The left-wing lynch mob that has been trying to destroy conservative commentator Laura Ingraham for her gentle mockery last week of David Hogg has already succeeded in frightening advertisers away from the host’s Fox News Channel show.
Since launching his career in big-money leftist televangelism weeks ago, Hogg has been spewing hatred and venomous lies about anyone who doesn’t toe the party line. His belligerent in-your-face activism has also been driving up sales of firearms and ammunition and boosting the membership rolls of groups like the National Rifle Association and Gun Owners of America.
Hogg has been especially focused on accusing his enemies of wanting children to die. “It just makes me think: What sick f**kers are out there that want to sell more guns, murder more children, and, honestly, just get reelected?” Hogg told The Outline. “What type of person are you, when you want to see more f**king money than children’s lives? What type of sh**ty person does that?”
Hogg has also called the NRA “child murderers,” NRA spokeswoman Dana Loesch “disgusting,” and Republicans “sick f**kers.”
Hogg is a student at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Broward County, Fla., where former student Nikolas Cruz massacred 14 students and three school employees on Valentine’s Day.
Ingraham has blamed “mental illness” and “broken or damaged families” for the massacre, which is consistent with the evidence, given that Cruz has serious psychiatric problems and had a difficult upbringing, losing his sole remaining parent in the months before the attack. Others have pointed out the multiple failures at every level of government that kept Cruz out of the criminal justice system, as well as the left-wing Annie E. Casey Foundation’s Juvenile Detention Alternatives Initiative (JDAI) that helped to make the young man the mass murderer he is today.
Ingraham said a March 14 student walkout for gun control was not an “organic outpouring of youthful rage.” It was “nothing but a left-wing, anti-Trump diatribe.” This comment angered a lot of left-wingers.
After the Feb. 14 atrocity, the Left promptly anointed Hogg a victim and moral authority and declared that survivors of the shooting were exempt from criticism – except of course for surviving students who support the Second Amendment. The tired old rhetoric of the gun-hating movement was given new life by high school students like Hogg.
But teenagers can only get so far. Within days the movement was commandeered by the media-savvy professional Left. Groups such as Michael Bloomberg’s Everytown for Gun Safety, George Soros-funded groups Media Matters for America (MMfA) and MoveOn.org, Planned Parenthood, and Indivisible have helped to organize last month’s March for Our Lives.
Although Hogg’s earlier effort in recent weeks to scare off corporations that do business with the NRA met with mixed results - including a delightfully spirited backlash by Second Amendment supporters against the obnoxious 17-year-old’s push for gun control - the attacks on Ingraham’s advertisers have been succeeding.
Media Matters for America, a left-wing hate group that masquerades as a media watchdog, has been enthusiastically promoting the assault on Ingraham’s corporate sponsors, providing Hogg’s cause with hundreds of thousands of dollars in free publicity. According to MMfA, the following companies have indicated they won’t continue advertising on the show: Nutrish, TripAdvisor, Wayfair, Expedia, Nestle, JoS A. Bank Clothiers, Johnson & Johnson, Hulu, Stitch Fix, Jenny Craig, Office Depot, Honda, Liberty Mutual, Principal, Miracle-Ear, Ruby Tuesday, and Atlantis, Entertainment Studios, and Bayer.
An apology by Ingraham to Hogg has done little to stanch the advertiser exodus from the show that airs weeknights at 10 o’clock Eastern.
What did Ingraham say that was so horrible?
Last Wednesday (March 28), Ingraham tweeted a link to an article stating Hogg had been rejected by some colleges. She accused Hogg of whining about it, which in fact he had done:
“David Hogg Rejected By Four Colleges To Which He applied and whines about it. (Dinged by UCLA with a 4.1 GPA... totally predictable given acceptance rates.)”
Hogg’s 14-year-old sister, Lauren, took to Twitter to supportively whine about what a big meanie Ingraham was being to her brother.
“How low are your ratings @IngrahamAngle that you have to start attacking my brother’s grades to get attention?” she tweeted March 28 at 7:35 p.m. “If you ask me, he is more articulate than you and has far better character.”
At 8:54 p.m., she tweeted at First Lady Melania Trump: “HEY @FLOTUS MY BROTHER IS LITERALLY GETTING CYBERBULLIED BY @IngrahamAngle. ANY COMMENTS?”
At the same time, David Hogg urged his Twitter followers to put the heat on Ingraham’s advertisers. “Soooo @IngrahamAngle what [sic] are your biggest advertisers ... Asking for a friend. #BoycottIngramAdverts [sic.]”
On cue, MMfA President Angelo Carusone encouraged Hogg to go after Liberty Mutual and Bayer, which he described as “2 really big named sponsors” of Ingraham’s show.
“Just a general word of caution: be careful with advertiser lists unless you really know the source they came from and how they [were] compiled[,]” Carusone tweeted. “Pulling accurate and up-to-date advertiser info is a big effort...and it's important that you always work from accurate and thorough sources.”
The next day at 1:06 p.m. Ingraham tried to walk back her previous tweet.
"Any student should be proud of a 4.2 GPA -- incl. @DavidHogg111[,]” she tweeted.
“On reflection, in the spirit of Holy Week, I apologize for any upset or hurt my tweet caused him or any of the brave victims of Parkland. For the record, I believe my show was the first to feature David [...] immediately after that horrific shooting and even noted how 'poised' he was given the tragedy. As always, he's welcome to return to the show anytime for a productive discussion.”
Hogg refused to accept the peace offering, tweeting:
“I 100% agree an apology in an effort just to save your advertisers is not enough,” he tweeted. “I will only accept your apology only if you denounce the way your network has treated my friends and I [sic] in this fight. It’s time to love thy neighbor, not mudsling at children.”
When it’s convenient, Hogg is a heroic activist; when it’s not, when he doesn’t feel like arguing or feels outgunned, he says it’s unfair to pick on children.
And think about this: The campaign against Ingraham’s advertisers didn’t spring directly from a disagreement about gun control, the National Rifle Association, or the Second Amendment. The bullying effort is based in Hogg’s hurt feelings. The catalyst was Ingraham lobbing the gentlest of insults at the thin-skinned teen who is quite comfortable slinging the most vicious, vile insults at anyone who disagrees with him.
Although what Hogg is doing has widely been described as a boycott, it really isn’t a boycott campaign – it’s more of an intimidation campaign aimed at driving Ingraham off the airwaves by scaring her advertisers away. Ingraham has the wrong views so she must be removed from political debates.
The Left calls this kind of action an “accountability” campaign. Accountability, as they use the term, is not about transparency or best practices. Inspired by the so-called father of the New Left, Herbert Marcuse, who favored shutting down non-leftists, accountability actions focus on harassing and intimidating political enemies, disrupting them, and forcing them to waste their resources dealing with activists’ provocations.
Ultimately, it is about destroying the target.
Fox News is standing behind Ingraham, at least for now.
"We cannot and will not allow voices to be censored by agenda-driven intimidation efforts," Jack Abernethy, co-president of Fox News, told the Los Angeles Times. "We look forward to having Laura Ingraham back hosting her program next Monday when she returns from spring vacation with her children."