Cathy is the Liberal Sherpa on Fox News’ Tucker Carlson Tonight show. She is also a former Washington Post Magazine columnist, the author of Latino Wisdom, the publisher at Catalina Magazine, and a former Senior Advisor in media for U.S. Health and Human Services.
BOLD: You are known as the ‘Liberal Sherpa’ on Fox News. Do you think you’re helping to bridge the gap between liberals and conservatives with your appearance on Fox?
CATHY AREU: Without a doubt, I know I’m bridging the gap between liberals and conservatives by being the “Liberal Sherpa” on Fox News each week. That’s why I’m there. As a liberal, I discuss some of the most controversial topics of the day, or the week, or the year, with Host Tucker Carlson—one of the most conservative TV news host of our time. Yet, we don’t talk over each other. We don’t argue. We don’t disrespect one another. I think we’re showing viewers that, if a “crazy” liberal and a strict conservative can discuss hot topics with civility, anyone can.
B: As a former contributing editor of the Washington Post, you interviewed many high profile newsmakers. Who was your favorite interviewee and why?
CA: I loved every notable person I interviewed. I felt like the luckiest person on the planet to be able to sit with the biggest influencers of our time. But, if I had to choose my favorite interviewee, it would have to be Civil Rights Leader Dorothy Height. I learned things about the day Martin Luther King gave his “I Have a Dream Speech” that we can’t learn in history books. She taught me about fighting for what you believe in, no matter what the consequences are. She made me realize that the people we read about in history books are not fictional characters with interesting stories. They are in fact daring people who choose the road less traveled to make all of our lives better. Height was on stage next to King when he gave his speech, but the press at the time cut all of the women on stage out of the picture because they were less important than the men on stage, in their opinion. Yet, if you look close enough, you can see the rim of her hat in the old photos. And that gave her so much pride. She knew she was there, and how she helped race relations in our country, even if history failed to tell us. … As a journalist, I was finally able to tell this story. Her story. And her words still inspire me, every time I walk into a lion’s den.
B: According to RealClear Politics, Trump’s poll numbers are rising amongst the Hispanic community. Since he took office, do you think President Trump has taken any positive steps in building a relationship with Hispanic voters?
CA: Absolutely not. As Trump likes to say: polls aren’t always right. I have to agree with him on this one. Polls can be wrong. I know Trump’s comments about Mexicans being “rapists” and “animals” has not helped build a relationship with Hispanics. His rhetoric about our community is sickening too many of us. Plus, the campaign promise of building a wall to keep Hispanics out of our country simply serves to appease voters who dislike our newest wave of immigrants in our country. Trump’s relationship with Hispanics will go down in history in the same light as President Andrew Jackson’s relationship with Native Americans.
B: What could the President do better in terms of reaching out to people of color?
CA: He can start by dropping his “Make America Great Again” propaganda. When minorities hear that, all we hear is: “Let’s make America all white again,” because America is great. The only thing that has changed is the variety of skin tones we see in our society. Is this the America he wants to eliminate?
B: According to FBI statistics, hate crimes rose in the United States for two consecutive years in 2016 and 2017. What do you think is driving this trend and how can we combat it?
CA: The number of registered hate groups went up over 200% after the election of President Obama. These hate groups have led to more hate crimes. The color of Obama’s skin divided our country. I think the change was too scary to too many people. Now, with Trump preaching the exact opposite of what Obama stood for, the division and hate has continued to grow. It’s up to every one of us to embrace our changing country and learn to respect one another. We need less hate and more love. Everyone needs to chill out!
B: Will the Trump administration’s hardline immigration policies drive Hispanic voters to the polls in November?
CA: Because Hispanics are the fastest growing minority in our country, and the fastest growing minority group of voters, we need them to head to the polls this November. And, they say that people who are motivated, angry, and want change are the ones who vote in elections. If Trump keeps insulting Hispanics, then we should see a large number of these citizens heading to the polls to have their voices heard.
B: You recently said on Fox that it’s the Bernie Sanders/Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez message that is resonating with young liberal voters. Is Democratic Socialism the future of the Democratic Party? If so, how would this be reconciled with the older generation of Democrats today? Is that message too extreme for a majority of the American people?
CA: I’ve also said that socialism is not the future of the democratic party. Bernie Sanders and Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez stand for many issues all democrats support: improving our public schools, helping the environment, raising minimum wage, protecting women’s rights, creating positive immigration reform, to name a few. But using the word “socialism” to explain their positions is not the way to go. American people don’t see “socialism” as a positive word, and it will take to long to educate everyone on its true meaning. So, I, for one, think the democrats should stick with the issues we care about and drop their “socialism” mantra. It’s as annoying as MAGA.
B: You and Tucker Carlson seem to have a real rapport on-camera, are you both good friends off-screen?
CA: I wouldn’t say we’re “friends” off screen. We respect each other. And we get along off-screen. But he’s in Washington D.C. and I’m in New York, so we really don’t see each other after our segments. So, what you see on TV is two people catching up and having a real conversation about a topic they don’t agree on.
B: You recently teamed up with the Independent Women’s Forum, a Bold sponsor, as an ambassador for their #ChampionWomen movement. Can you tell us a little bit about the movement and your role in it?
CA: The movement is exactly what we need right now. #ChampionWomen is about bringing women together — from the left and the right — to show that we’re more than “women.” We are humans who respect each other and are trying to lead by example. We need to stick together and make our world a better place for the women of tomorrow. We’re all in this together, no matter what your political views may be. My role, as one of the few liberals to join the movement, is to show that I respect all women and want all of us to succeed in this male-dominated culture of ours.
B: What does Bold mean to you?
CA: Being Bold is about being strong, and fighting for what’s right — with everything I do — on and off screen.