|Lou Dobbs (Mediabistro)|
Dobbs also has a history of using inflated numbers when it comes to scaring his viewers into believing that illegal immigration is the product of the devil himself. For instance, he once had a correspondent on his show who said that there were 7,000 cases of leprosy, attributing the large rise in leprosy cases (which turned out to be a false report in the first place) to our "open" borders. Dobbs also has said that illegal aliens make up 1/3 of our federal prison system - another incorrect "fact."
But it is not Dobbs' lack of fact-checking or his xenophobic stance on illegal immigration that spurned this post. It is his recent comments concerning race, particularly Condaleeza Rice's statement that America has a "birth defect" in its history (slavery) and this makes it difficult to discuss race honestly and frankly. She says that the legacy of slavery and its repercussions still reverberate today (which, in my opinion, they do). When Dobbs heard this, he lost it. The irony of his tirade is that his comments prove Rice's point. When he is about to call black politicians who argue what Rice has said "cotton pickers" he is embodying what is wrong with America today and its history:
Now I'm not going to argue about what he said. He clearly said "cotton" and then puckered his mouth up to start with a "p". The only combination I can think of with the word "cotton" and a word starting with the letter "p" is "cotton picker," which, of course, is a derogatory name aimed at black people due to the institution of slavery that this country (indeed, the Constitution) condoned and allowed to thrive.
What is even more interesting is the fact that CNN tried to clean up the transcript of Wolf Blitzer's show that night (another CNN anchor who has made dumb statements in the past). The word "cotton" was nowhere to be found in the transcript, which can be read here. From what I can understand neither Dobbs nor CNN has made a statement regarding his comments. I'll be interested to see how this works out, but my guess is that Dobbs will not be punished or anything like that. His sensationalism that he calls "The Lou Dobbs Show" brings in ratings and money talks, even more than Dobbs does.