Words You Don’t Want to Hear

If you’ve built an empire based on love of country, Christian morality, family values, baseball, apple pie, hot dogs, John Wayne movies, and mom, there are words you never want said about you, especially in a law suit filed in the New York Supreme Court.

But, that’s exactly what recent happened again to Fox News. This time the claimant is former Fox personality Andrea Tantaros and the subject is once again, sexual harassment against Roger Ailes, Bill O’Reilly, and others. Tantaros suit includes this statement:

“Fox News masquerades as a defender of traditional family values, but behind the scenes, it operates like a sex-fueled, Playboy Mansion-like cult, steeped in intimidation, indecency, and misogyny”

Seriously, there is no surprise here, the casting couch is as old as civilization. I’m sure sexual harassment occurs elsewhere in the television industry but it seems Fox has set itself apart from others by making it a cultural condition of employment.

jimmy swaggart
Swaggart in 1988

This thing with Fox is nothing new, it’s just one more example of an individual or group claiming to be the defender of all that’s good, only to learn the truth is something very different. Who can forget Jimmy Swaggart’s I Have Sinned speech? Or the Jim and Tammy Bakker Show, co- starring Larry “Wide Stance” Craig, the anti-gay Idaho US Senator who spent too much time in airport men’s rooms. And never forget the former GOP Speaker of the US House of Representative being found guilty of sexually abusing young boys when he was a public school teacher.

The list is long and not exclusive to any political party, organization, or religion. But it does seem that in so many cases the offenders are those who claim to be the protectors. It also appears that the majority of offenders come from the far-right of the ideological scale.

I had a coffee drinking farmer friend once tell me that among the rules he lives by was, “Never claim the moral high ground.” He knew, as do I, that the moral high ground is a very slippery slope.

Addendum: Couple of days after writing this blog this story broke. And once again, it was a very conservative moral high grounder who took the fall from grace.

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