• 23-year-old news anchor Tomi Lahren is under fire for calling Black Lives Matter “the new KKK”.
• An Internet petition calling on her to be fired from her employer, The Blaze, has almost 50,000 signatures.
• Lahren defended herself on CNN on Sunday morning, saying “I’m allowed to have my feelings and my opinions.”
• A Baltimore Sun columnist also appearing on the CNN program denounced Lahren, saying “as a journalist, what you did appalls me.”
• IMPORTANT UPDATE: On Tuesday, Lahren doubled down in her “Final Thoughts” segment on The Blaze, blaming President Obama and “two black attorney generals” for the violence in Dallas.
A petition to fire The Blaze‘s outspoken news anchor Tomi Lahren is picking up steam.
23-year-old Lahren, a South Dakota native, is known for her controversial commentaries, which have often put her in the limelight. This time, however, she’s drawing far more controversy than usual.
Following news that five police officers had been shot at a Black Lives Matter rally in Dallas, Texas Thursday night, Lahren set Twitter on fire by likening Black Lives Matter to the Ku Klux Klan, and blaming supporters of the racial justice movement for “applauding this war on cops.”
Tomi Lahren deleted her vile tweet calling the BLM movement the new KKK. We still have it, you horrible human. pic.twitter.com/0Sf6WiVhY7
— Golden Lady Wallace (@MissKlept) July 8, 2016
At the time of her writing, it hadn’t been determined whether Black Lives Matter organizers had anything at all to do with the shooting. Since then Dallas Police have said the principal suspect appears to have acted alone.
This was not the first time Lahren had expressed similar sentiments. In a video that reached millions of people last year, she caught the Internet’s attention by calling out Obama’s “half-way, half-baked, tip-toe, be-friendly-to-Jihadis mentality” and blaming him for caring more about “Muslim sensitivity” than the lives and honor of US Marines, in the wake of the Chattanooga shootings.
As for Lahren’s Friday morning Tweets, as soon they went live, an angry nethead launched a Cpetition, addressed to various media organizations (none of which own The Blaze), asking these powers that be to somehow “Remove Tomi Lahren From TheBlaze.” The petition quickly met its goal of 15,000 signatures, and the goal was then raised in a succession of steps — it’s now aiming for 75,000.
The description read:
Everyone has a voice and an opinion. However, when the wrong voice is given a platform and is allowed to influence an audience of millions by perpetuating derogatory ideology toward select groups of individuals, this is where the injustice lies. Tomi Lahren (although her words are laden with passion and emotion) lacks the knowledge and experience to effectively communicate and facilitate … Should a biased, misinformed, 23-year-old with no background in law, law degree, life experience, or experience in Government be the political voice of a generation that will change this nation?
Tomi Lahren appeared Sunday on CNN’s “Reliable Sources” where she defended her incendiary comments.
Media critic David Zurawik, also a guest on the program, got into an argument with Lahren, telling her, “You did go too far, Tomi, You did.”
“That is your opinion,” Lahren fired back.
“No, it’s not,” said Zurawik. “I wish it was your employer’s opinion. That’s really reckless, that kind of tweet at the situation we’re in. As a journalist, what you did appalls me … That’s the end of it. I’m trying to be civil about this.”
Lahren replied, “I’m not a journalist, I’m a commentator … I’m allowed to have my feelings and my opinions and I stand behind the things that I say because the thing that hurts people the most is when you’re honest, when you look at something from an honest lens from your perspective and you bring that forth, you are immediately labeled for it and you are immediately criticized.”
Lahren has always been vocal in her criticism of Black Lives Matter, initially characterizing the group’s goals as spreading the dogma that “black lives matter more“ than white lives. She’s also chastised them for “ripping off the historical band aid” and refusing to let “America” heal.
Lahren and the Blaze, which is owned by Glenn Beck’s Mercury Radio Arts, have yet to respond to the petition.