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Bill O’Reilly’s Ignorance

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Bill O’Reilly recently showed his ignorance as he claimed, "There wasn't one person in Sylvia's who was screaming, 'M-fer, I want more iced tea.'" He was referring to a popular restaurant in Harlem. The right-wing FOX News broadcaster also said, “You know, I mean, everybody was — it was like going into an Italian restaurant in an all-white suburb in the sense of people were sitting there, and they were ordering and having fun. And there wasn't any kind of craziness at all.” Comments like these, which are meant to be complimentary, are completely ignorant. 

Based on O’Reilly’s statements, we are supposed to believe that most Black-owned restaurants are nothing but ghettos that don’t have the same environment as the suburban white restaurants. O’Reilly’s comments are far worse than those of Imus for the simple reason that O’Reilly was actually being serious. But is anybody really surprised given Bill O’Reilly’s past?

In an interview from 2002, Bill O’Reilly referred to Mexicans as “wetbacks” and was surprisingly given a pass for his insensitive remarks. In 2003, at a charity benefit for inner-city school children, he said, “Does anyone know where the Best Men are? I hope they're not in the parking lot stealing our hubcaps!” in reference to a group that was supposed to perform. In June of 2004, he made these offensive marks about Iraqis. Do a Google search with the terms “Bill O’Reilly” and “racist” and you’ll come up with a lot more.  

Let’s not forget that Bill O’Reilly has been very critical of Black music acts such as Ludacris and Snoop Dogg for the sexist nature of their lyrics, despite the fact that Bill O’Reilly settled a sexual harassment suit out of court. The moralizer of the right allegedly verbalized his fantasies about falafels, dildos, vibrators and loofas to co-worker Andrea Mackris.

Bill O’Reilly’s latest installment to his Hall of Shame probably won’t bring him down; he has the same audience as Rush Limbaugh, whose motto is “Do as I say, not as I do.” Even though his ignorant, hypocritical face will brace FOX News for years to come, it’s important that people recognize ignorance and stupidity. Bill O’Reilly is certainly counting his big bucks, but at what expense to his soul?

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About Daryl D

  • Grant

    You are making a mountain out of a molehill. In Italian restaurants I dont hear “I have an offer you cant refuse”……Have you no humor?

  • Clavos

    “Bill O’Reilly is certainly counting his big bucks, but at what expense to his soul?”

    He doesn’t have a soul; nobody does.

    Souls are a fable invented by religionists, the same people who created all those fables about ‘god’.

  • http://sterfish.blogspot.com Sterfish

    While I’m not denying the incredible ignorance of O’Reilly, let’s look at the bright side. Maybe his views of African-Americans will change as a result of this experience.

    One can hope.

  • http://www.elitebloggers.com Dave Nalle

    I think you’re taking these comments the wrong way, as are many others. He’s complimenting the restaurant and the people there and pointing out in a very positive way that the hip hop culture he tediously campaigns against is NOT mainstream black culture. What’s wrong with making that point?

    Dave

  • http://blogcritics.org/writer.php?name=gonzo%20marx gonzo marx

    what’s wrong with making that point?

    flip the script

    if an ethnic reporter/journalist/pundit had walked into a Cracker Barrel and remarked how nice everyone was, nobody spitting tobacco on the floor, or screaming cowboy obscenities the way they thought they would, etc…

    wouldn’t that come across as racist?

    a lot of racism is just that, insulting stereotypes painting a population with a false broad brush in a negative manner…

    it ain’t just the negativity that makes it racist…it’s the fallacy of painting an entire people with that stereotype of behavior, imo

    your mileage may vary

    Excelsior?

  • troll

    so…O’Reilly harbors racist notions based on stereotyping and lack of exposure – what else is new – ?

    ban intra-racial breeding

  • brian

    I’m no fan of O’Reilly but this is a pathetic attempt to make something out of nothing. Listen to the entire conversation, as I have. As the commenter above noted, O’Reilly was simply making the point that the reality of mainstream black culture runs counter to what entertainment and the popular media portray. It was an attempt on his part to say something helpful.

    On the other hand, Media Matters has done something much more harmful. In its attempt to potray O’Reilly as either cartoonishly ignorant or blissfully racist, they have simply added to the difficulty of speaking about race in this country. They simply took the words they wanted and printed them out of context to score points against their enemy. And in that regard, they have more in common with their perceived right-wing adversaries than they would care to admit.

  • Clarence

    Ironically, while the Culture Warrior from Levittown’s current travails stem from his commentary on the Black community of Harlem, it is more a reflection of the his own sociological background.

    The Culture Warrior, like his colleague Seán O’Hannity, both hail from Lawn Guyland, a cultural, sociological, and intellectual disaster area.

    The constitutional basis of this…well, shall I say…anti-culture, is “white flight”… The O’Reilly’s and the Hannitys ran off to overnight suburban developments and the sight of dark skin or the sound of non-English speech.

    For all of the bravado of it’s residents, Lawn Guyland is a region gripped with crippling fear, precisely xenophobia.

    Not only is “the other” to be avoided, but rather feared as well, and that fear is passed on from one generation to the next.

    Can one be surprised then at their unbridled enthusiasm for the incurious George W. Bush?

    O’Reilly would do well to stop and seriously consider that if not himself, then his upbringing has become the issue.

    And the rest of the country should ask themselve just who it is who is telling them how the rest of the world works.

    ——————————————————————————–

    During the April 12, 2006, broadcast of The Radio Factor, O’Reilly claimed that on the April 11 edition of The O’Reilly Factor, guest Charles Barron, a New York City councilman, had revealed the “hidden agenda” behind the current immigration debate, which, O’Reilly said, was “to wipe out ‘white privilege’ and to have the browning of America.”

  • Dr Dreadful

    As big a twat as O’Vilely is, anyone with half a brain cell can see through the spin and recognise that he was trying – albeit hamfistedly – to say something nice.

    Unfortunately it came out as a Joe Biden-style size-eleven-in-mouth gaffe.

  • chuck

    If you listen to the conversation you can easily tell that O’reilly was not insulting or patronizing blacks. I heard the conversation when it originally aired and thought nothing of it. I heard it again and can tell you it is not putting down blacks. He was explaining how there are many white who stereotype blacks because they only see the hip-hop culture, and do not realize that there is a main stream black culture that is no different than mainstream white culture.

    His comments were just pointing out that there are no differences. Listen to the entire conversation and it is easy to hear his point. Mnay of the news reports do portary his comments negatively, but it is an inaccurate portayal.

  • Dan

    Media Matters, once again, exposed as fraudulant simpletons. yawn

  • Dr Dreadful

    As I said, Chuck, anyone with half a brain cell…

    Even the author of this post from the Newshounds blog, the sole purpose of which site is to smack down the stupidness of O’Reilly and the other Fox bottom feeders, accepts that he meant well. But the piece does make the good point that the way he framed his remarks shows his root attitude very clearly – just as Senator Biden’s comment about Obama being a ‘presentable’ black man did.

  • Dan

    Isn’t the contemporary civil rights crusade wonderful?

    O’reilly is excoriated for extending a compliment, meanwhile, Al Sharpton is down in Jenna campaigning tirelessley for the rights of 6 blacks to stomp an unconscious white boy.

  • Clavos

    Interesting that both Al Sharpton (a frequent guest) and the Rev. Jesse Jackson (in his first ever appearance on The O’Reilly Factor), both appeared on The Factor this week in support of O’Reilly in this controversy.

    Doc is right; O’Reilly was somewhat hamhanded in his presentation, but he was not being racist, and both of those gentlemen affirmed that they didn’t take O’Reilly’s comments as such.

  • Joel

    Chuck, Mr. Dreadful, and especially DARYL – I think we all can agree that, given the context, O’Reilly’s statements were complimentary and pointing out the flaws of many whites in America (if not, listen to the show). However, if you think his choice of words are a reflection of HIS prejudices, you’re either blind or would rather blame others for your own failures. I’m white and from Mississippi – right now, you’re thinking of me as uneducated, inbred, racist, living in a trailer, chewing tobacco, waving a Confederate flag, and listening to country music, right? None of the above apply to me, but do outsiders think of whites from Mississippi like this? Yes, watch a movie with a setting in Mississippi or any Southern state. It’s not the 60s anymore, we live a lot differently. Just like O’Reilly said, Americans in general need to stop stereotyping and look beyond entertainment to find out about a group of people. I’ve learned the most about African Americans from my classmates and neighbors who have become close friends, not from celebrities. Similarly, my other closest friends are exchange students from Europe, Asia, and South America. I could tell you a lot about the cultures of their home countries (i.e., in Finland, they eat mayonnaise on their fries – but I couldn’t name a single stereotype we have in America). When it comes to black and white, stereotypes run rampant…does that mean I’m prejudiced against whites because I can name a few stereotypes?

  • http://www.republicofdave.com Dave Nalle

    Isn’t the contemporary civil rights crusade wonderful?

    The problem is that they have no real civil rights crisis to be activist about, so to keep the outrage going they have to manufacture stuff like this.

    Dave

  • STM

    Yeah, what’s all the fuss about?? We all know Bill’s a dick, but this is just bollocks.

    ZSo Bill went to a restaurant in a black area of NY and found it just like any other restaurant. Maybe, as doc points out, in his hamfisted way he was simply trying to break down the kind of stereotyping to which many white Americans still cling.

    And Dave’s right, to a point. There’s no real civil rights crisis in America these days, just a racism hangover that lessens with age.

  • daryl d

    sorry, but most white people I know do not judge Blacks by rap music as Bill O’Reilly implies. His statements were completely offensive to people of any race and people should boycott Fox advertisers. I usually can’t stand Al Sharpton or Jesse Jackson, but I can’t wait for them to pull an Imus on Mr. O’Dildo.

  • Clavos

    “I usually can’t stand Al Sharpton or Jesse Jackson, but I can’t wait for them to pull an Imus on Mr. O’Dildo.”

    Read my comment #14, daryl.

    They both appeared this week on O’Reilly’s TV show (Jackson, tonight, for the first time ever) to support him.

  • daryl d

    How could Jackson support O’Reilly after all the bad things O’Reilly said about him. Sounds like some $ is being paid.

    I am joining a group of people protesting at Fox News tomorrow. I’ll report on the details.

  • STM

    Good luck at Fox, Daryl … I’m sure Rupert will be worried. They’ll just close the curtains.

  • Dan

    What’s your sign going to say Daryl?

    “Bill O’reilly implied that most whites judge blacks by rap music”?

  • Clarence Thomas

    Daryl,
    You barely pointed out that the allegations against Bill were just that, allegations.
    The issue here is women.
    If they don’t get what they want the play the “sex” card.

  • sgtmajorbrad

    Blacks aren’t judged by hip hop music they’re judged by black actions. Take your feces rubbing, rape accusing, scholarship giving black activist justifying their actions beyond the scope of sanity and reason and you have something someone will remember for a very long time!