Tuesday, October 02, 2007

Pathetic Punditry

Bill O’Reilly

Popular right-wing pundit, Bill O’Reilly, has come under an awful lot of fire recently for comments made about a Harlem restaurant.


“I couldn't get over the fact that there was no difference between Sylvia's restaurant and any other restaurant in New York City. I mean, it was exactly the same, even though it's run by blacks, primarily black patronship. It was the same, and that's really what this society's all about now here in the USA. There's no difference……

There wasn't one person in Sylvia's who was screaming, 'M-Fer,' " I think you know what that probably means, " 'I want more iced tea.' 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.”

Now I can understand that the remarks made were not intentionally racist and I’m not calling him such, but frankly the fact that he was surprised that black people weren’t going around yelling “(Place swear-word here), get me more iced tea.” is a little ridiculous.

The remarks should have never been made on the air, that’s a given. But after making such statements he refused to take responsibility and apologize, instead he chose to attack organizations like Media Matter for America saying that they took his statements out of context and that it was a personal attack.

Rush Limbaugh

Unlike the above, this is in no way understandable or excusable.

LIMBAUGH: There's a lot more than that that they don't understand. They can't even -- if -- the next guy that calls here, I'm gonna ask him: Why should we pull -- what is the imperative for pulling out? What's in it for the United States to pull out? They can't -- I don't think they have an answer for that other than, "Well, we just gotta bring the troops home."

CALLER 2: Yeah, and, you know what --

LIMBAUGH: "Save the -- keep the troops safe" or whatever. I -- it's not possible, intellectually, to follow these people.

CALLER 2: No, it's not, and what's really funny is, they never talk to real soldiers. They like to pull these soldiers that come up out of the blue and talk to the media.

LIMBAUGH: The phony soldiers.

CALLER 2: The phony soldiers. If you talk to a real soldier, they are proud to serve. They want to be over in Iraq. They understand their sacrifice, and they're willing to sacrifice for their country.

Those who are serving the country but don’t support the war because they’d rather live in peace, are NOT phony soldiers.

Your own record is hardly reputable. You never took a draft physical; instead you informed the military of a physically disqualifying condition, either a football knee injury or a pilonidal cyst (either one, his story keeps changing).


MHanson said...

Interesting post. I find that whenever I engage in labeling or name-calling it always explodes in my face. I have learned to not judge people or have a stereotypical expectation as to how anyone should act. It keeps me from saying and doing things that I soon regret. Unfortunately, many public figures and television and radio programs make money when people act in this manner. What a shame.

Mr. K said...

Sometimes I wonder about the motives of these news personalities. Are the things they say what they believe, or are the things that they say meant to incite emotion and increase viewers. Can it be that in the year 2008 people still believe such things? How is that be possible?

We live in a world of sound bytes. If it can't be said in a few minutes then the media doesn't believe anyone will listen. That prevents us from having real conversations about these things. It prevents us from having time to reflect and from having time to think before we speak.

I choose not to listen. I choose not to be a part of the dialogue. The less attention they get the better off we'd all be.

Andrew said...

Unfortunately these guys are merely entertainers. If they were a "real news" guys, they'd have some standards to meet.

O’Reilly shows his limited world view. Cream may rise to the top at times, but scum grows there too.

As to Limbaugh, how does bullying and ripping the troops support them? The thing is, democracy (or more accurately in the case of the U.S., a republic) comes when unarmed citizens (not soldiers) take up the rule of law to protect, ensure and enforce their freedoms from and for each other. Unless the soldiers are instilling a conviction in democracy, they are not the means to the end.