Fox News is in turbulent waters.
As Fox employees wait to see whether Disney or Comcast will triumph in the battle for their parent company, creators are taking umbrage at the way in which Fox News is covering the Trump administration’s “zero-tolerance policy” of separating migrant children from their parents. Several of the nation’s most prominent actors, producers, and writers have voiced their contempt with the news arm of Fox, and a few have vowed to leave it altogether.
Mostly, folks are appalled at the way in which Fox News has dutifully defended Donald Trump’s immigration policy. The president’s favorite television show — Fox & Friends — is intent on promoting the blatant lie that the child separations are the result of a Democratic Party-backed law rather than Donald Trump’s personal orders.
Fox News host Tucker Carlson told his viewers last Friday that they should distrust all news reports of the child-separation policy from any network other than Fox News. “If you’re looking to understand what’s actually happening in this country, always assume the opposite of whatever they’re telling you on the big news stations,” he said.
Two days later, Ann Coulter appeared on Fox News’ The Next Revolution where she looked directly into the camera and warned Donald Trump not to trust images of children crying at the border after having been taken from their families because they were of “crisis actors.”
“These child actors weeping and crying on all the other networks 24/7 right now, do not fall for it Mr. President. I get very nervous about the president getting his news from TV,” added Coulter, missing the irony.
The day after that — yesterday— Fox News pundit Laura Ingraham compared the already overcrowded, underfunded, and understaffed detention centers in which migrant children are kept to “summer camps.”
On Saturday, actor and Family Guy creator Seth MacFarlane tweeted about his embarrassment at working for Fox, citing Tucker Carlson’s willfully cruel and ignorant remarks about the immigration crisis.
In a series of tweets Monday morning, filmmaker Judd Apatow wrote that the Fox family “promotes evil ideas and greed and corruption,” and called on Fox employees to speak out against their parent company’s coverage of the atrocities being committed by the Trump administration on the U.S.-Mexico border.
Modern Family co-creator Steve Levitan was moved by the words of MacFarlane and Apatow, and announced his intention to leave Fox, writing how the words espoused by their news arm “is the opposite of what Modern Family stands for.”
Producer and director Paul Feig also voiced his condemnation of Fox News operations.
“It’s important to speak up when your boss is the propaganda arm which promotes putting children in cages and holding them hostage so Trump can build a wall,” Apatow wrote in response to Levitan’s announcement. “What other stars, showrunners or executives from Fox will speak up against this madness?”
Much of Hollywood has condemned the White House’s immigration policy as cruel and heartless. Stars like Reese Witherspoon, Kumail Nanjiani, Alyssa Milano, Jim Carrey, Mindy Kaling, Mark Hamill, John Legend, Chrissy Teigen, Jessica Chastain, Lin-Manuel Miranda, Oprah Winfrey, Common, Willie Nelson, Ellen DeGeneres, Jimmy Kimmel, and Stephen Colbert, to name a few.
In other words: MacFarlane, Apatow, Feig, and Levitan are in good company.