Entertainers in Murdoch’s Media Empire Speak Out Against Fox News

Entertainers in Murdoch’s Media Empire Speak Out Against Fox News

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For years, the Murdoch family has been able to maintain a separation between its Fox News network and its sprawling, left-leaning entertainment empire.

But that corporate buffer seems to be disintegrating, with several prominent creators of hit TV shows expressing disgust in recent days with the 24-hour news channel’s coverage of the Trump administration’s border security policy.

Steve Levitan, the creator of “Modern Family,” which airs on ABC but is produced by Fox’s television studio, wrote on Twitter on Tuesday that he was “disgusted to work at a company that has anything whatsoever to do with @FoxNews.” The film director Paul Feig echoed those sentiments, writing that he had made two films for the 20th Century Fox movie studio but “cannot condone the support their news division promotes toward the immoral and abusive policies and actions taken by this current administration toward immigrant children.”

Those tweets came several days after Seth MacFarlane, the creator of “Family Guy,” said he was “embarrassed” to work at 21st Century Fox after the Fox News host Tucker Carlson told viewers not to trust other news networks.

Fox News declined to comment on Tuesday.

The criticism has erupted as the future of 21st Century Fox remains in limbo. Both The Walt Disney Company and Comcast are bidding tens of billions of dollars for control of most of the entertainment assets owned by Rupert Murdoch. Fox News would not be part of either sale.

On Monday night, several Fox News commentators defended the zero-tolerance immigration policy that has resulted in more than 2,300 children being taken from their parents after crossing the border. Laura Ingraham, on her show “The Ingraham Angle,” described the centers where the children were being held as “essentially summer camps.”

“Since more illegal immigrants are rushing the border, more kids are being separated from their parents and temporarily housed in what are essentially summer camps, or, as The San Diego Union-Tribune described them today, as looking like basically boarding schools,” she said, pointing to an article about one site in Southern California.

Ms. Ingraham then said that “liberals have seized on the ‘separated children’” — putting the term in air quotes — “and turned the entire image into a political weapon, attempting to emotionally manipulate the public perception of immigration enforcement.”

Tucker Carlson said on his show, “Tucker Carlson Tonight,” that Democratic politicians and media personalities had given more attention and funding to migrant children than to American children removed from parents serving prison terms.

“This is one of those moments that tells you everything about our ruling class,” he said. “They care far more about foreigners than about their own people.”

A day earlier, the conservative commentator Ann Coulter was a guest on the Fox News show “The Next Revolution with Steve Hilton,” where she referred to migrant children who had been seen in widely circulated footage as “these child actors weeping and crying on all the other networks 24/7 right now.”

Turning to face the camera, she asked President Trump to “not fall for it.”

As Mr. Hilton began to interject, Ms. Coulter described “how these kids are being coached, they’re given scripts to read by liberals,” citing a story published nearly seven years ago in The New Yorker magazine, which she later posted on Twitter.

Suketu Mehta, who wrote the article in 2011 about an immigrant from Africa, said in an email that Ms. Coulter “grossly misrepresents my writing” and that his article “substantiates none of her despicable stances on Trump’s child hostages.”

“My article illustrates the complexities of the asylum system,” Mr. Mehta wrote, “and how even those with a legitimate claim to asylum are forced to create or embellish narratives that will satisfy the whims of a broken system.”

(Original source)

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