Earlier this week, 49 year old Craig Tamanaha allegedly set ablaze the 50 foot Christmas tree outside the NewsCorp building in Manhattan, home to Fox News and a host of other conservative media outlets.
At this time, no evidence has been reported that suggests Tamanaha's motives were political.
Since the tree-burning, Fox News hosts have leapt to paint the crime as a story of the network's own resilience. Fox & Friends host Ainsley Earhardt said the tree represented everything from "freedom" to "Jesus" to "Hanukkah." Far-right host Tucker Carlson said it was unfair that intelligence entities supposedly investigate the burnings of Qurans, but not the burnings of Christmas trees. Outnumbered co-host Kennedy said the "firebug little bastard" was "not gonna keep us down."
Fox News on mass shootings and genuine threats to democracy: ...
Fox News when its Christmas tree burns: "You firebug little bastard, you're not gonna keep us down." pic.twitter.com/g9f7KYL8ba
— The Recount (@therecount) December 9, 2021
Of course it isn't strange for a network to cover an arson that took place outside of its headquarters, but CNN host Brianna Keilar pointed out the disproportion with which Fox covered the Christmas tree burning and how it covered other issues, such as the deadly January 6 insurrection carried out by extremists supporters of former President Donald Trump.
Check out her comments below.
After playing a montage of Fox hosts mourning the tree, Keilar rejoiced that no one was hurt before pointing out the discrepancy:
“It is incredibly scary to feel that your workplace is under attack, unless— your workplace is the Capitol. Then, according to many, many Fox hosts, it’s not such a big deal.”
She went on to play clips of Fox News hosts downplaying the deadly insurrection, saying things like "99 percent of [the rioters] were peaceful" and "they don't look like terrorists, they look like tourists." Other Fox guests and hosts said the rioters were there to "defend our Republic" and mocked police officers who defended the Capitol with sarcastic acting awards.
“At Fox, when the target is a Christmas tree at their workplace, it is a sacrilege, but when the target is the seat of American democracy, it’s not. ... Just imagine if Fox hosts could muster, for an armed attack on the Capitol, the same outrage that they did for their Christmas tree. Perhaps some of the almost half of Republicans who think Jan. 6 was a legitimate protest might actually see it for what it really was.”
By and large, people agreed with the CNN host.
Gotta love @brikeilarcnn. She tells it like it is every time.
— Spunky🐱 (@SpunkybyChance) December 9, 2021
Well she’s right
— suzel (@suzel10535209) December 9, 2021
Brianna Keilar nails it. “Imagine if Faux news covered the Jan 6 attack like they did the attack on their Christmas tree.”
— caring 💙🇺🇸🌈✌🏻 (@caringguy1957) December 9, 2021
Brianna Keilar knocks it out of the stadium on this one!
Brianna Keilar reacts to Fox News' Christmas tree arson coveragehttps://t.co/OF4ftq8dTb
— corvid 317 (@corvid317) December 9, 2021
She wasn't the only one calling the network out.
Fox News having more somber, serious coverage of a burning Christmas tree than of an armed insurrection on the country’s seat of government would be funny if it weren’t so sad.
— Santiago Mayer🧣 (@santiagomayer_) December 9, 2021
Hey @FoxNews: how about you give as much coverage to someone shooting up a school as you do someone firing up a Christmas tree?
— Randi Mayem Singer (@rmayemsinger) December 8, 2021
To the best of my knowledge, this is the one and only Christmas tree burning. In the last decade, how many Synagogues? How many Mosques? How many black churches? Where was the outrage of the right then? How much coverage did fox news give them? As you sow, Fox news. As you sow.
— Max Burbank (@max_burbank) December 9, 2021
Fox News guest calls out Fox News for their obsessive coverage of a burned down Christmas tree, and lack of coverage of anti-vaxxers…and the host cuts him off. pic.twitter.com/bYaVdx69Wp
— Mike Sington (@MikeSington) December 9, 2021
FOX "NEWS" has wall to wall coverage of their Christmas tree fire. Meanwhile on November 29th, someone set multiple fires targeting Islamic places of worship and the FBI is investigating....TOTAL SILENCE from FOX "NEWS" on that one.
— Boulder_Tim (@Boulder_Tim) December 9, 2021
Fox has since erected and relit another tree.