Bernie deep-sixes Cenk Uygur

Well, I couldn’t resist some politics. I recently wondered, “How is Young Turks host Cenk Uygur faring in his campaign for a Congressional seat?” You may know that Uygur is running for the House seat vacated by Democrat Katie Hill after she was involved in a bit of a scandal.

So I looked him up and found this article from a month ago, detailing how The Bern withdrew his endorsement of Uygur after Cenk’s ugly history on social media was revealed. (This was no one-off tweet or Facebook post, but an entire history of odious behavior.)

Given his history of temper tantrums, sexist comments, denial of the Armenian genocide (I believe he finally accepted it, reluctantly), and bigotry against Jews, blacks, gays—you name it—I agree with Sanders.

The chairman of the Los Angeles County Democratic Party characterized Uygur this way:

“This man has spent decades, including up until recently, attacking women, the LGBTQ community, Jews, Muslims, Asian-Americans and African Americans,” he said in a statement. “His vulgarity, his hate speech and divisive rhetoric have no place in our party.”

Nor does he have the temperament for a leader. When I saw the video of him berating airline gate agents when his flight was delayed (that video has mysteriously disappeared, although there’s one he made justifying his behavior), I realized this was an entitled, first-class jerk who loved throwing his weight around. He may have progressive sentiments, but he has the mind and demeanor of a frat boy.

Uygur is running against Christy Smith, a California assemblywoman with a very good record of accomplishment in the state legislature.  If you’re voting in the 25th Congressional District of California, vote for Smith. I’m Jerry Coyne, and I endorse this message.

39 Comments

  1. DFMGV
    Posted January 21, 2020 at 2:00 pm | Permalink

    I agree with you, Jerry. When I see his video’s I get a vibe that reminds me of the
    BRUCE BANNISTER–HULK change,
    he can be very rational, but then LOOK OUT.

    If you have the time, look at that three hour video on the internet/youtube of SAM HARRIS TALKING TO UYGER—TO GET AN IDEA OF how he talks to people. With Sam Harris being so cool and collected, its fascinating to watch.

    • Richard Sanderson🤴
      Posted January 21, 2020 at 6:43 pm | Permalink

      That was a few days after the debacle of when Cenk invited his then buddy ** ******** onto his show just to throw shade at Harris. That’s the antisemite and exposed plagiarist, ** ********, lest I remind everybody.

      Cenk can go and do one. He’s a regressive hack.

  2. John Q
    Posted January 21, 2020 at 2:08 pm | Permalink

    Cenk has apologized when it comes to the comments he made years ago. He also recognized that he was wrong about the Armenian Genocide.

    • Posted January 21, 2020 at 2:12 pm | Permalink

      His temper tantrum and bad treatment of airline personnel was just a few years ago. Also, have a look at his Muslim apologetics (and rude behavior) in that Sam Harris interview.

    • Richard Sanderson🤴
      Posted January 21, 2020 at 6:44 pm | Permalink

      Actually, he dug his heels in over the Armenian Genocide, and only issued a “I need to do more research and re-evaluate” plea after people like me and Lalo Dagach got on his back.

      • Jenny Haniver
        Posted January 22, 2020 at 12:27 am | Permalink

        Given Cenk’s position vis-a-vis the Armenian Genocide, the very name, Young Turks, is extremely provocative since historically, the original Young Turks ended up participating in the genocide and committing numerous other crimes against various groups. It seems that Cenk calls the name of his show pure coincidence! What a crock.

        In this light I find it curious that his co-host is Ana Kasparian, an Armenian. However, if what’s reported in this article, https://www.playboy.com/read/the-complicity-of-ana-kasparian-1, is accurate it’s no wonder. It’s easy to dis “intersectionality” and other postmodern terms and concepts but this article puts that concept of intersectionality to good use to dissect Kasparian what she’s up to, IMO.

        • Saul Sorrell-Till
          Posted January 22, 2020 at 8:47 am | Permalink

          That was an interesting article. Kasparian seems to be a prop that Uygur hired to counter the Armenian genocide stuff. She seems almost to acknowledge it. Weird. I guess it’s a kind of mutualism – they both get something out of it.

          She seems less awful than him, but really I try and avoid that swamp altogether.

          • Robert S.
            Posted January 22, 2020 at 6:21 pm | Permalink

            I saw him discuss the Armenian Genocide just a few weeks ago. He fully owned it. He essentially said,”When I was a young Turk I was taught incorrect history. I stuck by it. I was wrong.”

            I’ve heard him apologize for years about his old sexist, racist comments. He was a young conservative trying to make a mark as “un-pc” and provocative. It’s fair to condemn him for it, and even to refuse to support him for it. It’s also possible to forgive him and realize he no longer holds those views.

            The linked NYT article is hilarious. In one glaring instance, it suggested that him interviewing David Duke was an endorsement of Duke’s views. They had to add the “sarcastic” sentences later. Go look at the correction at the bottom of the article. Any reasonable viewing of the Duke interview would have made it obvious that he was aggressively countering Duke. In that light, it’s also obvious that we should view this NYT piece skeptically. Someone was trying to achieve an outcome. It looks by this comment thread that it succeeded.

            In the meantime, he’s built a popular media company that amplifies a left point of view. He’s built WolfPAC and Justice Democrats to get money out of politics. He seems like an egotistical loud mouth fighter who would make coalition with AOC, Ro Khanna, etc.

            Chrissy Smith seems like an establishment Democrat who would make coalition with Pelosi, Manchin, etc. That certainly might be more of some voters’ cup of tea.

  3. Randall Schenck
    Posted January 21, 2020 at 2:13 pm | Permalink

    At this point it might be a plus for this bozo to see Bernie running from him. I think Bernie is toast after the job he got from Hilary Clinton. Nobody survives that flogging. She ripped old Bernie up. If he had been a long time democrat party guy he may have survived this but he is cooked.

    • Posted January 21, 2020 at 2:16 pm | Permalink

      I disagree about Hillary–I think she came out looking vindictive, nasty, and divisive. Her disapprobation may in fact help Bernie, but at any rate it doesn’t help her.

      I’m not Bernie’s biggest fan, but I would defend him against Clinton’s onslaught.

      • Loren T Parfitt
        Posted January 21, 2020 at 2:28 pm | Permalink

        I couldn’t believe that she wouldn’t commit to endorsing him if he is the nominee. She could have just said that she would endorse whomever the nominee ends up being and left it at that. It really feels like revenge for Bernie being slow at endorsing her back in 2016, and seems kind of petty.

        • tomh
          Posted January 22, 2020 at 1:05 am | Permalink

          Clinton declared that she would support any Democratic nominee, even if it’s Sanders.
          CNN link

      • Randall Schenck
        Posted January 21, 2020 at 2:38 pm | Permalink

        Certainly everyone is entitled to their opinion on this. But he is a candidate, not Hilary. He is also what I said before, not really of the Democratic party. Why Hilary went after him, I don’t know but the idea that he comes out better because of this is laughable. Yes, but what do I know. No much but I’m the guy that said long ago that Trump would be impeached with no support here from anyone.

      • W.Benson
        Posted January 21, 2020 at 9:04 pm | Permalink

        Hillary who?

    • Servatius
      Posted January 21, 2020 at 5:38 pm | Permalink

      Hillary looks way worse than Bernier does she should realize her time is done and accept that.

  4. Peter Baird
    Posted January 21, 2020 at 2:25 pm | Permalink

    Here in the 25th we had a difficult time getting rid of Steve Knight, the previous occupant. Knight is a fierce anti-choice conservative who voted with Trump 96% of the time, so we rejoiced when Katie Porter took the seat. (Personally I think she should have toughed it out.) Knight is running again, and Christy Smith is the only viable choice–Uygur is considered something of an oddity and distraction.

    • tg
      Posted January 21, 2020 at 3:55 pm | Permalink

      IIRC, Porter expected foes to ‘leak’ more of the personal photos.

  5. Michael Fisher
    Posted January 21, 2020 at 2:29 pm | Permalink

    CU.. “American Airlines is a super shitty airline!” [22 mins]

  6. Michael Fisher
    Posted January 21, 2020 at 2:33 pm | Permalink

    CU.. “Why You Should NEVER Fly American Airlines” [9 mins]

    There are other videos available CU seems to have live streamed quite a bit at the airport & there’s others he’s edited later – I haven’t watched any vids as he’s too ranty for me.

  7. Posted January 21, 2020 at 2:53 pm | Permalink

    This doesn’t reflect well on Bernie Sanders to give an endorsement without first vetting, especially since social media is so easy to access. I’m guessing a 5-minute Google search session would have prevented this.

    Trump won partly because he had a better electronic campaign, and I am not counting the Russian-backed fake news. It would be nice to think that the Dems learned that painful lesson but not in Bernie’s case at least.

    • Deodand
      Posted January 21, 2020 at 4:32 pm | Permalink

      Who needs to vet anything, Uygur is a PoC (Muslim SuRace), therefore everything that comes out of his mouth is true and need not be checked, after all it is impossible for a PoC (Any SubRace) to be racist by definition. After all just look at what’s happening in China and India…

      If anything it reminds me of a case involving a California university that hired a PoC (Black SubRace)/PoG (Gay SubGender) individual as their ‘diversity officer’, the person hired made a number of statements about PoNC (White SubRace)/PoG (Gay SubGender/Lesbian SubGender) individuals that could not be construed as being anything other than discriminatory, they dumped him pretty quickly.

  8. Jenny Haniver
    Posted January 21, 2020 at 2:53 pm | Permalink

    Now if he’ll just deep-six Linda Sarsour.

    • JezGrove
      Posted January 21, 2020 at 3:09 pm | Permalink

      That would be good, but I’m not holding my breath.

  9. JezGrove
    Posted January 21, 2020 at 2:59 pm | Permalink

    Bernie did the right thing for once. My problems with him are that he only chooses to identify as an actual Dem when it suits him (i.e. presidential election time, for some reason I can’t fathom) and that his belated and half-hearted endorsement of Hillary after she won the nomination encouraged too many of his supporters to sit on their hands while Trump was “elected”.

    • Posted January 21, 2020 at 3:16 pm | Permalink

      I have not heard anywhere that the footdragging from the Bernie Bros would have made any difference in the electoral college election of Trump.

      • JezGrove
        Posted January 21, 2020 at 3:59 pm | Permalink

        My sister (a British-born U.S. citizen) is always ranting about the “Bernie Bros”, so I might have apportioned them too much blame, in which case my sincere apologies. In fact, I almost said “Bernie Bros” myself in my post above but as a Brit was wary of using the phrase without checking its connotations and discovered that it seems to be a bit tainted: https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bernie_Bro

        I’m not sure how true the Wikipedia article’s claim that Hillary’s 2008 campaign used the similar “Obama Boys” slur to dismiss her opponent back then is, but it seems to have at least some support: https://medium.com/@StealYoRedBull/before-bernie-bros-there-were-obama-boys-2327bc941e06

        • JezGrove
          Posted January 21, 2020 at 4:06 pm | Permalink

          Ironically, I’ve just spotted that Cenk Uygar was a critic of the “Bernie Bros” tag. Not sure how many times I can demonstrate my ignorance in a single WEIT thread…

        • Posted January 21, 2020 at 5:25 pm | Permalink

          Hey, no worries.

        • Posted January 22, 2020 at 12:23 pm | Permalink

          The Bernie Bro trope is definitely greatly exaggerated when you look at the diversity of his supporters: https://www.businessinsider.com/bernie-bro-myth-sanders-base-more-diverse-2019-3

          As for Hillary, she’s blamed just about everything under the sun for her loss in 2016 other than her failure to run a smart campaign (while there were obviously numerous factors involved, the losses were so close in PA, MI, and WI that any one of those factors may have tipped it back towards her). Not visiting the rust belt states was a major mistake (and potentially one of the many factors that may just have allowed her to eek out the EC win) that I’d suspect no Democratic contender will make this time around.

  10. Saul Sorrell-Till
    Posted January 21, 2020 at 4:01 pm | Permalink

    He’s an absolutely fucking ghastly creep. ‘Frat boy’ is a perfect description of him – he is as douchey a bag as there has ever been.

    TYT represent everything wrong with the far-left: their warp-speed eagerness to go low, their desire to not just damage but ‘crush’ their opponents, their overwhelming focus on smearing other left liberals(although it’s hard to describe people like Cenk as liberals, since they’d probably reject most of the tenets of liberalism), their self-absorption and complacency when it comes to Trump getting a second term, their willingness to bend the truth to breaking point…CU is just their awful figurehead.

    We have British equivalents: and they’re pretty much identical in their approach and their infuriating complacency. Their refusal to deviate from tinpot dreams of utopian socialism. Their refusal to moderate, compromise or otherwise do any of the things that politics actually involves if you want to get anything done. The dull-witted venom of the social media attacks.

    You have to wonder about their motives.

    • Deodand
      Posted January 21, 2020 at 4:35 pm | Permalink

      And they are Anti-Science to boot, here is one skeptics take on their claims…

      • Posted January 22, 2020 at 12:59 pm | Permalink

        I hadn’t heard of Myles Power before, this guy is great! He has a new subscriber!

  11. Posted January 21, 2020 at 4:29 pm | Permalink

    It is good that Sanders retracted his endorsement of this twerp, but the question remains as to why he endorsed him in the first place.

  12. Adam M.
    Posted January 21, 2020 at 8:36 pm | Permalink

    While I stopped watching TYT myself some years ago after Cenk starting yelling too much (and for other reasons), I do think the quote about him is a total smear. He’s certainly not anti-gay, anti-Muslim, anti-black, anti-Asian, and anti-Jew! If anything, he’s biased towards racial and religious and other minorities in his thinking. And to claim that he’s all chummy with David Duke and thereby imply that he’s some white supremacist as they’re now doing is especially absurd. They portray him as some right-wing Nazi whereas in reality he’s probably too woke and too far left, if anything.

    This kind of smear job is dishonest and disgusting, but all too typical these days.

    • Adam M.
      Posted January 21, 2020 at 8:37 pm | Permalink

      And, lest I be misunderstood, I’m not criticizing your article but the mob that’s attacking him.

  13. Posted January 22, 2020 at 2:59 am | Permalink

    So Cenk Uygur turns out to be a bit of a tool. I’m not surprised – I’ve watched him on TYT and I find it almost unbearable. He clearly loves the sound of his own voice and will interrupt or talk over his cohost at any opportunity.

  14. Posted January 22, 2020 at 5:56 am | Permalink

    Thanks. Sorry to have spent my time watching his news. What about the woman co-host ????

    • Jenny Haniver
      Posted January 22, 2020 at 8:23 am | Permalink

      For some information about Ana Kasparian, see my comment at the end of comment #2, where I give the link to a trenchant essay about her disgusting hypocrisy. There are always such people in the world. Right now there’s a bunch of them in the US Senate.


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