You might have missed this; according to a former managing editor at Fox News, the station chairman Roger Ailes had bullet proof glass installed in his midtown offices because he feared assassination attempts by gay activists.
The fascinating new article, which suggest Ailes gives Glen Beck a good run for his money in the bug-eyed paranoia stakes, recounts how Fox News owner Rupert Murdoch installed Ailes in the corner office on Fox’s second floor at 1211 Avenue of the Americas in Manhattan.
But the relatively exposed location made Ailes deeply uneasy. According to the article, which ran in Rolling Stone:
'It was close to the street, and he lived in fear that gay activists would try to attack him in retaliation over his hostility to gay rights. (In 1989, Ailes had broken up a protest of a Rudy Giuliani speech by gay activists, grabbing demonstrator by the throat and shoving him out the door.)
Barricading himself behind a massive mahogany desk, Ailes insisted on having “bombproof glass” installed in the windows – even going so far as to personally inspect samples of high-tech plexiglass, as though he were picking out new carpet. Looking down on the street below, he expressed his fears to Cooper, the editor he had tasked with up-armoring his office. 'They’ll be down there protesting,' Ailes said. 'Those gays.'
Nothing's ever easy, is it? You would think that a man who has the might of one of the biggest media empires in America would feel a little less vulnerable. The gays don't own a news channel. But the Rolling Stone article seems to suggest that the source of Ailes objections to gay rights may stem from the outsized fears they create in him.
Of course history has given us many powerful mean at the head of empires (military and media) who harbored paranoiac fears about being attacked by far less powerful minorities. It usually ends the same way.
It's odd to know he has lived - or may still live - in fear of 'the gays.'