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FOX News Attacks San Francisco Again

Reported by Ellen - November 17, 2005

The Sean Hannity Hate-O-Meter must have been in the red zone throughout the entire interview last night with Todd Chretien, from College Not Combat, the group that authored the initiative approved by San Francisco voters last week to oppose military recuiters in high schools and colleges. Chretien looked young and inexperienced but he put a lot of professional politicos to shame with his expert handling of Hannity's blustering bombast.

Rather than debate or discuss the issue, Hannity started off by trying to change the subject with one of his gotcha questions, "Would you support America unilaterally disarming?"

Chretien demurred by saying the initiative was not about disarming and while Hannity kept trying to make him answer, Chretien politely refused again and again. "Let's talk about the real issues... the people who are dying and who are killing and being killed in Iraq."

Hannity claimed he was "trying to understand your attitude toward the military and then I'm going to get to the specificity of your case, here."

When did Hannity ever try to understand anyone's attitude he didn't disagree with? Chretien wisely did not fall into the trap.

Testy in the face of being thwarted, Hannity said "The bottom line is, I can't get a straight answer out of you." Then he revealed what he was probably planning to say no matter what Chretien answered. " But here's the bottom line. America's military, sir, is necessary even for people like YOU who have ridiculous notions about world peace and an understanding of evil in the world. Let me just give you the facts..." Hannity then treated Chretien to a little lesson in American history and how our military "beat back" the "forces of facism," Nazis and liberated millions in Iraq and Afghanistan. I thought a tear might come to his eye as he ended on what he must have thought was a rousing note. "Sir, that's a military that keeps the peace, that ensures freedom, democracy, liberty. Sir, naive people like you don't seem to get that, do you?"

Chretien paused a moment before answering that "the people of San Francisco have spoken and I think it's a real insult that just because the people took a democratic vote which one of your hosts, Bill O'Reilly, disagreed with, he thinks it's fine for terrorist attacks to happen in San Francisco."

That was the end of Hannity's segment. Alan Colmes looked like he was trying not to laugh as he started a discussion about the provision buried in the No Child Left Behind Act which makes federal funding dependent on recruitment in schools.

Chretien discussed the issue for a bit then, when he must have known the segment was about to end, he said, "We think that we should have a democratic, moderated, fair and balanced debate with Bill O'Reilly. Once again, we repeat the invitation."

Hannity interrupted to point his finger and say, "Let me tell you something. That military allows you to make a fool of yourself because it gives you the freedom to put silly and superfluous resolutions like this up to the people of San Francisco. The people of San Francisco don't get it but that doesn't suprise America. Trust me."

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