Trump appointee Carl Higbie resigns as public face of agency that runs AmeriCorps after KFile review of racist, sexist, anti-Muslim and anti-LGBT comments on the radio
Posted January 18, 2018 9:52 a.m. EST
(CNN) — WARNING: This story contains graphic language.
Trump administration appointee Carl Higbie resigned Thursday as chief of external affairs for the federal government's volunteer service organization after a CNN KFile review of racist, sexist, anti-Muslim and anti-LGBT comments he made on the radio.
"Effective immediately, Carl Higbie has resigned as Chief of External Affairs at CNCS," Samantha Jo Warfield, a spokesperson for CNCS, said in a statement.
The White House did not immediately respond to a request for comment on Higbie's resignation.
Higbie, a former Navy SEAL and conservative media personality, was a surrogate for Trump during the 2016 presidential campaign, appearing on cable news and serving as the spokesman for the Trump-aligned Great America PAC. He was appointed to the Corporation for National and Community Service (CNCS) in 2017 to direct the public image and messaging of the federal department that manages millions of Americans in volunteer services like AmeriCorps and Senior Corps.
CNCS, formed in 1993, connects volunteers with service opportunities, often in the neediest areas across the country. According to the organization's website, the projects are mainly focused on six priority areas: disaster services, economic opportunity, education, environmental stewardship, healthy futures, and veterans and military families.
In one of the comments unearthed by KFile, Higbie said you could "guess the color" of a family he described that lived in his condo association.
"I told this story the other day on my show. Somebody who lives in my condo association that has five kids, and it's her and her husband with the five kids and the mother, the grandmother of the kids, and they don't have jobs, they're there all the time -- I bet you can guess what color they are -- and they have no job," he said.
The remark is just one of several racist and inflammatory comments the KFile review found. As host of the radio program "Sound of Freedom," on Internet talk radio, Higbie made shocking comments about black Americans, Muslims, women, LGBT people, veterans suffering from PTSD and immigrants.
Speaking on 'Sound of Freedom' in December 2013, Higbie, while recounting a time he placed an advertisement to give away free firewood, said "the black race" had "lax" morals. He added that black women think "breeding is a form of government employment."
"Only one person was actually cordial to me," Higbie said. "Every other black person was rude. They wanted me to either load the wood, completely split it for them or some sort of you know assistance in labor. Now, mind you the ad was for free firewood, come take it all you want. And I believe that this translates directly into the culture that is breeding this welfare and the high percentage of people on welfare in the black race. It's a lax of morality."
He added later, "We're promoting birth control to a black woman because of the incredibly high rate of children born out of wedlock that are under-cared for or not cared for at all. The taxpayers are tired of supporting government checks going to these people who think that breeding is a form of employment. I'm sorry if black people are the majority of the targeted audience. They are, statistically they are."
In January 2013, on Sound of Freedom, Higbie said he was bothered that black Americans call themselves African-Americans when they had never been to Africa.
"The whole African-American thing gets me whipped up because it's like 99% -- and I'm paraphrasing here -- of people who write down African-American have never been to Africa," Higbie said. "So barring dual citizenship, you're American or you're African, but you're not both. I don't care what you think. That's another thing that just sets me off."
In February 2013, one of Higbie's guests spoke about teaching in an urban area.
"An urban area, you mean the ghetto?" interjected Higbie.
Higbie repeatedly said on the radio that he did not like Muslims.
"People say, 'you know, you're so harsh,'" Higbie said on Warrior Talk Radio in August 2014. "I was called an Islamophobe and I was like, 'no, no, no, no, no, I'm not afraid of them. I don't like them. Big difference.' And they were like, 'well, you're racist.' I was like, fine if that's the definition of it, then I guess I am.'"
Speaking on "Sound of Freedom" in June 2013, Higbie said he didn't like Muslims because he hated their religious ideology.
"Go back to your Muslim shithole and go crap in your hands and bang little boys on Thursday nights," Higbie said. "I just don't like Muslim people. People always rip me a new one for that. Carl, you're racist, you can't, you're sexist. I'm like Jesus Christ. I just don't like Muslim people because their ideology sucks."
"Well people are like, 'well, you can't hate somebody just for being Muslim,'" Higbie added. "It's like, yeah, I can. Do you hate people who rape little boys? They say, 'oh, of course. They're just terrible people.' Well, yeah, most Muslims believe that to have sex with men is OK, which I don't like it all. But second off, it's the ideology of a child molester. The ideology of a Muslim is what I don't like. They are screwed up in the head and it makes, pisses me off."
On soldiers with PTSD:
Higbie derided members of the military suffering from severe PTSD as having "a weak mind" and said 75% of those afflicted were either lying or milking it for federal money.
"Yeah I'm a gonna go out on limb here and say, a lot of people are going to disagree with this comment," Higbie said on Sound of Freedom in February 2013. "But severe PTSD, where guys are bugging out and doing violent acts, is a trait of a weak mind. Now things like (military member) Brandon, where he was legitimately blown up and a loud noise makes him on edge -- completely understandable, but when someone performs an act of violence that is a, it is a weak mind. That is a crazy person, and the fact that they're trying to hide it behind PTSD makes me want to vomit."
"I'd say 75% of people with PTSD don't actually have it, and they're either milking something for a little extra money in disability or they're just, they honestly are just lying," Higbie said in August 2014, as a guest on an Internet radio show. "Twenty-five percent legitimately do have problems. They have bad dreams. They can't cope. They have problems with noises and things like that. And I really think there are people that cannot deal with the stress of combat and some people can."
Shooting undocumented immigrants:
In a February 2013 episode of "Sound of Freedom," Higbie said American citizens with guns should be allowed to go to the border to shoot undocumented immigrants crossing into the US.
"What's so wrong with wanting to put up a fence and saying, 'hey, everybody with a gun, if you want to go shoot people coming across our border illegally, you can do it fo' free,'" Higbie said. "And you can do it on your own, and you'll be under the command of the, you know, National Guard unit or a Border Patrol, I think stick a fence six feet high with signs on it in both English and Spanish and it says 'if you cross this border, this is the American border, you cross it, we're going to shoot you.'"
"You cross my border, I will shoot you in the face," Higbie added. "I will go down there. I'll volunteer to go down there and stand on that border for, I don't know, a week or so at a time and that'll be my civil duty. I'll volunteer to do it."
Smeared Sen. Dianne Feinstein and Democratic Leader Nancy Pelosi:
In June 2013 on Sound of Freedom, Higbie called California Sen. Dianne Feinstein a "bitch" whose head he would like to smack into House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi's.
"Nothing gets me going like Ted Cruz, when he went off on the Feinstein Bitch about the Second Amendment and he put her in her place," Higbie said. "That was just fantastic. I can't stand that woman. She's another one. Her and Pelosi. I'd love to just take both their heads and smack them together a couple of times."
On gay people:
In May 2013 on Sound of Freedom, Higbie said he did not like gay people.
"Rhode Island, land of more liberals, has just OK'ed, gay marriage," Higbie said. "Congratuf'in'lations, you suck, Rhode Island. Why would you do that? Go ahead and twist the knife a little, little bit more. I mean, you are breaking the morals, the moral fiber of our country. You know, I don't like gay people. I just don't."
Later in the show, Higbie elaborated on his views.
"I talk about this in my book, you know, I was, I was molested by a gay guy when I was a young kid and that kind of set the precedence for me. So I, I just, I really don't care for them. You know what, you want to be gay? Fine. Do it over in your own corner," he said. "If I was president of the United States, I wouldn't make laws saying you can't be gay because I believe that's your right. So go over there, be gay, don't march down in the middle of the street and your drag outfit being fairies and things like that. Don't throw it in my face. Don't make me like it because I don't -- do it on your own. Do it over there and let it be your thing."
Higbie frequently questioned the authenticity of President Barack Obama's birth certificate. Obama was born in Hawaii in 1961.
In 2015, Higbie spoke for nearly an hour with "Where's Obama's Birth Certificate" radio.
"This birth certificate thing," Higbie said. "Sure, absolutely legitimate claim. You want to know if this, where was this guy born. That's a legitimate question." Higbie added later that Obama's birth certificate was "pixelated."
In March 2013 on Sound of Freedom, Higbe called Obama "the Muslim who was born in Kenya -- don't even get me started on that."
He later added, "Harvard, up in Boston, he put on his fricking application that he was born in Kenya."
Claims that Obama was born in Kenya or that he forged his documents are false.
Said people on government assistance shouldn't be able to vote:
In June 2016, while appearing as a guest on Global Patriot Radio, Higbie said people who receive government assistance shouldn't be allowed to vote in the subsequent election.
"If you have taken any benefit, if you have elected to take any benefit from the government at any given time during any election cycle, you do not get to vote at the subsequent election," he said. "Because now you have people voting for a living. They don't have to work, and if you want to solve them now -- it's very hard to get something like this past, I'll be honest -- but if you pass something like that, what you would see is, you would see people who aren't contributing to the system, not voting for the system and you'll have a massive slide to the right in this country."