Fox Affiliate Calls Neo-Nazis 'Civil Rights Group'
National Socialist Movement not described as hate group by Orlando station
By Evann Gastaldo,  Newser Staff
Posted Apr 9, 2012 12:01 PM CDT

(Newser) – When the National Socialist Movement started patrolling the streets of Sanford, Florida, in response to the uproar over Trayvon Martin's death, many media outlets mentioned the fact that the NSM is made up of neo-Nazis. But not Fox News' Orlando affiliate, which described the organization as a "civil rights group," Think Progress reports. Little Green Footballs was the first to make note, pointing to an article on MyFoxOrlando with the headline, "Civil rights group patrolling Sanford," as well as to a news broadcast in which a reporter says, "There's another civil rights group in town" when referring to the NSM (which uses a swastika in its logo).

The MyFoxOrlando article was later removed, but Little Green Footballs has a screenshot. It was reportedly first replaced by an article with the headline, "White rights group patrolling Sanford," which was also taken down (see a screenshot of that headline here) before finally being replaced with the current headline, "Neo-Nazi group patrolling Sanford." Also troubling is the nature of the video broadcast, which ThinkProgress calls "shockingly uncritical" of the group. The reporter did not question any of leader Jeff Schoep's claims (including, Little Green Footballs notes, his claim that the NSM is not a hate group) nor did she mention the organization's Nazi ties.