• DOUBLETAKE 08: “Taking a second look at race and racism in the 2008 presidential elections”

  • Campaign Events

    Sat, October 25th, 3-6:30pm
    The Ballot Box and Beyond
    UCLA Labor Center
    675 S Park View St [map it]
    Los Angeles, CA 90057

Remember the “Terrorist Fist Jab?” What about the “White Power Grab?”

Earlier this summer, Fox News reported on a simple gesture between Barack and Michelle Obama on stage. It was a fist bump, but the Fox News reporter questioned, “A fist bump? A pound? A terrorist fist jab? The gesture everyone seems to interpret differently.”

Fox News’ coverage of the Obamas’ fist-bump raises serious questions about the implications of such coverage. Why do we need such an elaborate analysis of, what essentially amounts to a goodbye/ good luck send-off gesture? Do we do the same thing when it comes to handshakes?

Of course we don’t because handshakes are the primary greeting among white folks, so therefore they are normal, but “the fist bump” is something that, within the lens of whiteness, is odd or peculiar: it is outside whiteness. More accurately, it is cast as something specific to black folks; not something the majority of white folks would do, much less understand.

Fox’s report sets up the experience of black folks as foreign to what is normal, where normal is equated with whiteness. And the assumption that whiteness is normal is thoroughly racist.

We made this video to point out what it would look like to flip the script on the racist assumptions of Fox’s report. While there are some subtle critiques of white supremacy, we primarily wanted to point out how patently absurd Fox’s coverage of “the fist bump” is, not to mention have a little fun in the name of white anti-racism!

“Leftists to destroy white male power structure,” says Bill O’Reilly.

At least he’s got something right. We could probably dedicate a whole blog to O’ Reilly’s racisms… but what stands out about this one is … Senator John McCain’s response. McCain had the opportunity to say “Now wait a minute, Bill. I’m running to represent this nation- and that includes everyone, not just those who fit the the ‘white christian male power structure.'” Another anti-racist opportunity lost by our white leaders.

Taking a Stand against Fox News coverage

Hip hop artist Nas joins with national organizations to oppose Fox News racist coverage of presidential elections.

MoveOn.org, ColorOfChange.org and BraveNewFoundation joined together to object racism in Fox News coverage of ’08 presidential election campaign.

From MoveOn.org:

Over the last several weeks, FOX has had a string of incidents that many believe are a veiled attempt to prey on racism and intolerance and cast the Obamas as “outsiders”: an on-screen graphic referred to Mrs. Obama as “Obama’s baby mama,” a pundit “confused” Obama with Osama and then joked they should both be assassinated, and an anchor called a loving fist bump between Barack and Michelle a “terrorist fist jab.” In February, Bill O’Reilly talked about calling a “lynching party” to deal with Michelle.

The organizations gathered 620,127 signatures on petition and delivered to Fox New headquarters on Wednesday, July 23, 2008. Hip hop artist NAS joined representatives of MoveOn.org and ColorOfChange to deliver petitions to Fox News Headquarters.