In an interview with Pete Dominick on sattelite radio yesterday, CNN’s Rick Sanchez accused Jon Stewart of bigotry for routinely poking fun at him on The Daily Show. Mr. Sanchez also suggested that CNN is run by Jews and that, because of his background, Mr. Stewart has never faced the same prejudices as Mr. Sanchez, who is Cuban-American.
Update 6:12 p.m.: Mr. Sanchez was fired from CNN this afternoon.
Here are two excerpts of the Mr. Sanchez’s comments on the air:
I grew up not speaking English, dealing with real prejudice every day as a kid; watching my dad work in a factory, wash dishes, drive a truck, get spit on. I’ve been told that I can’t do certain things in life simply because I was a Hispanic. My friends who are black, I’ve seen that with them; I’ve seen that with a lot of minorities. I can’t really think — although I understand the plight of Jews, and all the experiences, and the things that have happened historically for them — but I can’t say that my buddy Glen or my buddy Izzy who I grew up with in South Florida ever were prejudiced against directly simply because they were Jewish. There may have been jokes around them or about other things, but it’s kinda — you know what I’m saying, it’s kind of a different thing.
Later: I’m telling you that everybody who runs CNN is a lot like Stewart, and a lot of people who run all the other networks are a lot like Stewart, and to imply that somehow they – the people in this country who are Jewish – are an oppressed minority? Yeah. [sarcastically]
The Daily Beast points out that the Anti-Defamation League’s offices are closed for the Jewish holiday Sukkot, and Mr. Stewart won’t have a chance to respond until Monday. If Mr. Sanchez’s remarks are ill-advised, at least they were well-timed.
Highlights of the interview from The Daily Beast:
(h/t Steve Krakauer)