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Andy Ostroy Headshot

Why Megyn Kelly Needs to Apologize

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The fallout continues over Megyn Kelly's controversial "Santa and Jesus are white" declaration last week on her Fox News program "The Kelly File." Yet there's been no apology, only a terse defense of her statements as "tongue-in-cheek" while accusing her critics of having "knee-jerk" reactions and of "race-baiting."

Ya gotta love some conservatives. They make outrageous, offensive remarks and then when criticized for it they turn the tables and play the victim. Their logic is pretty convoluted: it's not the folks who actually make the racially insensitive comments who are the race-baiters, it's those who condemn them for it who are race-baiting:

"The fact that an offhand jest that I made during a segment about whether Santa should be replaced by a penguin has now become a national firestorm says two things: race is still an incredibly volatile issue in this country and Fox News and yours truly are big targets for many people."

She was referring to the Aisha Harris's piece in Slate last week suggesting that Santa Claus is not white and that he should actually be a penguin.

Kelly lashed out at her detractors, as have many readers of my blog last week on this subject, accusing liberals of having no sense of humor:

"Humor is a part of what we try to bring to this show but sometimes that is lost on the humorless."

Well Megyn, clearly we liberals have a different sense of humor than you conservatives. We find nothing funny about a white, blond Fox News anchor staring into a camera and unequivocally asserting to black children that Jesus and Santa Claus are white. The "humor" is lost on us. In fact, your comments were quite striking and absent the "jest" you cite. They were quite calculated and mean-spirited.

Kelly needs to apologize, just as she and other conservatives have demanded from countless liberals (Martin Bashir anyone??) who've made remarks they deem offensive.

To be sure, the Megyn Kelly Santa saga reminds us of something ugly and pervasive in our society today: that there's still a lot of white people around who vociferously defend other white people who believe everything white is right.

So yes Megyn, you're absolutely right about one thing: race is still an incredibly volatile issue in America. Aided in no small part by you and Fox News.