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Boulder, the new Rosie

Reported by Chrish - June 1, 2007 -

Well, we wondered who would be O'Reilly's next target now that Rosie O'Donnell has left the building. After all, there has to be a big, juicy, controversial story to follow obsessively and to channel outrage away from the Bush administration and their abundant scandals and screw-ups. Tonight 5/31/07 O'Reilly signalled that the people of Boulder Colorado, that school district and its leaders are all in his sights.
With video.

As Deborah reported today, the people and students of Boulder are outraged at O'Reilly's selective snippets smearing their town and are demanding an apology. But in his Talking Points Memo, O'Reilly promised "if those three (officials) think things are bad now, wait until they see what's coming down the pike at them very soon." The gauntlet has been dropped; O'Reilly is making himself the center of the news once again!

Calling the Boulder school officials and presenters "far-left", "villains", "cowards", and "loons", and some of the kids "snotty," O'Reilly played the same out-of-context clips from last night and railed some more about irresponsibilty, corruption, and possible illegality (promising more on that tomorrow).

This is another trumped up feud (pardon the pun) for ratings and to make himself the great crusader for children. But he has grossly misrepresented the facts of the situation, and the people of Boulder are not happy at being portrayed this way in the world. O'Reilly broke at least these following rules, from *The SPJ Code of Ethics:

- Distinguish between advocacy and news reporting. Analysis and commentary
should be labeled and not misrepresent fact or context.
- Support the open exchange of views, even views they find repugnant.
- Tell the story of the diversity and magnitude of the human experience
boldly, even when it is unpopular to do so.
- Examine their own cultural values and avoid imposing those values on
others.

- Test the accuracy of information from all sources and exercise care to
avoid inadvertent error. Deliberate distortion is never permissible.

*That's the Society of Professional Journalists, NOT Secular-Progressive Journalists. The SPJ Code of Ethics is voluntarily embraced by thousands of writers, editors and other news professionals. The present version of the code was adopted by the 1996 SPJ National Convention, after months of study and debate among the Society's members.

O'Reilly, father of still small children, disrespects high school students who are ready and eager to discuss topics of sex and drugs. They crave information and discussion, not "just say no" dogma. His anger at the adults involved stems from fear that kids will take any openness about sensitive issues as a green light to irresponsible behavior, when studies show the opposite. But he's playing to a repressed and strict-father audience who always wants to punish someone. Gotta give them a villain lest they start seeing them on their own.