If Elisabeth Hasselbeck wasn’t already considered a rabble-rousing know-nothing, she certainly laid claim to the title this week with her comments on the Black Lives Matter movement. On Monday’s edition of “Fox & Friends,” she asked a contributor why Black Lives Matter had yet to be labeled a hate group, especially considering recent events.
EOnline reported September 1 that Elisabeth Hasselbeck, still trying her best to prove she’s less intelligent than her “Fox & Friends” co-hosts (Steve Doocy and Brian Kilmeade), asked the question of conservative contributor Kevin Jackson after showing clips of protesters at the Minnesota State Fair chanting about “pigs in a blanket” and the shooting of Texas Deputy Darren Goforth by suspect Shannon Miles.
“Kevin, why has the #BlackLivesMatter movement not been classified yet as a hate group?” Hasselbeck asked. “I mean, how much more has to go in this direction before someone actually labels it as such?”
The key question here is: What is Hasselbeck talking about? Although the chanting at the fair, performed during a march by Black Lives Matter activists, was reprehensible and a bit childish, it is protected free speech. Consider also that the movement is expressly designed to call attention to police brutality and corruption and the chant is not actually directed at the vast majority of honest, hard-working police officers. And as for the Texas shooting, there has yet to be found any evidence of alleged cop killer Shannon Miles, a former mental patient accused of the cowardly act of shooting the Harris County deputy 15 times in the back, to the Black Lives Matter movement. In fact, this was only an assumption by the Harris County sheriff. So Hasselbeck’s point was, given the set-up, what exactly? Besides, of course, simply casting aversions on the Black Lives Matter movement altogether?
But Hasselbeck was not alone. Jackson, an African American, said Black Lives Matter was a “stain on the nation” and that the recent developments were “par for the course.” The contributor, who has become famous as a race-baiter and liberal-basher, piled on: “Well, they should do it, but unfortunately it’s being financed by the leftists. Ironically it’s people who have nothing, really no concern at all about black lives.” He eventually concluded his lambasting with the all-too-familiar go-to argument of conservatives when talking about problems within the black community, that those problems revolve around the utterly simplistic and questionable “lack of whole black families.”
But Jackson’s opinions on the movement itself are based in ignorance as well. Black Lives Matter is a civil rights activist movement that started with the outrage felt concerning the treatment of African Americans by law enforcement and the justice system, a direct outgrowth of the shooting death of unarmed teenager Trayvon Martin at the hands of George Zimmerman and the latter’s subsequent acquittal of murder charges in 2013. It has gained strength in the past year following the deaths of several unarmed black men and women (Michael Brown, Eric Garner, Walter Scott, Freddie Gray, Sandra Bland, and many others). Still, despite Elisabeth Hasselbeck and Kevin Jackson’s ridiculous comments, not to mention the conservative mass attempt to target the activists and blame the organization for recent violent acts (especially against cops), the movement itself has been primarily peaceful, staging demonstrations and protest rallies across the United States whenever a matter of police injustice appears to present itself.
But a hate group? That, Black Lives Matter is not. To become part of that grouping, it would have to take on elements of intolerance and racial and/or religious exclusion and, in more extreme circumstances, become involved in acts of targeted violence against certain demographics. In short, it would have to become something akin to the Ku Klux Klan.
The group answered Elisabeth Hasselbeck via their Facebook page Thursday, stating that those of “Fox & Friends” and their ilk were not “actual journalists” but “TV personalities sensationalizing tragedy to further their own agenda at the cost of reason, justice, and democratic rights of black people everywhere to demand an end to police violence and mass incarceration.”
“The Black Lives Matter Network is a love group,” the statement continued. “We seek a world which ALL black lives matter, and racial hierarchy no longer organizes our lives or yours. This is a vision of love. As black survivors of white supremacy, our hearts go out to all victims of violence.”