Earlier this week, Fox & Friends co-host Elisabeth Hasselbeck asked: “Why has the Black Lives Matter movement not been classified yet as a hate group? I mean, how much more has to go in this direction before someone actually labels it as such?”
On Thursday, representatives of that organization issued a statement that instead referred to Black Lives Matter as “a love group” and criticized Hasselbeck for “sensationalizing tragedy” to further her own agenda.
“This statement is in response to the shamefully false allegations about the Black Lives Matter network by Fox pundits and other right-wing TV personalities,” the document stated. “This is an official statement and should be attributed to the Black Lives Matter network, including our 26 chapters nationwide."
“Instead of reporting the news, Fox pundits and other right-wing TV personalities are making false accusations that put black lives at risk,” the statement asserted.
The message continued:
Those responsible for these distortions are not actual journalists. They are TV personalities sensationalizing tragedy to further their own agenda at the cost of reason, justice and the democratic rights of black people everywhere to demand an end to police violence and mass incarceration.
This is a typical right-wing reaction to the growing influence of a movement for black lives. There is no real story here, except the same old unsavory attempt by sensationalist right-wing media to delegitimize a grassroots racial justice movement that is growing in power and influence.
“Don’t be fooled,” the organization continued. “We’re targeting the brutal system of policing, not individual police. The Black Lives Matter network seeks to end the system of policing that allows for unchecked violence against black people."
“Right-wing portrayals of this as targeting of individual police are deliberate distortions to derail growing public debate about white supremacy, the ongoing epidemic of violence against black people and the need to end institutionalized racism in the policing and criminal justice systems,” the organization's release then charged.
“The Black Lives Matter network is a love group,” the notice stated. “We seek a world in which all black lives matter, and racial hierarchy no longer organizes our lives or yours. This is a vision of love."
The statement also noted:
As black survivors of white supremacy, our hearts go out to all victims of violence. We know all too well the pain and suffering of losing loved ones to interpersonal and institutional violence.
That’s why we call for an immediate end to the centuries of brutality against black people by the police and by white vigilantes.
“We also demand economic policies that rebuild black families and communities destabilized by violent and regressive rules that make the one percent wealthy and impoverish or indebt the rest of us,” the statement concluded. “These are demands of love.”
According to the statement, the Black Lives Matter network was launched in 2013 as an online call to end unchecked police violence against black bodies and an offline response to a society that systemically devalues black life.
As NewsBusters previously reported, Hasselbeck -- a former co-host on ABC's weekday program called The View -- asked black guest Kevin Jackson: “Why has the Black Lives Matter movement not been classified yet as a hate group?'
“In the light of the recent execution-style shooting of a white police officer in Texas and the Black Lives Matter protest at the Minnesota State Fair,” Hasselbeck and fellow co-host Brian Kilmeade interviewed conservative Kevin Jackson – who has a website called The Black Sphere.
Jackson responded that the movement should be labeled a hate group but will not be because it is “being financed by leftists.”
“My question was NOT my opinion; it was for my guest and was the St. Paul group (NOT entire BLM) calling for cops to be ‘fried like bacon,’” Hasselback retorted.
The segment drew a tremendous online response, with one of the most unusual coming from Hasselbeck's former co-host on ABC's The View program, who tweeted that “some r slow 2 wake.”
The interview centered around the shooting of Texas Deputy Darren Goforth and a Minnesota Black Lives Matter demonstration during which activists chanted “Pigs in a blanket, fry them like bacon” while referring to police officers.
Before long, Jackson also entered the Twitter feud, maintaining his stance against Black Lives Matter and calling the group a “disgrace to black people.”
“Sick of liberals meddling with black people,” he also tweeted.
The Black Lives Matter social movement gained momentum shortly after policeman Darren Wilson was not charged in the shooting death of attacking black teenager Michael Brown in 2014 in Ferguson, Missouri.
It will be interesting to see how many protests will take place once we hit the cold and snowy winter months. That'll show how much "love" and determination these activists really have.