Fox News edit of Biden comment removes racial context

NEW YORK (AP) – Fox News Channel edited video of President Joe Biden on Friday to remove context from remarks that some could judge as racially insensitive.

In Veterans Day comments made Thursday, Biden told an anecdote that referenced baseball player Satchel Paige, who had pitched in the Negro Leagues before Jackie Robinson broke the color barrier in Major League Baseball.

On “Fox & Friends,” Rachel Campos Duffy said Biden was “facing backlash” for comments at Arlington National Cemetery.

In his comments, Biden said he had “adopted the attitude of the great Negro, at the time pitcher in the Negro Leagues, went on to become a great pitcher in the pros in Major League baseball after Jackie Robinson, his name was Satchel Paige.”

But when Duffy played the clip, it was edited so Biden was heard saying he had “adopted the attitude of the great Negro at the time, pitcher, name was Satchel Paige.”

Duffy said Biden’s remarks were “landing him in hot water.” While “Negro” was once a common way to refer to Black people and still appears in organization names, the terms “Black” and “African American” are more widely used today.

When editing video, journalists have an obligation to keep statements in the context they were delivered or explain to viewers why a change was made, said Al Tompkins, faculty member at Poynter Institute, a journalism think tank. In this case, the edit is not at all clear, he said.

A Fox spokesperson noted that the full remark was used when the story was repeated two other times on “Fox & Friends,” and said the one-time edit was made because of time constraints.

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