When the Tea Party protesters were wreaking havoc at town hall meetings, Fox News provided full validation for their activism. But when a young female law student spoke out on behalf of women's reproductive rights, Fox News provided a platform for Fox pundits and their guests to smear her. Fox News advanced the popular right wing memes that Fluke is a libertine who wants free birth control and that she is an example of playing the victim - a role usually reserved, on Fox, for persecuted Christians. Perhaps the most venom came from Bill O'Reilly and his fellow defenders of the "pro-life" patriarchy which would deny women access to birth control and abortion while at the same time abolish the safety net for women who do give birth. And now that Ms. Fluke has been nominated for Time Magazine Person of the Year, the Fox boys are back in town with their patented vitriol. Last week, Dennis Miller and Bill O'Reilly didn't disappoint.
Back in September, during his weekly Factor appearance, Miller whined that Sandra Fluke was like the "whiny girl in Willa Wonka." Without noting that Fluke was speaking about the unfairness of the Georgetown health care policy that covers birth control for employees and not for students, Miller advanced that Fluke-wants-free-birth-for-herself, meme with her demand that "Hey, you pay for my diaphram."
Immediately after the election, Bill and Miller whined about how Obama was elected because those lazy minorities and women want free stuff. Bill, who is obsessed about the decline of the white, Christian, male power structure asked Miller if he "feared" for the country. Miller wasted no time in attacking Fluke. After saying that he liked the country the way it was (Ah, the halcyon days of back alley abortions!) and that "it's not going to be like that anymore," he added that "most graphic depiction of it is that single women in this country now, when they look up and they're looking for somebody to aspire to, it's somebody like Sandra Fluke."
Last week, during "Miller Time," Bill launched into what is not a patented, hysterical rant about how the "imploding" American tradition (Ah, the halcyon days of segregation and separate but equal) requires that he, Bill O'Reilly, save American society from itself. (Pope Bill says back to the kitchen, bitches). He then asked Miller's reaction to Fluke's Time nomination. Miller was off and running:
I think she's perfectly emblematic of modern women, and it's sad to say, but single women, that's what's been yielded out by the women's movement. I didn't see that coming. But it would appear helplessness, perpetually being caught in a stasis of a 1968 Virginia Slims ad in a magazine. She's "Moan of Arc." That's the way most women went in this election. I think she'll only agree to accept the cover if they agree to comp her subscription. Seems she's in that business."
O'Reilly asked Miller if he thought that most women want "hand-outs." Miller pontificated:
"I'm just going by that vote, Bill. I mean, it seems to me a lot of people have moved on by the vote. I heard it. The people have spoken. Single women, I think, went 60 percent for this guy. Sandra Fluke helped him do that. Am I to now run to the defense and say, "I guess that's not what single women want"? Billy, it's numbers. I don't fight with math."
That's right, Dennis. It's the numbers - numbers reflected by exit polling that showed the GOP's position on women's health issues likely cost them the presidency. Women are not going back to the days of second hand citizenship inasmuch as Bill O'Reilly and Dennis Miller wish that to be so. But here's the thing - If Bill O'Reilly's wife, wherever she may be living and whoever she is with, is on Bill's Fox News health care plan, she's now entitled to birth control with no co-payment per the Affordable Care Act. Now that's some irony, ya think!