Think you know everything about former CNN anchor Rick Sanchez, his “controversial” remarks about Jon Stewart and why he was fired from CNN? You don’t.
In 2010, Rick was let go by CNN over comments he made about Jon Stewart, minorities and discrimination during a radio interview. This incident was widely misreported by the media.
- Did you know that Rick never said that Jews control the media? This isn’t spin: Christopher Hitchens made this point. So did The Washington Post. And even The Maynard Institute took journalists to task for this major failure in honest reporting.
- Did you know that Rick apologized to Jon Stewart personally?
- Did you know that Rick apologized publicly several times—including through a publicly issued statement and an appearance on Good Morning America? And then again on Nightline?
- Did you know that Jon Stewart said Rick shouldn’t have been fired?
- Did you know that Abe Foxman, head of the Anti-Defamation League, and Rick have become friends through this ordeal? That Rick apologized to the ADL, has gone to Israel and even addressed the ADL’s National Executive Committee?
- Did you know that CNN’s ironically titled show Reliable Sources erroneously and falsely reported that Rick said Jews control all the banks even though Rick never said this, never discussed anything other than minorities in the media and never even said the word “bank”? To this date, neither CNN, Howie Kurtz nor Reliable Sources have issued a correction, retraction or apology.
So how did things get reported so wrong? Rick’s quotes were part of an hour-long interview and most people, both journalists and the public, never heard them in context. Soundbites were taken and edited together. And instead of what reporting what Rick said, the media reported what they said he had “implied” or “insinuated.”
The resulting headlines got the story wrong—very wrong—and unfortunately, the headlines overrode reality.
Silenced and on the sidelines, Rick was powerless to correct the record. His many apologies were drowned out by the buzz and hype surrounding the story. And within 48 hours, the media had moved on to feast on some other story leaving the truth and Rick’s reputation by the side of the road.
Several of Rick’s friends launched FriendsofRickSanchez.com in an attempt to correct the record and, at a minimum, to present information in one location so that people can learn the facts, educate themselves and judge Rick’s comments for themselves. There is no filter. In fact, most of the items on the site are simply Rick’s own words or those of journalists, colleagues and other media outlets.
People from the left and the right, as diverse as Christopher Hitchens and Lou Dobbs, came out in defense of Rick and made the case that his comments were not anti-Semitic. The information is now all in one place so you can make up your own mind. We hope you do.