April 18, 2024

Elizabeth Warren blasts Comcast for threatening civil rights in Byron Allen lawsuit

LOS ANGELES, CALIFORNIA – DECEMBER 19: Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-MA) speaks during the Democratic presidential primary debate at Loyola Marymount University on December 19, 2019 in Los Angeles, California. Seven candidates out of the crowded field qualified for the 6th and last Democratic presidential primary debate of 2019 hosted by PBS NewsHour and Politico. (Photo by Justin Sullivan/Getty Images)

Democratic presidential candidate, Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-MA), is weighing in on the legal battle between media mogul Byron Allen and Comcast, calling out the cable giant for threatening civil rights.

On Thursday, Sen. Warren tweeted out an article about Allen’s racial discrimination case against Comcast, saying Comcast’s challenge to the Civil Rights Act of 1866 was “deeply disturbing.”

“This is deeply concerning,” tweeted Sen. Warren. “If Comcast wins in their case before the Supreme Court, a key civil rights protection could be rolled back—making it nearly impossible for those facing racial discrimination to be able to hold companies accountable.”

READ MORE: Elizabeth Warren releases plan to fight white nationalist violence

Allen, CEO of Entertainment Studios and The Weather Channel, alleges that Comcast refused to do business with him because he is Black.  According to $20 billion dollar the lawsuit, Comcast claimed Allen’s TV network offerings didn’t meet their standards, but subsequently made deals with less successful white-owned networks.

Comcast’s legal strategy in fighting Allen’s claims included appealing to the Supreme Court, challenging the interpretation of the Civil Rights Act of 1866, Section 1981, to require anyone suing for racial discrimination to prove race was the only motivating factor for discrimination.  The Department of Justice has issued an amicus brief in support of Comcast. Legal experts say the change to the Section 1981, the nation’s original civil rights law, will create devastating ripple effects.

Sen. Warren joins Sen. Cory Booker, Sen. Kamala Harris, and a growing list of business, civil rights and entertainment leaders, such as Diddy, Killer Mike and Dr. Bernice King, who have called out Comcast for the maneuver.

Sen. Warren is no stranger to calling out big corporations.  Earlier this year she called upon large tech giants like Amazon and Facebook to break up and submit to regulation, saying they were too powerful.

READ MORE: Diddy blasts Comcast over Byron Allen lawsuit: ‘Comcast is choosing to be on the wrong side of history.’

**Editor’s note: theGrio is owned by Entertainment Studios.**


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