Issuing a harsh rebuke to his own employers for taking “the path of least resistance” by declining to report on allegations of sexual assault against movie producer Harvey Weinstein, MSNBC anchor Chris Hayes on Monday night was widely applauded for taking a different path.
In his closing monologue on his show “All In with Chris Hayes,” Hayes compared NBC News executives with hundreds of Republican lawmakers and government officials who refuse to speak out publicly against President Donald Trump amid reports that they privately express grave concerns about his policies and decision-making.
“The insidious destructive force of the path of least resistance is everywhere you look,” Hayes said. “Heck, I feel the tug of it myself as my own news organization is embroiled in a very public controversy over its conduct.”
Hayes’s former NBC colleague, journalist Ronan Farrow, spent months reporting on allegations against Weinstein in 2017—allegations which would help spark the worldwide #MeToo social justice movement.
But, Farrow suggests in his new book, Catch & Kill, the network refused to air the reporting out, correctly predicting that the Weinstein story would lead to scrutiny of one of its own longtime anchors—former “Today Show” host Matt Lauer.
“In Farrow’s view, he was unable to break through what was effectively a conspiracy of silence from NBC News management,” Hayes said.
Please watch this excellent closing statement by @chrislhayes
To stand up this way against his bosses at NBC News is remarkable
I should note what makes this even more remarkable is Andy Lack (NBC News Chairman) isn't a big fan of Chris/his show
Chris is stepping out here pic.twitter.com/vXnQkJd4eq
— Yashar Ali 🐘 (@yashar) October 15, 2019
While NBC has claimed Farrow’s reporting was not adequately sourced to air, the reporter went on to publish an explosive article in The New Yorker about the Weinstein allegations just two months later.
After leaving NBC News, Hayes said, Farrow was able to do “the kind of journalism that you want to do as a journalist, that everyone who works in this business should want to facilitate.”
On social media, Hayes won applause for taking what many media critics called a brave stance against his powerful employer.
— Ryan Grim (@ryangrim) October 15, 2019
— Krystal Ball (@krystalball) October 15, 2019
Chris Hayes reminding us all why we need an unfettered free press https://t.co/XIBoyzg4CV
— Will Bunch Sign Up For My Newsletter (@Will_Bunch) October 15, 2019
.@chrislhayes is modeling exactly where our journalism should be in 2019. Too many outlets bend to the powerful when the very institutions they represent are supposed to operate as a check on that power.
When I had dreams of being a journalist it was to uplift Truth like this: https://t.co/UDgEa8SR4c
— Matt Deitsch (@MattxRed) October 15, 2019
Journalism professor and media critic Jay Rosen wrote that Hayes’s statement could mark the beginning of a reckoning at NBC—through a possible change in leadership or an independent investigation into Farrow’s departure from the network.
After Hayes’s monologue, Rosen wrote, “status quo won’t hold.”
WATCH: John Oliver exposes Trump’s lies about vote-by-mail — and the Fox News ‘cult’ claiming the election is already ‘rigged’
"Last Week Tonight" host John Oliver's main story Sunday refuted President Donald Trump's latest crusade against vote-by-mail. Trump announced on Twitter that the more people who vote in an election, the more Republicans tend to lose. So, he wants fewer people to have access to the ballot in November, even if people are too scared to go out during the coronavirus crisis.
Oliver called out Missouri Gov. Mike Parson (R-MO), who outright told people not to vote if they were too afraid to vote in the local elections next week.
"Well, hold on there," Oliver interjected. "Voting is a right. It has to be easy to understand and accessible to anyone."
John Oliver rips Fox News’ Tucker Carlson for urging ‘order’ from people of color — but never demanding it of police
John Oliver opened his Sunday show, shredding Fox News host Tucker Carlson for uring "order" among protesters, but refusing to urge "order" to police and "wannabe police" who can't stop killing people.
It's a lot, Oliver explained. "How these protests are a response to a legacy of police misconduct, both in Minneapolis and the nation at large and how that misconduct is, itself, built on a legacy of white supremacy that prioritizes the comfort of white Americans over the safety of people of color."
While some of it is complicated, Oliver conceded, most of it is "all too clear."
Cars set on fire blocks from White House as DC protests turn violent
The Washington, D.C. protests turned violent as the city approached the 11 p.m. curfew the mayor instituted Sunday afternoon.
The policy of D.C. police is that when they are attacked, they advance forward. So, when fireworks were fired, the line of officers began pushing the protesters back further from the White House. Behind the line of police officers also stand a line of National Guard troops that President Donald Trump has demanded stand watch in the city.
Lights that normally shine on the White House have also been turned off, reporters revealed.