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Why Is Glenn Beck Obsessively Targeting Progressive Visionary Frances Fox Piven?

Piven explains bizarre attacks Fox News' Beck has leveled at her for over a year.

For more than a year, Fox News host Glenn Beck has been increasingly targeting Frances Fox Piven, a 78-year-old distinguished professor of political science and sociology at the Graduate Center, City University of New York. Beck has repeatedly accused her of advocating violence and of hatching a plan in 1966 to overthrow the system. Piven joined DemocracyNow! for an interview.

JUAN GONZALEZ: Activists protested outside the offices of News Corporation Thursday calling for Rupert Murdoch to remove Glenn Beck from the airwaves of Fox News. The organization Jewish Funds for Justice accused Beck of, quote, "unchecked hate mongering and public incitement." Activists attempted to deliver a petition signed by 10,000 people calling for Beck’s show to be canceled. Simon Greer is the head of Jewish Funds for Justice.

SIMON GREER: In light of what happened on Saturday, the number one worst moment from Glenn Beck rose to the top when he said, "God will wash this nation with blood if He has to." And once again, I’m not saying that Glenn Beck pulled the trigger on Saturday, but if you present this kind of rhetoric and you warn us that "God will wash this nation in blood if He has to," you’re creating a climate in which terrible tragic violence is likely to take place. It is for these 10 reasons and countless others that we have come to News Corp. headquarters today to deliver a petition signed by 10,000 members of our community and a pink slip calling for Mr. Beck’s termination and asking Joel Cheatwood, Roger Ailes and Rupert Murdoch to be good to their word.

JUAN GONZALEZ: While cable TV shows like Glenn Beck’s are coming under increasing scrutiny in the wake of the Arizona shooting, Glenn Beck is pushing back against critics by increasingly targeting a 78-year-old professor named Frances Fox Piven. Beck has repeatedly accused her of advocating violence and of hatching a plan in 1966 to overthrow the system.

Here is what Beck said on his radio show days after the shooting in Arizona.

GLENN BECK: Are there and is there anybody calling for violence? Yes. Who are they? Well, show me the evidence that it’s Rush Limbaugh. Show me the evidence that it is Sarah Palin. You go ahead and stack up that evidence that doesn’t exist, and I will stack up the evidence against Frances Fox Piven.

JUAN GONZALEZ: Earlier this week, Glenn Beck called on congressional lawmakers to sign a pledge in which he denounces violence from all quarters but, in doing so, compares Piven to well-armed right-wing militia whose members stand accused of plotting the violent overthrow of the U.S. government.

GLENN BECK: I denounce violence, regardless of ideological motivation. Have I lost you yet? Do you need your attorney? I denounce anyone from the left, the right or the middle who believes physical violence is the answer to whatever they feel is wrong with our country. I know it’s getting dicey. Next, I denounce those who wish to tear down our system and rebuild it in their own image, whatever image that may be. Oh, it’s so controversial! I denounce those from the left, the right or the middle who call for riots and violence as an opportunity to bring down and reconstruct our system. That’s a trick there, because that sounds almost like the last one. You sensing the trap yet? Yeah, me neither. I denounce violent threats and calls for the destruction of our system, regardless of their underlying ideology, whether they come from the Hutaree militia or Frances Fox Piven.

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