MSNBC Anchor Joy Reid Slams Fox News Over Black Lives Matter Coverage: ‘They Are There to Attack’

“Their audience wants to see these people as villains and Fox portrays them as such,” MSNBC anchor tells TheWrap

MSNBC Anchor Joy Reid is no fan of how Fox News has covered the Black Lives Matter movement, accusing the rival network of vilifying activists and “ginning up” anger against them.

“[Fox News’] purpose is to reframe the news from the perspective of white conservatives. It’s not really a neutral arbiter. It’s there really to do constituent services for white conservative Republicans,” Reid told TheWrap in an interview Wednesday.

“I don’t think they’re interested in the nuances of Black Lives Matter or understanding the movement. They are there to attack it and [activists] are easy people to portray as villains for their audience,” she continued. “Their audience wants to see these people as villains and Fox portrays them as such.”

Reid, who hosts the popular MSNBC weekend show “AM Joy,” recalled how Fox News crews covered riots in Baltimore following the 2015 death of Freddie Gray, a 25-year-old African American who died in police custody.

“They were in Baltimore,” she said. “They weren’t there to get the story, they were there to gin up anger against young people.”

In a statement to TheWrap, a Fox News spokesperson condemned the remarks: “Joy Reid knows nothing about FOX News or our audience; her attacks are baseless and hateful.”

Reid made the attack while promoting the new NBC original documentary “Hope & Fury: MLK, The Movement and The Media.” She appears as an interview subject several times in the two-hour film, which depicts how civil rights leaders, past and present, leveraged the power of the media to advance their goals.

The documentary includes footage of Fox News’ coverage of the 2014 riots in Ferguson, Missouri, following the fatal shooting of an Michael Brown by a white police officer — and notes that it differed sharply in tone from that of other mainstream media outlets.

Reid has been a frequent critic of Fox News in the past. The anchor set off a storm in conservative media months ago when she suggested that nobody “that doesn’t watch Fox News” cared about the MS-13 gang, a violent L.A.-based criminal organization made up mostly of people of Central American origin.

MSNBC declined to comment for this story.

“Hope & Fury: MLK, The Movement and The Media,” will air Saturday at 8 p.m. ET.