Just days before the 2022 midterm election and cable news giant reportedly cut ties with popular weekend host Tiffany Cross. MSNBC’s cancellation of the “Cross Connection” is reminiscent of how the cable giant snatched the airwaves away from another veteran journalist. The current host and managing editor of WNYC’s “The Takeaway,” Professor Melissa Harris-Perry, was previously dismissed from MSNBC in a very ugly manner.
Harris-Perry tweeted she had no insight into what happened but had very high praise for Cross.
“One thing is certain–@TiffanyDCross will always have my support and solidarity. Proud of what she’s accomplished. Excited to see what she’ll do next,” Tweeted Harris-Perry.
#WheresTiffany trended early Saturday afternoon on Twitter. Using the hashtag, Alicia Garza tweeted that she was scheduled to be on “The Cross Connection” to discuss polling of Black voters.
Removing Cross from the airwaves effectively denies Black strategists and organizers a platform to discuss the issues and concerns of Black voters ahead of the midterm elections. Cross called the abrupt termination of her show “disheartening” after alleged calls for reckoning with race in media after the 2020 uprisings.
“Now is not the retreat to politics or journalism as usual,” Cross said in a statement. “It is my hope that the last two years at MSNBC have been disruptive and transformative, changing how politics are discussed and making policy more digestible.”
She also called attention to the increase in political violence and the danger of speaking the truth and challenging the open resurgence of white supremacy. Many on Twitter pointed out the timing of the show’s end, given Cross was recently targeted by Fox host Tucker Carlson. Iconic civil rights attorney Sherrilyn Ifill noted that MSNBC’s action further emboldened Carlson.
Elie Mystal, justice correspondent at The Nation and a frequent contributor to “The Cross Connection,” called out the high price of “telling the truth about white people to white people.”
“Tiffany was special because she proactively centered her work and her voice in nonwhite audiences,” Mystal tweeted. It’s not that she didn’t care what white people thought. It’s that she refused to bend her voice around those forces. She was willing to pay the price to uplift nonwhite voices.
A clear example of the “Cross Connection” commitment to uplifting news and commentary that centered non-white communities can be seen in a recent interview with Tax Professor Dorothy Brown, highlighting the crisis of corporate price gouging amid record inflation.
Cross recently joined Jemele Hill in sharing a message with Black Voters Matter supporters about Democracy being on the ballot and the importance of engaging in the upcoming election.
But MSNBC’s abrupt cancellation of “The Cross Connection” also highlights the importance of a robust Black media committed to engaging with the issues impacting our communities. Building an apparatus committed to news and uplifting powerful stories challenges the status quo and provides a pathway forward for change.
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