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On Fox News, Not All Petitions Are Created Equal

Reported by Priscilla - March 26, 2009 -

Prior to Bill O’Reilly’s speaking engagement at an organization that advocates on behalf of rape victims, there was an on-line petition circulated which requested that the It Happened To Alexa Foundation consider withdrawing its invitation to Bill O’Reilly to speak at a fund raiser. People (many of them victims of sexual abuse/assault, their families, and those that worked with and for them) were outraged that Bill O’Reilly, who had never apologized for insensitive and inappropriate comments regarding a victim of a rape/murder and another victim of kidnapping/rape, would speak before a group that provides assistance for those whose lives have been brutalized by sexual violence. For their concern, these people who voiced their opinion, an opinion based on heartfelt convictions, were called "evil" and “far left loons.” There are two petitions being circulated by conservatives – one from a pro-Iraq war group and the other by Catholic/Christian conservatives. No problem for the Fox News “Grapevine” which reported on this activism on Tuesday night (March 24th). Do you think that O’Reilly will say that these folks are “evil loons?"

According to Baier, “thousands of service men and women are upset” that John Murtha received the US Navy’s “Distinguished Service Award.” Because of this, Gabe Ledeen from Vets for Freedom (a group with ties to the neo con community) has started an online petition demanding that the award be rescinded if Murtha doesn’t apologize for his comments, regarding the conduct of Marines in Haditha, which the group considers slanderous and which “undermined” the efforts of those fighting in Iraq. One wonders if Bill O’Reilly, who never served in the military, would consider this an “attack” on a decorated Vietnam veteran.

As reported by “Grapevine,” “another online petition is gaining even more steam” with *88,000 people signing on to a petition which protests Barack Obama’s scheduled commencement address at the University of Notre Dame. These folks are angry because of Obama’s position on abortion and stem cell research which, they feel, is contrary to the teaching of the Catholic Church. Bret Bair cited a local Catholic bishop who won’t be attending; but that “University officials say the criticism is nothing beyond what they expected.” The chyron read “on moral grounds.” As we have seen, Bill O'Reilly disregards the “moral grounds” of those who signed the Alexa petition. One assumes that Bill O’Reilly, as a staunch Catholic, would not consider this as an attack on the university; but rather, agree in full.

Comment: Would Bill O’Reilly refer to these petition signers as “loons?” Somehow, I don’t think so and inasmuch as I wouldn’t sign on to either, I don’t begrudge those who do as they are doing it from a sense of heartfelt convictions. But using the good and evil O’Reilly worldview, I guess that there are good petitions and bad ones. If they’re done by conservatives, Fox News thinks they are just fine; but if they’re directed towards Fox News personalities, you won’t hear about them on the “Grapevine.”

*The Chicago Tribune reports that the Cardinal Newman Society claims only 28,000 signatures. Baier also didn’t report that the University is not rescinding its invitation.