What great suggestions. This is not my problem, but I love the creative solutions for keeping a sense of connection.
The problem is not the news network, the problem are the smug attitudes by those whom don't want anyone else to think differently, and their failure to respect the opinions of their loved ones for whom they disagree.
@2: If someone believes and promotes lies, of course it'll affect my respect for them and their ability to understand the world. You're not entitled to respect if you promote mistruths and harm.

I do however disagree that patronizing them with "stigmatizing faux news" will do anything so I just ban political discussion when visiting and especially with the spouse around.
@2 The smug and superior attitude is absolutely vital for those who peddle lies. You have already created a leg-up on anyone who would challenge those lies. You can deny any facts cited with that attitude with no loss of face. It is a way of teaching the adherents how to dispense the lies to others. Your comment is like saying, "Gee, it wasn't the airplanes that destroyed the city, it was all the bombs they dropped." The attitude and lies go hand-in-hand, and are both instinct elements of what Fox is trying to accomplish.
@2, "Respect is earned, not given."
@2: I'm not sure who (not whom) you believe has the smug attitudes, the Fox News watchers or the liberals who disagree with Fox News?

I've seen a few posts on social media that condemn the liberal side for not being "tolerant" of conservative views. As if they were equivalent neutrals, like preferring Coke to Pepsi. Why should liberals be expected to tolerate intolerance? As Undead says, those who follow the Fox News party line are actively promoting hatred of -- even violence toward -- others. Sorry, but that is not a difference of opinion that I can respect.
Smugness seems to be the theme of the week with articles here and on vox and at slate.

This is great advice but we really need to stop calling the places where people live "flyover" states. I wouldn't listen to anyone who denigrated my home like that.
Ms Fan - You get to the heart of the matter. The battle may well be who gets to control the definition of tolerance. The standard Christianist definition appears to be kowtowing compliance. (To people of that frame of mind I reply that I tolerate a good deal, and that it cuts closer to home than what they tolerate.) I don't want people with whom I agree to adopt that definition from the other side. The developing Safe Space Culture that no-platforms any dissenting voice fills me with dread. I've been no-platformed and may be again if the other side regains the ascendancy and extracts revenge.

Now you and Ms Rand may well argue that one side has All The Truth and the other has none. I'll have to worry about that for a while before being able to pronounce.
@9: "The developing Safe Space Culture that no-platforms any dissenting voice fills me with dread."

Great, but don't lie to my face and regurgitate racist hoaxes if you want to keep friends.

Fox is free speech. Free, terrible, asshole speech.

Pretending your rights are violated because someone thinks less of you for repeating hoaxes and lies does not make you a free speech champion, is this really a battle you want to provoke with loved ones? Have you seriously bought in (even in Devils advocacy) to the idea that you must support assholes and fools to save "speech"? Fox is being banned as much as Christmas, which is to say not at all.
I would suggest being worried about being lied to cheerfully over "all the truth", which is not my concern. All the media has a rightward slant, it's not like you can't get those perspectives from CNN, MSNBC and others, just slightly less racist and terrible.
It is strange when the right to speech is brought up when discussing the content of the speech of assholes, the stigma of Fox is well earned and their free speech is not being impeded.

Sure is funny how well they have some persons conditioned.
Extra props for The Economist, well worth reading.

Totally agree. People who live in NY or LA and have never left, and claim those cities are the only places anyone would ever want to live, are the embodiment of smug and pretentious attitude.
#5 (German Sausage): I’m going to disagree with you on that. “The Brainwashing of my Dad” (the documentary Dan keeps talking about) really resonated with me, because when you lose a parent to Faux News, it’s actually like they have been possessed. My mom was a pot-smoking hippy who was left of center my whole life. Now she filled with rage all the time and rants and raves hysterically at me over the phone. It’s a mind-boggling transformation that I wouldn’t wish on anyone, but it’s still somewhat comforting knowing there are other Faux News orphans out there.
My in-laws recently got cable and my FIL has been having accelerating dementia, so now when he visits he sits and watches fox news and nods off occasionally leaping up in newfound outrage. It is really depressing.
My brother and I had a Fox "news" intervention with my mother and now we like her a little more, and she reports feeling less angry all the time.
Very cool letter. So impressed with the positive approach.
This is good advice for any unhealthy negativity or focus a friend or family member is stuck in. There's some subject you just have to avoid with some people and if those things come up, and you can't easily steer away from them, the letter writer has a very nice way of putting it: I love you and want to enjoy time with you... Wish I could follow that advice myself.
@8, 14: Nooo!!! I love the blithe dismissal of my "flyover" state: it keeps some proportion of pretentious assholes away and the cost of living low. I have a similar attitude toward neighborhood anti-crime initiatives, especially in conveniently located areas where the crime rate is the only thing preventing all of the current residents from being priced out due to gentrification.

We just came across your feedback and wanted to respond. We're sorry you had a negative reaction to our project and our website. We don't aggressively fundraise -- in fact, we've been spending our own money to get this project off the ground because we believe it's so important and necessary. As a husband-and-wife team, we're doing our best to give people who write into us asking for help the one-on-one support/advice they need to begin repairing a relationship with a Fox-affected friend or loved one while also taking our popular "deprogrammer training" to any group, church or organization that asks us to come.

We've held dozens of trainings this past year and are getting lots of positive feedback from people we're meeting across the country. We hope you'll give us a second look. I think you'll find our "Deprogrammer Guide" to be very helpful and specific:…. You can also take a look at the kinds of conversations that we're teaching people to have -- ones that de-tribalize the interaction and the create the space for someone to stop and think, and have a moment of realization about media influence. This conversation is from the Fox News Town Hall with Sean Hannity and Donald Trump that was held in Pittsburgh in April:

Right-wing media is a cultural poison, but they didn't change the country overnight. It took a good 30 years of fear-mongering misinformation to get us to this point, and it's going to take some time to bend the curve back. But we can do it, one step at a time.

We hope you and others looking for help will continue to get in touch. You can reach us anytime at 412-370-5247 or - Erin Ninehouser, Co-Director,

Please wait...

Comments are closed.

Commenting on this item is available only to members of the site. You can sign in here or create an account here.

Add a comment

By posting this comment, you are agreeing to our Terms of Use.