EXCLUSIVE: Fox runs with another bogus War on Christmas story?
Research ››› ››› JULIE MILLICAN & CHRISTINE SCHWEN
Fox & Friends reported that a school in central Florida had banned the "traditional Christmas colors" red and green from classrooms. In a statement to Media Matters, the school's district spokesperson, Regina Klares, has denied this, stating, "There is not a ban on the colors red and green at Heathrow Elementary."
Fox runs with story, claims teachers are "not going to let red and green in the classroom"
WESH.com reports an anonymous parent's claim that red and green are banned at Heathrow Elementary. On November 24, WESH.com in Orlando reported that one parent of a student at Heathrow Elementary claimed the students can't use Christmas colors:
One parent said classrooms can't show Santa Claus or use traditional Christmas colors.
"You can't use red and green," a parent said. "It's ridiculous." [WESH.com, 11/24/10]
Fox & Friends ran with the story, claiming teachers are "not going to let red and green in the classroom." Fox & Friends co-host Gretchen Carlson ran with the story on November 29, stating that teachers are "not going to let red and green in the classroom." Carlson gave no indication that they attempted to contact the school to verify the story.
Fox Nation: "School Bans Christmas Colors." On November 29, Fox Nation linked to the story under the headline, "School Bans Christmas Colors." Fox Nation linked to Fox News Radio host Todd Starnes' blog, in which Starnes discussed the original WESH report. Starnes asked readers: "Has your school district declared a war on Christmas? If so, contact Todd." From Fox Nation:
[Fox Nation, 11/29/10]
School district tells Media Matters there is no ban
School district spokesperson: "There is not a ban on the colors red and green at Heathrow Elementary. In an interview with Media Matters, Seminole Country School District spokesperson Regina Klares stated: "There is no ban on the colors red and green at Heathrow Elementary."
Fox previously caught falsely accusing a school of banning red and green clothing
In 2005, O'Reilly admitted he falsely accused Plano, TX, of banning red and green clothing.
- In 2005, Bill O'Reilly falsely claimed the Plano Independent School District in Texas "told students they couldn't wear red and green because they were Christmas colors," which O'Reilly called "fascism." [The O'Reilly Factor, 12/09/05]
- After the school district refuted the contention that it banned students from wearing red and green, O'Reilly retracted the clam. [The O'Reilly Factor, 12/20/05]