This week, Paradis and Dr. Swain spoke in a one-on-one interview in Part 2.
Here is the transcript of that interview:
CP: How did you make the choice to pursue academia when making the choice regarding your career path?
CS: Well, I anticipated that I would become a University professor or choose academia for a career. When I did get into college, and the job market. I was only interested in being prepared to get a well paying job and at that time I had set my ambitions on becoming a store manager at a boutique in the mall. I just assumed that I would manage a store at a mall. Growing up as a child. I can tell you that of the 12 children, my mother would say that I was the most serious. I can remember always having this unresolved tension from a feeling that there was something I was supposed to do. I never felt I fit in with my family. I was very, very shy—so shy that I would literally forget how to speak. I could be wanting, needing, something, you know, asking for a piece of bread or something and I would just be frozen. Do you know that expression ‘cat got your tongue’.. I was like a live version of cat got your tongue because if there were times when I just couldn’t formulate words, but my mother said that, I was kind of skittish—that I used to hide behind in fear of people. I don’t know why but I felt as if I had been dropped out of space. Becoming a University professor and the person I am today, that’s not something that I sat down one day and said, ‘oh, I want to become a professor, I’m going to have this media platform.’ That was the furthest thing from my mind.’
CS: I was a work study student with 10 hours, but the regular employees would not show up and they would have a crisis, and I would work nights, or weekends or whenever they had a crisis. So, the director of the library created a full-time job for me nights and weekends 40 hours a week, and I hit that job while I was getting my Bachelor’s Degree. I went to school during the day and I went to the library at night to work circulation. It was a job where there were not a lot of people using the library, I was in the library, I could bring my children there and was surrounded by all those books. That’s when I first realized that I could write a book. I looked at all those books and I realized that if those people could write a book, then I could write a book, too.
CP: And not just one book, but many successful books. You also went on to be a guest analyst or panelist for network television news, networks on both sides of the political spectrum. How did that come to fruition?
CS: I spent my life being very very shy, having the Christian conversion experience in 1999. And I felt that God removed my fear of public speaking and He impressed on my mind He’d given me a message bigger than me and that I should focus on pleasing Him in the message which enabled me to speak. So then that’s when I started doing media, and here I am today. But it started back then, God just totally lifted the fear off me.
CP: Wow. What an incredible Journey and powerful story to be able to share, and inspire and empower others.
CS: God has empowered me in ways that I never imagined and he’s taken away my fear, not only public speaking, but my fear of death. That’s why I can be bold, is because I believe God has called me to speak truth. And that’s where but the consequences to myself. That’s why I can do what I do and I think ‘how did I end up at Princeton?’ or ‘how did these things happen?’ God put certain people in my path. All kinds of people. But, at the end of the day, I feel like God elevated me to the position, and gave me the platform. And I was not even called into the Kingdom to be saved and to be a follower of Jesus Christ, until after I had been tenured at Princeton, after I had won National prizes and after I had made a splash. Then He put into motion circumstances that led to my conversion. So, the people that want to discount me or call me all sorts of names, it’s a little bit more difficult because I had their Good Housekeeping Seal of Approval, and they say ‘Oh, she used to be a great scholar’ but she lost her mind, I say that because they’re the ones that gave me the awards and the prizes in general.
CP: When did that transition from Democrat to becoming more conservative and ultimately Republican begin?
CS: When I became a Christian, I gradually became more conservative, because I was a Democrat when I had my conversion experience. But, as I grew in my faith, I became more and more conservative. As I became more conservative and I started speaking out, that’s when the political left came against me. So, I would not have been tenured, won prizes, or be who I am if I had been a Christian, publically, I believe, back during the time when I was working very hard, you know to make my mark.
CP: So it’s safe to say you’ve always valued hard work?
CS: I’ve always believed, you know, in America. I’ve always been proud to be an American and I always believed that you worked hard enough that you could overcome the circumstances of your birth, and I’ve never viewed myself as handicapped because black or female, or born in poverty; never have viewed those as handicaps. I think, had I seen myself as handicapped, maybe I would not have worked as hard.
CP: You certainly have led an incredible life. As far as your role now, what message is most important to share with other Americans and how do you go about delivering that message?
CS: I believe in what I’m doing in this mission, and I believe that the American people need to awaken. And that they need to realize that our Constitution is all we have and then we stray so far from it, American will not exist. And so, those are the things that really motivate me and propel me forward. I try not to attack people. But, I try not to be ugly.
CP: I know that you’re using your voice, more than ever, with your podcast and recently, how well-received the Prager U piece and interview on Candace Owens’ show were. There have been so many positive reactions and it seemed so genuinely enjoyable for both yourself Candace.
CS: That was the first time I had anything more than an extended conversation with her. The one released on January 11, ‘Let Me Teach You About Racism’ that one got 2.3 million views very quickly, within seven days, but it got stuck at 2.3 million, the last time I looked.
That video, with Candace has million views and if you total up all my Prager work, which includes my individual videos and interviews on Prager U and shows like Candace’s, close to about 70 million people have seen me at some point. I’m speaking about issues that a number of people think are important.
CP: And you are doing the podcast now, are you enjoyIng it?
CS: I do enjoy it. And the interview is a different time of years. I mean, I’m interviewing more young people. I’m going to be interviewing an actress, Samarie Armstrong, who was under fire a few months ago. She got in trouble because she stood up for America. But, I believe I’m making a difference through my podcast, and with my show conversation. And if I was on a network, I would be concerned about getting canceled, because I had offended someone. And so, I’m building my own brand, slowly. I’m in control of it. But of course, like Twitter, particularly, Facebook could take me off, YouTube could take me out. I’m on the other platforms. I’m very much aware that we live in a time where when you speak in truth, you’re going to offend people and there’s a cost to pay. But I’ve never been tempted to get off YouTube, Facebook or Twitter because they might take me off. I don’t want to just speak to people who agree with me. I think it’s more important to reach a broader audience and it’s okay if trolls follow me, and as long as they’re not attacking me, I will respond to them when I can. I just want the dialogue.
CP: Absolutely. The ability to have the conversations that people may disagree with but tactfully without attacking those who may have a differing opinion from yours. I did want to ask about the impact that Lou Dobbs and Don Imus, either deliberately or unknowingly, had on your professional journey with the media. One of the more pivotal moments having to do with Imus. Being that it was such a significant time in your career, I wanted to ask about your experience with his program and eventually, becoming a returning panelist on network news..
CS: I had met Lou Dobbs at Vanderbilt, maybe two or three weeks before the Imus story broke, about his comment about the women’s basketball team. At the time, I had a new book, this was 2007, it was on immigration. So, I was hoping that I would be Lou Dobbs’ show about to speak about my book, but when I got the phone call from his bookers, they said, ‘Mr. Dobbs wanted us to call you about the Don Imus story. And at the time, I had almost no television experience, when they asked me about the story, and what I said, it really went viral. I said that as a black woman, I was more offended by the rappers degrading women all the time, and actually felt like because they were doing it, that Imus felt like he could do the same thing. But, I believe I was the first person to draw parallels to the rappers and how they continually degraded women. After that, Lou Dobbs, himself, called me and he told me that he wanted me to be a regular and that he was going to give me a megaphone for my voice. And I eventually became a paid contributor to CNN Lou Dobbs. That lasted for a couple of years. I was totally inexperienced, but what I did say resonated with the public, and it got picked up and, and at that time, I drew attention to the culture of rappers how they degraded black women.
CS: I was totally inexperienced at the time and I think that, you know, TV will stand by and want you to go fast, fast, fast. But more recently, I’ve been on some shows where you have more time to develop more challenging ideas. But, I don’t just want to spout off, I really want to think about what I’m saying and what it means. But, I also believe, if I have this platform, there are things that need to be spoken. What I say resonates with people, because some of them may have had the same thoughts, but they didn’t know how to express it. And so when I say it, then that’s like, it’s an aha moment for a lot of people and it crystallizes what other people feel and what they’re thinking. A lot of times, it’s not the deep gray and things I’m saying it’s more of, I can look at something that everyone’s been looking at, and I can call it out for what it is, and then they recognize that I’m right and that resonates with them.
CP: I mean, that sounds like it’s your gift?
CS: I do believe I have a prophetic gifting. I’m able to see things before other people. So I recognize that about myself. But I know that God gave me this platform, and then I’m answering the call to speak and not worrying about the consequences, because if I’m worried about the consequences. So, I have to trust the process. I have had a few opportunities. I believe that if there’s something I’m supposed to speak on, the opportunities will come.
CP: Well, that groundedness has to provide a lot of comfort, because that is not exactly the norm in this industry. It is what makes you so stand out so much and sparkle because you do genuinely think about everything. Words have repercussions and consequences and there are messages that you don’t want that attached to your name. I think a lot of people fail to be deliberate with their words or comprehend the magnitude of what they do say.
CS: I think when a person like me has a platform, they have a responsibility to think about the implications of what they want to do and say, and this weighs on me with the media. There are some books I need to write and I want to have a more lasting impact. For me, I’m always thinking ‘okay, how can I balance what I’m doing?’ I’m currently doing my podcast, my internet TV show and I do think about radio. But, when it comes to meeting with people, and the media interviews and all these things like that, I need to carve out time that I can write, I can rest, I can exercise. I feel like my life is not always as balanced as it could be and should be. So, I’m approaching the season where I want to be able to spend more time writing, thinking and maybe relaxing.
CP: Well you’ve definitely been busy and I appreciate you giving me so much of your valuable time. I’m just going to wrap it up with a little bit of word association. So, just share the first word that comes to mind when you hear said person’s name. I can’t imagine anybody better for us to kick it off with than Candace Owens.
CP: Rush Limbaugh?
CP: Don Imus?
CP: Steve Bannon?
CP: Mike Huckabee?
CP: President Trump?
CP: Lou Dobbs?
CP: Laura Ingram?
CP: And for yourself, what would you like people to associate Dr. Carol Swain with?
CS: I think mature, speaker, transparency. I tend to be very transparent. When people say, ‘oh, you should never do this’ or ‘you should never let people know what you’re thinking..’ I believe in transparency. I want to be authentic. I want to be real. I want to be transparent. My decision to wear my hair naturally, after many years of straightening my hair and wearing wigs and weaves. I feel like to be authentic, you have to be who you are—that includes how you look.
I’m just trying to reach people using as many platforms as possible. And people can follow me as a supporter on Facebook, and Twitter and now TikTok.
CP: I will be sure to include all of the ways to follow your work at the conclusion of the interview. Are there any other projects you’ve been working on?
CS: Everything is on the website BeThePeopleNews.com. Recently, my show Conversations with Dr. Carol Swain, which is that intimate, huge Internet TV show kind of setting, has been made available as a podcast, so people that want to listen, can through any one of the platforms.
I have so many new things going on. But it’s all about communicating and getting it out. Using my voices and doing the things I believe God has called me to do. I do know that along the way, I may be shut down, but I will just keep going until it happens.
CP: Well, I love your attitude. It’s so infectious. It makes me feel like I can, you know, go out and change the world after my conversation with Dr. Carol Swain.
CS: I mean, that’s what I want to do. I love that this is happening. People have approached me about running for office. I say that I’ve had the conversation but I think about if through my various platforms, which includes my YouTube videos, you can reach young people and excite them and they can go out and change the world. I can have a great impact moment motivating people and equipping them, and maybe then, I can become a member of Congress. But if you think about my life and the impact it’s going to have, I think I can reach more people this way.
CP: Absolutely, kind of like Carol Swain’s Master Class. Thank you so very much for your time.
Follow Carol Swain on Twitter at @CarolMSwain , on Facebook, YouTube with Prager U and Dr. Carol M. Swain : Be The People News, her podcasts Be The People and Conversations with Dr. Carol Swain all of which can be located on the website BeThePeopleNews.com. And make sure to check out her brand new Tik Tok account too!
Bring Back the Art of Debate
In small doses and in the proper situation, it’s well worth your time to have your own ideas, along with the audience’s, challenged.
The last few weeks I’ve thought a lot about a quote I recently heard from Bill O’Reilly. I believe it was in a recent interview he appeared in with Glenn Beck, and O’Reilly was discussing his years as host of “The O’Reilly Factor”, the most-watched cable news show in the history of the medium. He was discussing how he went about booking his guests and said, and I paraphrase, “I tried to book the smartest people who could challenge me.”
That’s one of the reasons that O’Reilly’s show was so successful. He did that on a nightly basis for over 20 years.
Unfortunately, that premise has gone by the wayside, in favor of echo chambers across the media landscape, including talk radio.
But that doesn’t mean it can’t come back in some capacity and it doesn’t mean the host has to compromise their values.
Each week on my morning show on KCMO Talk Radio, I interview Kansas City Mayor Quinton Lucas. Lucas is a Democrat, who has certainly angered lots of conservatives over the last 18 months on issues of COVID lockdowns, masks, and policing policy, just to name a few. One can debate how far left Lucas is on the “liberal spectrum”, but he will be the first to tell you he is a proud Democrat.
Shortly after the pandemic began, I spoke with his office about doing a weekly hit to update the city on what was happening on the COVID front. The interview has continued ever since, every Thursday morning at 7:30, but has touched on any and every topic relevant to Kansas City.
And while every listener, plus Lucas himself, knows I have disagreed with much of his policies over the last 18 months, our conversations are challenging, but cordial, respectful, and informative for the audience.
However, like clockwork, after each weekly conversation, there will be a barrage of calls, texts, social media messages, and e-mails saying that I, as the host, “let him off the hook”, “am too soft”, and all the usual criticisms that come from a portion of the audience. These individuals insist they are done listening to our weekly conversations.
But you know what, something funny happens when I look at the KCMO Talk Radio streaming numbers each day or look at the ratings at the end of the month: Thursdays at 7:30 end up being one of our most-listened-to and highest-rated segments, by far.
Then, when I go out in the real world, people tell me how much they appreciate the weekly conversations with the mayor, despite how much they may disagree with him. They think it’s important that our audience gets to hear from him, even if we aren’t his “based” constituency.
To Lucas’ credit, he comes on my show, despite our differences. That’s a lost art for most politicians, left and right, who only want to go on media that is sympathetic to them and their beliefs.
And then on the flip side, hosts on TV and radio have gone too far into the echo chamber, where they don’t want to hear from those who disagree with them. They also believe that the small portion of the audience that “wants blood” (theoretically speaking, of course) from their opponents, are the majority of the audience.
My research shows that’s not the case. And to reiterate, none of this requires a host to compromise their beliefs or become “squishy” on their opinions.
Granted, I wouldn’t spend hour after hour with guests who are disagreeable or don’t align with the audience, but the right guest in the right spot has real potential to create an excellent conversation and really good radio.
There’s no doubt it’s harder than ever to book these guests, based on the aforementioned reasons, but in small doses and in the proper situation, it’s well worth your time to have your own ideas, along with the audience’s, challenged.
And while hearts and minds are unlikely to change given the divisive climate we find ourselves in, you created a moment that connected with the listener, either good or bad, that will be memorable to them and keep them coming back for more. The loud-mouth haters be damned.
FOX News Remains Go To Network For Noteworthy Events
“Fox News’ special “A Gabby Petito Investigation with Nancy Grace” drew 1.78 million.”
Several noteworthy news events occurred during the week ending September 19, most of which Fox News Channel was the leading cable news outlet in its coverage viewership.
On Sep. 13, Secretary of State Antony Blinken was the first Biden administration official to testify publicly to lawmakers since the Islamist militant group, the Taliban, took over Afghanistan. His appearance before the House of Representatives Foreign Affairs Committee was tabulated only for MSNBC by Nielsen Media Research, to a delivery of 542,000 total viewers (from 2:16-4:00 p.m. ET). On the following day (Sep. 14), Blinken’s testimony before the Senate Foreign Relations Committee aired on both Fox News and MSNBC. Fox News was the clear victor, more than doubling MSNBC in total viewers (1.576 million vs. 0.648 million) and nearly quadrupled in the key 25-54 demo (257,000 vs. 66,000).
The California gubernatorial recall election on Sep. 14 that resulted in Gavin Newsom remaining as governor was extensively covered for four hours on CNN:
10-11 p.m. ET: 1.049 million total viewers; 309,000 adults 25-54
11 p.m.-midnight ET: 1.013 million total viewers; 344,000 adults 25-54
midnight-1 a.m. ET: 0.846 million total viewers; 283,000 adults 25-54
1-2 a.m. ET: 0.575 million total viewers; 185,000 adults 25-54
Fox News covered the election results only in the 11 p.m.-midnight hour, averaging 2.05 million total viewers and 411,000 adults 25-54 — no doubt, assisted by its highly-watched prime time lead-in.
MSNBC spent only 26 minutes of live coverage in late night, resulting in 659,000 total viewers and 93,000 adults 25-54 (from 1-1:26 a.m. ET).
MSNBC was the lone cable news outlet to air testimony by American female gymnasts before the U.S. Senate Judiciary Committee on the morning of Sep. 15. Gold medalist athletes Simone Biles, McKayla Maroney, and Aly Raisman relayed to lawmakers how the FBI and U.S. gymnastic and Olympic officials failed to stop the sexual abuse that they, along with hundreds of other athletes,suffered from former doctor Larry Nassar. From 10:43 a.m. to 12:06 p.m. ET, MSNBC averaged 753,000 viewers and 62,000 in the key 25-54 demo; the gymnasts’ press conference from 2:10-2:30 p.m. (also on MSNBC) drew 813,000 viewers and 95,000 adults 25-54.
On Sep. 18, Fox News covered SpaceX’s return of its Crew Dragon spacecraft from orbit, with the capsule carrying the four members of the Inspiration4 mission back to Earth after three days in space. It was the furthest humans had traveled above the surface in several years. The capsule Resilience splashed down off the coast of Cape Canaveral, Florida in the Atlantic Ocean. From 7-8 p.m. ET, Fox News posted 1.155 million total viewers and 141,000 adults 25-54. SpaceX is owned by Elon Musk.
Lastly, on Sep. 19 at 10 p.m. ET, Fox News’ special “A Gabby Petito Investigation with Nancy Grace” delivered the highest-rated cable news show in the 25-54 demo of the entire weekend with 317,000 viewers. In total viewers, the live special drew 1.78 million.
Here are the cable news averages for September 13-19, 2021.
Total Day (September 13-19 @ 6 a.m.-5:59 a.m.)
- Fox News Channel: 1.483 million viewers; 238,000 adults 25-54
- MSNBC: 0.767 million viewers; 86,000 adults 25-54
- CNN: 0.587 million viewers; 125,000 adults 25-54
- HLN: 0.194 million viewers; 60,000 adults 25-54
- CNBC: 0.140 million viewers; 34,000 adults 25-54
- The Weather Channel: 0.137 million viewers; 27,000 adults 25-54
- Newsmax: 0.135 million viewers; 18,000 adults 25-54
- Fox Business Network: 0.084 million viewers; 11,000 adults 25-54
Prime Time (September 13-18 @ 8-11 p.m.; September 19 @ 7-11 p.m.)
- Fox News Channel: 2.659 million viewers; 417,000 adults 25-54
- MSNBC: 1.375 million viewers; 156,000 adults 25-54
- CNN: 0.799 million viewers; 177,000 adults 25-54
- HLN: 0.206 million viewers; 63,000 adults 25-54
- CNBC: 0.203 million viewers; 65,000 adults 25-54
- Newsmax: 0.163 million viewers; 25,000 adults 25-54
- The Weather Channel: 0.151 million viewers; 29,000 adults 25-54
- Fox Business Network: 0.046 million viewers; 6,000 adults 25-54
Top 10 most-watched cable news programs (and the top MSNBC and CNN programs with their respective associated ranks) in total viewers:
1. Tucker Carlson Tonight (FOXNC, Tue. 9/14/2021 8:00 PM, 60 min.) 3.776 million viewers
2. Tucker Carlson Tonight (FOXNC, Wed. 9/15/2021 8:00 PM, 60 min.) 3.574 million viewers
3. Hannity (FOXNC, Tue. 9/14/2021 9:00 PM, 60 min.) 3.528 million viewers
4. Tucker Carlson Tonight (FOXNC, Mon. 9/13/2021 8:00 PM, 60 min.) 3.343 million viewers
5. The Five (FOXNC, Tue. 9/14/2021 5:00 PM, 60 min.) 3.294 million viewers
6. Tucker Carlson Tonight (FOXNC, Thu. 9/16/2021 8:00 PM, 60 min.) 3.274 million viewers
7. Hannity (FOXNC, Wed. 9/15/2021 9:00 PM, 60 min.) 3.202 million viewers
8. Hannity (FOXNC, Thu. 9/16/2021 9:00 PM, 60 min.) 3.171 million viewers
9. Tucker Carlson Tonight (FOXNC, Fri. 9/17/2021 8:00 PM, 60 min.) 3.151 million viewers
10. The Five (FOXNC, Mon. 9/13/2021 5:00 PM, 60 min.) 3.121 million viewers
17. Rachel Maddow Show (MSNBC, Tue. 9/14/2021 9:00 PM, 60 min.) 2.611 million viewers
127. Anderson Cooper 360 (CNN, Wed. 9/15/2021 8:00 PM, 60 min.) 1.209 million viewers
Top 10 cable news programs (and the top CNN and MSNBC programs with their respective associated ranks) among adults 25-54:
1. Tucker Carlson Tonight (FOXNC, Tue. 9/14/2021 8:00 PM, 60 min.) 0.629 million adults 25-54
2. Tucker Carlson Tonight (FOXNC, Wed. 9/15/2021 8:00 PM, 60 min.) 0.621 million adults 25-54
3. Hannity (FOXNC, Wed. 9/15/2021 9:00 PM, 60 min.) 0.568 million adults 25-54
4. Tucker Carlson Tonight (FOXNC, Thu. 9/16/2021 8:00 PM, 60 min.) 0.544 million adults 25-54
5. Tucker Carlson Tonight (FOXNC, Mon. 9/13/2021 8:00 PM, 60 min.) 0.542 million adults 25-54
6. Hannity (FOXNC, Tue. 9/14/2021 9:00 PM, 60 min.) 0.538 million adults 25-54
7. Hannity (FOXNC, Thu. 9/16/2021 9:00 PM, 60 min.) 0.514 million adults 25-54
8. Tucker Carlson Tonight (FOXNC, Fri. 9/17/2021 8:00 PM, 60 min.) 0.510 million adults 25-54
9. The Five (FOXNC, Tue. 9/14/2021 5:00 PM, 60 min.) 0.491 million adults 25-54
10. The Five (FOXNC, Wed. 9/15/2021 5:00 PM, 60 min.) 0.479 million adults 25-54
29. CNN Special Coverage “California Governor Recall Election” (CNN, Tue. 9/14/2021 11:00 PM, 60 min.) 0.344 million adults 25-54
36. Rachel Maddow Show (MSNBC, Tue. 9/14/2021 9:00 PM, 60 min.) 0.315 million adults 25-54
Source: Live+Same Day data, Nielsen Media Research
Pivoting to News/Talk Was A Natural Move For Steve Malzberg
“Censorship from management is something that you just need to put up with. If you don’t like it, you can leave.”
RT America host Steve Malzberg’s accomplished career began in sports but deep down he always had a passion for politics. Even before right-wing commentators were accusing the woke sports media of pandering to a specific base, Malzberg saw the hypocrisy in some of the day-to-day coverage.
The liberal bent fueled Malzberg’s creativity and desire to be different. Topics like race in sports often gave him fodder for his nightly shows in New York City. Years of railing against liberal opponents eventually made switching to news/talk full-time, seamless.
Malzberg’s unique skill set has translated well in both radio and television. Following a lengthy run at iconic WABC Radio, he was hired at WOR Radio and was eventually replaced by New York’s former governor David Patterson.
In 2013, he was hired by Newsmax TV to host the Steve Malzberg Show. Last year, he inked a deal with RT America to host a media commentary show. Now, very content and with plenty of creative freedom, Malzberg offers his expertise on media bias to millions of people. Malzberg recently sat down with Barrett News Media to discuss his path to success, his job at RT America, and how the death of Rush Limbaugh rocked conservative media to its core.
Ryan Hedrick: How did your career start?
Steve Malzberg: I started in sportsfor the first ten years or so of my career. I hosted the New York Yankees pre and post-game shows for a year, Jets pre and post-game shows for four years, Devils pre and post-game shows for a year. I had the honor of going to Super Bowls, Stanley Cups Finals and everything else you could imagine.
RH: Was the news/talk format one you envisioned moving into?
SM: I always had politics in me. My career took a different turn the night OJ Simpson was driving around in a Bronco. That event led to me switching. I was supposed to cover the Knicks who were playing the Houston Rockets at Madison Square Garden in the NBA Finals.
My program director asked me to stay around, come on after the game and cover the OJ story. He invited me to come on the very next day and provide live coverage of the OJ saga and after that I started filling in for other hosts doing political talk and more in the realm of current news events.
RH: One of the biggest challenges for transitioning from sports talk to news/talk is finding your voice. Did that come naturally to you?
SM: Yes. I used to love covering Jesse Jackson when I was doing sports. He would protest that athletics needed more Black coaches. I remember Filip Bondy and Harvey Araton wrote a book on the NBA. One of the themes was how hard and how terrible it must be to be a Black NBA player and deal with white public relations people, that irked me.
RH: You were the first-ever host of Newsmax TV. Are you still a viewer of the network? If so, what are your thoughts on how it’s developed?
SM: I am not going to say anything bad about my former place of employment. Chris Ruddy who runs Newsmax TV was always very hands-on. I am sure he’s just as hands-on now. I know after I left, they brought in a lot of people with hard news experience. I think they have a great mix of talent there, but I can’t say that I watch so I don’t have much to say about the programming.
RH: You’re currently hosting for RT America. What role do you believe you and your network are playing in educating conservative news media moderates push back against cancel culture?
SM: On RT America I host Eat the Press which is kind of a play on Meet the Press, but it’s not aimed at the show by any stretch of the imagination. What we do is really devour the press and their bias. I have the freedom to present examples of media bias every week and I think I do my part of trying to hold the media accountable.
I also have wonderful A-list guests who continue to come on with me. Great conservative Hollywood people join the show such as Robert Davi, Kevin Sorbo, and Maria Conchita Alonso. They buck the trend in Hollywood.
Conservative media is doing a great job getting the word out there. Shows like Fox & Friends are blowing away CNN and MSNBC in the ratings. However, the media is still dominated by the left, and with the advent of social media and the ability and willingness of Big Tech to cooperate with the government and in some instances ban conservatives, we have an uphill fight!
RH: What role do you feel social media plays in helping conservatives get their truth out?
SM: Social media is where it’s at. If we are limited then we are losing. We can’t put doubts about the vaccine or questions about a third shot or any topic without the liberals at Facebook and Google monitoring us and taking us down.
RH: As a host with strong opinions, are you ever concerned about being censored or canceled?
SM: Censorship has existed in one form or another in broadcasting throughout my career. I could go back to any of the stations or networks I have ever worked at and tell you that I’ve been told what not to say, not so much what to say.
Censorship from management is something that you just need to put up with. If you don’t like it, you can leave. I always found that my censorship was carried out in my passion or support of Israel. At RT America, we have a meeting. I come up with the guests and ideas and book the guests and there’s only been one disagreement with a guest. I have never been told what to say or how to say something.
RH: What type of impact do you feel the death of Rush Limbaugh has had on conservative media as a whole?
SM: I was fortunate enough to know Rush and be there when he arrived at WABC in 1988. I knew Rush for many, many years. Limbaugh is irreplaceable. His death set conservative media back. No offense to the people that have taken over for Rush, but I don’t listen. It’s not the same and it’s not appointment radio. I just don’t see how you fill the loss.