Chris Baker, a right-wing radio host from Omaha, Nebraska, is facing backlash both online and in the real world after posting a racist GIF in response to the Derek Chauvin verdict.
Chauvin, who was on trial for the murder of George Floyd in 2020, was found guilty of 1 charge of second-degree unintentional murder, one charge of third-degree murder, and one charge of second-degree manslaughter.
Shortly after the jury's verdict was announced, Baker tweeted the phrase "Guilty!" with a GIF of four Black men wearing loincloths dancing.
The online outrage was nearly immediate, with someone sharing a screenshot of the tweet and asking Nebraska journalists if they thought it was appropriate.
The public overwhelmingly did not think it was appropriate.
@RickyShanks1 @wehavethepeople @kfabnews @CBakerShow And we wonder why we have such a problem with racism in this c… https://t.co/vczwK0D9GS— BlueDotNebraskaMom (@BlueDotNebraskaMom) 1618961545.0
Many called for Baker to be fired.
@wehavethepeople @kfabnews @CBakerShow This guy should not be on air. In most countries he would be fired because t… https://t.co/CLDJfO5MqT— Manisha Sinha (@Manisha Sinha) 1619000568.0
@SenMcCollister @CBakerShow @kfabnews This is an easy decision to make, @kfabnews. Immediate dismissal without severance or notice.— HIGH AS TOM KITE (@HIGH AS TOM KITE) 1619009666.0
Baker claimed the tweet was a "boomer Twitter moment" and he posted the wrong GIF with the tweet.
He told the Lincoln Journal Star:
"That's not me, that's not who I really am."
He claimed he posted the GIF in error, instead of a GIF of Black people celebrating as he had intended, because he was trying to send out the tweet during the bustle of work.
When asked if he thought the tweet was racist as posted, he responded:
"I don't know if that's a fair question. It's horrible, is what it was."
"There's a difference between being intentional and being a fat-fingered boomer on Twitter. I don't look at Black people that way."
"I apologize for a stupid move. I apologize for the mistake."
That was apparently not sufficient explanation for his employer, however. He was fired from his position with KFAB, a subsidiary of iHeartRadio, Wednesday morning.
iHeartRadio's area president for Nebraska, C. Taylor Walet III, described Baker's tweet as "completely inappropriate and unacceptable" in a statement.
"Please know that this does not represent our viewpoint or our values, and we take this situation very seriously. Accordingly, Chris Baker's employment with our company has been terminated."
In the category of 'that-didn't-take-long' @kfabnews personality Chris Baker has been fired after posting an offen… https://t.co/V01gJjmLj1— Paul Hammel (@Paul Hammel) 1619041006.0