New charges of racism in right-wing media

The Washington Times recently published a racially charged full-page ad featuring a chimpanzee in which President Obama’s citizenship is questioned. The ad is titled “Obama’s lack of eligibility” and features the  chimp in three different poses, with the subtitle “Congress, courts, media” beneath each animal.

The ad is paid for by a “birther” organization,, run by Charles F. Kerchner, Jr., who has filed a suit in New Jersey challenging the president’s citizenship according to the Huffington Post.

While the subtitles link the  images of the  chimp to Congress, the courts and the media, the racial inference is clear, particularly in light of the controversy sparked when the New York Post published a cartoon directly referring to the president as a chimp.

The New York Post has recently been sued by two employees, Austin Fenner and Sandra Guzman, for racially motivated firings after they protested the cartoon. Guzman claims sexual harassment as well. Fenner was fired the day Guzman’s suit was filed.

Guzman’s complaint filed earlier in the year details male Post staff members displaying lewd photos as well as proffering permanent positions in exchange for sex. Guzman details rife editorial discrimination, including the paper’s refusal to allow her to attend an event with Judge Sonia Sotomayor to which she had been invited.

Fenner charges that he was barred from the newsroom by employers. writes, “The lawsuit also claims that for nearly six months, Fenner was banned from the newsroom by Michelle Gotthelf, the Post’s metropolitan editor, his direct supervisor, as well as Daniel Greenfied, the assignment editor and deputy metropolitan editor. If Fenner wanted to enter the newsroom, he would need permission in advance.”

Robert Murdoch, owner of the Post, apologized for the ad.

In a separate development Murdoch claimed commentator Glenn Beck was correct in calling President Obama a racist.

Photo: / CC BY 2.0


Joe Sims
Joe Sims

Joe Sims is co-chair of the Communist Party USA. He is also a senior editor of People's World and loves biking.