The news media, including Fox News, operates a bit like an old boys club when it comes to commentary. I don’t mean that in a gendered fashion, but in the sense that there are a lot of hangers-on who really offer nothing of value to the discourse, yet their tenure keeps them on air.
One of those people is Geraldo Rivera. Most famous for the joke that was opening Al Capone’s “vault,” the former talk show host still manages to appear on a variety of Fox News shows. What his actual expertise is in any given area is anyone’s guess. He’s certainly not a magnetic personality, nor does he appeal to any given segment of the viewership either on ideological lines.
Now, Geraldo has got himself into some hot water over his latest comments on Andrew Cuomo. Have a look.
I am legitimately shocked by this:@GeraldoRivera live on Fox News making excuses for Cuomo’s serial sexual assault/harassment by saying: “He’s a 63 year old, single guy, living in Albany, the most boring town in America. He’s all by himself”
Fox News should disavow immediately pic.twitter.com/7idfq3PSU7
— Benny (@bennyjohnson) March 2, 2021
Again, what’s the point of this? Do Fox News’ viewers, especially those that watch Sean Hannity’s show, want to be subjected to a guy with a bad mustache telling us how Andrew Cuomo is the real victim here because he’s old and lonely? Not the mention that the “he’s just old school” approach to excusing the harassment of women just doesn’t fly anymore. Further, Cuomo wasn’t just being flirty. He kissed a woman against her will, touched other women in uncomfortable ways, and tried to proposition one aide to play strip poker with him. The latest allegation even comes with photographic evidence.
As Dan Bongino explains in the above clip, the other issue is that Cuomo held himself up as a protector of women and a champion of “believing” allegations. He attacked Brett Kavanaugh, demanding he take a lie detector test. He noted in 2013 that anyone facing allegations should resign. Yet, the rules suddenly change when it’s Cuomo himself in the crosshairs? No, that’s not how this works, and Geraldo should be smart enough to take that into account instead of making weak excuses for the man. Lastly, even forgoing the sexual harassment claims, the far bigger issue here is that Cuomo’s disastrous policies killed thousands of seniors, an act he actively covered up. Why defend that person?
Does Fox News want to appeal to their broader audience and repair the damage done to their brand, or do they want to keep fossils like Geraldo and Juan Williams around providing nothing of value? With their ratings having declined precipitously since last year, they probably ought to start investigating their approach more seriously, making the necessary changes.