Matthew Schlapp defends Sesame Street’s politics-only promo

On NPR’s Fresh Air, Matthew Schlapp, the chair of the American Conservative Union, vigorously defended Sesame Street over its politics-only promotion.

“I would actually ask you to take a step back and just look at a few of the episodes on Sesame Street over the years. One is called ‘Brown Baby,’ which comes out before Obama became President,” said Schlapp, an adult. “In that episode, it was a young child that was talking to a black man and that conversation is completely about race. It was profoundly controversial at the time.”

When Nathan Greenberg asked about Sesame Street’s targets, “brown babies,” and characterizations of brown folks as dumb and uncultured, Schlapp appeared to interrupt the discussion, explaining that he was just trying to get “fascinating” information about the campaign.

Schlapp went on to defend another promo, which recently showed a teachable moment about the importance of saying “please” and “thank you”—“somewhat different from [his] conservative viewpoint.”

Conservative pundits have launched an angry campaign against Sesame Street, with several sites urging a grassroots effort to defund the show’s foundation over what they perceive as racism and liberal hypocrisy, even though it supports all children regardless of race.

Schlapp said he plans to file a Freedom of Information Act request to request the nature of Sesame Street’s funding.

Listen to their debate.

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