The Media Matters report said Fox News ran at least 30 segments on the voluntary program between March 29 and March 31, including one segment from anchor Shannon Bream that called the girls “illegal immigrant children.” A friendly reminder: not only is asylum legal, Congress has designated specific protections for unaccompanied minors under the Trafficking Victims Protection Reauthorization Act. It was the “law and order” administration that decided that asylum law was optional.
“Many of those making these criticisms insisted that their qualms are not with the general idea of educating migrants, but claimed that doing so while other children are still attending school remotely is effectively prioritizing migrant children over Americans,” Media Matters continued. One chyron read, “outrage after migrant kids get in-person learning” (following a tried and true right-wing model, create the outrage and then report on the outrage). Oh, but they also had plenty to say about children getting any learning, period.
America’s Newsroom cohost Bill Hemmer complained, “You sit at home and you stay on Zoom for a year, right, or you cross the border and you get free education,” the report said. On that same show, Fox Nation host Lawrence Jones called the teachers who are volunteering their time “activists” (so?) and claimed that allowing children to access education was “creating more incentive.” Keep in mind America’s Newsroom is supposed to be one of the network’s hard news shows.
“All children in California, regardless of immigration status, have a constitutional right to education,” Gothold said according to Border Report. “We also have a moral obligation to ensure a bright future for our children. School employees have already been asked to go above and beyond during the pandemic, and we are committed to ensuring every student has access to a quality education while they are in our region.”
Fox News’ attack on children follows its racist lie about asylum-seekers spreading COVID-19. Media Matters reported last month that Fox News has aired at least 90 segments on this topic since Jan. 26. The majority of these segments—65—aired the month Texas Republican Gov. Greg Abbott recklessly lifted pandemic restrictions and then falsely claimed asylum-seekers were the real superspreaders. One-third of the segments came on what Fox News calls its “’news’-side shows,” Media Matters said.