To listen to “Fox & Friends” host Steve Doocy, the Wednesday night massacre at the Emanuel African Methodist Episcopal Church in Charleston, S.C., was a topic worthy of on-air speculation this morning on Fox News. Along with co-hosts Elisabeth Hasselbeck and Brian Kilmeade, Doocy chatted about the crime with E.W. Jackson, pastor of a church in Chesapeake, Va.
“We are urging people — wait for the facts, don’t jump to conclusions,” said Jackson, kicking off a round of jumping to conclusions. Doocy himself said this to Jackson: “It was released earlier and extraordinarily, they called it a hate crime, and some look at it as, well, it’s because it was a white guy, apparently, in a black church. But you made a great point just a moment ago about the hostility toward Christians, and it was a church. So maybe that’s what they’re talking about. They haven’t explained it to us.”
So Doocy & Co. decided to guess.
Over on CNN, some harder facts were emerging. Like this one:
Breaking news is just one of the many scenarios that bring out the clowntime on “Fox & Friends.” As a consumer of Fox News, the Erik Wemple Blog would like to issue a formal complaint: Back in September 2013, Fox News promised a new approach to breaking news piloted by anchor Shepard Smith — the idea was to have Smith “cut in” to Fox News programming and “take care of the breaking news.”
Why didn’t Smith “cut in” this morning? Word from a Fox News rep is that Smith had planned a few days off. So viewers are stuck with Doocy.