HuffPost’s incitement of racial hatred

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Continued from “Letter to HuffPost’s top advertisers”

Summary

Racism is defined as:

“prejudice, discrimination, or antagonism directed against someone of a different race based on the belief that one’s own race is superior”

This page contains evidence from a sampling of incidents in which HuffPost incited racial hatred, based on false, inflammatory claims, conspiracy theories and wildly-decontextualized allegations — all of which its senior executives have publicly they prohibited.

 


Contents

(1) HuffPost published an editorial at the very top of its front page that claimed, “White people ruined America”

(2) HuffPost published an editorial on its front page that claimed, “White political forces steal elections”

(3) HuffPost published an editorial near the top of its front page that claimed, “The Klan won last night”

(4) HuffPost’s publicly-stated content standards and practices


(1) HuffPost published an editorial at the very top of its front page that claimed, “White people ruined America”

On November 10, 2016, HuffPost published a racist editorial at the top of its front page, that led to a story page which contained a sub-headline that read:

“It’s pretty clear who ruined America: white people.”

10nov16-nordstrom-white-people-ruined-america-calloutnordstrom-white-people-ruined-america-markup

Note that HuffPost positioned this incitement-based racist editorial under an ad for Nordstrom (above), and on its front page, next to an ad for State Farm insurance:

white-people-ruined-america-fp-callout


(2) HuffPost published an editorial on its front page that claimed “White political forces steal elections”

On March 11, 2016, HuffPost published an editorial on its front page that was entitled:

“4 Ways White Political Forces Steal Elections and How We Can Stop It”

03-11-2016-fphl-22-13-whites-stealing-electionsExcerpts (emphasis added):

A personal tweet I sent out this week said: “Let’s be clear — and Christian: A vote for Donald Trump is a vote for racism.” […]

Donald Trump is appealing to the worst instincts of white people, and American history has shown how ugly and violent those white instincts can be. He is right when he claims to be bringing out people that have never voted before — but he leaves out that those new voters are angry white people.

At the same time we’re adding them to our voting rolls, there are active political forces directly engaged in trying to block and diminish the turnout of black, Hispanic, Asian, and Muslim voters. They’re doing so in four ways.

First, as Michelle Alexander explains in The New Jim Crow, political strategies now connect the deliberate mass incarceration of black and brown men and women with the subsequent and purposeful political disenfranchisement of those millions of people of color when they return to society. […]

As HuffPost knew, or should have known, each of these inflammatory claims and conspiracy theories (whcih HuffPost claims it has strictly prohibited), and those that followed, can be easily debunked.  For example, the bulk of what the writer claims are examples of “whites stealing elections” are actually examples of bipartisan measures, practiced for decades.  As in the case of mandatory minimum prison sentences, they were enacted under a Democratic president (Clinton), and authorized by a Democratic Congress (sources 1, 2).  Instead of being honest about this, however, apparently trusting that the general public is unaware of these facts, the writer connects the things about which he complains exclusively to Republicans in general, and Trump in specific.

And as HuffPost also knew, or should have known, this editorial writer, Jim Wallis, whose editorial screeds it has posted weekly on its front page for years, is an inflammatory radical leftist who sees pretty much everything through the prism of racial and religious intolerance.  This even includes an outrageous statement he made about one of the U.S. military’s most heroic achievements – when it assassinated Osama Bin Laden:

Pumping our fists in victory or celebrating in the streets is probably not the best Christian response to anyone’s death, even the death of a dangerous and violent enemy. […] The chants of “USA, USA, USA” are also not the best mantra for believers who should know that they are meant to be Christians first and Americans second.

Further, he said that it is Americans who should repent for the Islamist terror attacks on them:

The violence of terrorism, the violence of war, and even the violent reprisal against Osama bin Laden on Sunday should all push us to deeper reflection, and even repentance, for how we have allowed the seeds of such destruction to take root and grow in our hearts and in our world.

This is also not the first time that Wallis has made a false charge of racism.  In 2010, at HuffPost, he said:

“There is something wrong with a political movement like the Tea Party which is almost all white. Does that mean every member of the Tea Party is racist? Likely not. But is an undercurrent of white resentment part of the Tea Party ethos, and would there even be a Tea Party if the president of the United States weren’t the first black man to occupy that office?”

It is ironic that Wallis would publish such an editorial at HuffPost, given that at the time, it was provably far less racially diverse than the Tea Party was, at this time, as documented by the Huff-Watch blog.

Is HuffPost racist? By its own standards, it would appear so, Huff-Watch, May 2, 2010.  Excerpt:

75% of America is white; 79% of the Tea Party is white (Gallup). Yet as this article documents, apparently 0% of HuffPost’s top executives, reporters and editors are black.

As documented in the above blog article, here is a picture of HuffPost’s employee 2009 Christmas party – which looks almost so purely white it might be mistaken for a Klan rally – and is far less diverse than the Tea Party at that time:

huffpost-christmas-2010


(3) HuffPost published an editorial near the top of its front page that claimed, “The Klan won last night”

On November 9, HuffPost published an editorial, positioned near the top of its front page that claimed, “The Klan won last night. Excerpt:

And it wasn’t just Donald Trump who won last night—it was his supporters too. The Klan won last night.

This hateful screed was written by Hollywood writer Aaron Sorkin, and as shown in our report, “Basic facts about the presidential election — and HuffPost’s fury at its predictions being so wildly wrong,” HuffPost knew, or should have known, that exit polls showed conclusively that Trump won significantly more black and Hispanic votes than Gov. Romney did in 2012.  Instead, HuffPost and Sorkin completely ignored this fact.

Update: Sometime between November 9-25, HuffPost selectively edited the “Klan” line out of its version of the editorial (screencap), but it remains at its original source, Vanity Faire.  (screencap).  Apparently, HuffPost determined that this line had done its job, and it had nothing to lose by removing the line, after-the-fact.


(4) HuffPost’s publicly-stated content standards and practices

“If you’re looking for the usual flame-throwing, name-calling, and simplistic attack dog rhetoric, don’t bother coming to the Huffington Post.”

– Arianna Huffington interview with Newsweek

“[At HuffPost] there are guidelines that have to be followed — and they include a prohibition on conspiracy theories or inflammatory claims […] what the great historian Richard Hofstadter called ‘the paranoid style in American politics,’ which he defined as angry minds that traffic in ‘heated exaggeration, suspiciousness, and conspiratorial fantasy,’ and that see ‘the fate of conspiracy in apocalyptic terms… always manning the barricades of civilization’.”

– Arianna Huffington blog article

“[W]e believe strongly that the Huffington Post Community should be a safe and welcoming space for all individuals, groups and their ideas. As such, any rudeness, insults, hate, hostility, or negativity may be removed… [W]e are dedicated to maintaining a respectful, engaging and informative conversation.”

– HuffPost comment policy

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