What to do about such abhorrent comments? Address them, of course.
Before the weekend expired, Fox News issued this statement: “We strongly condemn Jeanine Pirro’s comments about Rep. Ilhan Omar. They do not reflect those of the network and we have addressed the matter with her directly.”
The Erik Wemple Blog has asked Fox News just how it has “addressed” the matter directly with Pirro. We’ve had no response yet. We’re eager to know how this goes, because it goes frequently. As we noted in a previous post, Fox News is always addressing one matter or another:
That PR formulation — we’re addressing the matter — makes periodic appearances in Fox News crisis archives. Like when Hannity appeared onstage with Trump at rally (“This was an unfortunate distraction and has been addressed.”); or when it was revealed that Fox News anchor Bret Baier had played a round of golf with Trump (“addressed the matter”); or when Andrew Napolitano made evidence-free claims about the alleged wiretapping of Trump (“the matter was addressed internally.”); or when “Fox & Friends” ran a four-minute video slamming President Barack Obama (“We’ve addressed the video with the producers and are not going to discuss the internal workings of our programming any further.”); and when the network had to admit a “breakdown” in covering the story of Shirley Sherrod (“will be addressed internally”).
More: Geraldo Rivera once tweeted about how the TV business is a “flirty” occupation, a remark that appeared to minimize the behavior of fired NBC News personality Matt Lauer. “Geraldo’s tweets do not reflect the views of Fox News or its management. We were troubled by his comments and are addressing them with him,” said a statement from the network.
Fox News is the place where these “matters” arise all the time. If it isn’t Tucker Carlson saying that immigrants make the country “dirtier,” then it’s Sean Hannity promoting President Trump, or Pirro saying something offensive, or some contributor saying something offensive, or some other contributor saying something offensive and on and on and on.
There’s just so much to “address” that maybe all those efforts to “address the matter” aren’t helping much.