Home Store In Memoriam Deborah Newsletter Forum Topics Blogfeed Blogroll Facebook MySpace Contact Us About

Only Fox's Bill O'Reilly could make David Duke look good

Reported by Chrish - February 26, 2005

Bill O'Reilly had David Duke on the Factor Feb 24 purportedly to discuss Ward Churchill and his controversial essay. I was quite surprised to see Duke come across as rational, intelligent, and tolerant. O'Reilly, on the other hand, was rude and unprofessional, angry, and ignorant. Some say that's par for the course.

The interview started out reasonably enough, BOR asking what the difference is between Duke and Churchill "stylistically".

Duke first protested BOR's introduction of him as former KKK grand high wizard, saying that was 30 years ago and he has since been in the Louisiana State Legislature. and and elected Republican official in LA. He went on to say he didn't really know much about Ward Churchill or his viewpoints, but the only way to learn about an individual is to allow his (her) viewpoints to be heard. He believes all viewpoints have a right to be heard; "I do believe in freedom of speech."

BOR: What about hate speech? This is where I come down and disagree with both you and Churchill. He misrepresents Churchill's work , interpreting it with his own spin ("guys that got killed in the WTC, little Eichmanns, if they were working in the capitalistic system, eh, (shrugs disdainfully) that's what happens to little Eichmanns") and compares it to Duke "you've called blacks primitive anaimals; you've denied the Holocaust happened."

Duke denies the primitive animals accusation and challenges BOR to go through his archives; much overtalking with BOR prevailing. It starts to heat up, with Bill cutting of Duke who says "let me answer the question." BOR says "I'm not debating the issue..." and Duke says well you are debating the issue with me so why don't you give me a chance to answer."

BOR says "I want to make this point." Both pointer fingers are jabbing now. He gives a hypothetical situation where Duke denies the Holocaust to someone whose grandpa died there and accuses Duke of hurting that person. Duke is meanwhile trying to deny that he denied the Holocaust. He tries to explain his contention that under Boleschevism Jews perpetuated crimes against Christians and O'Reilly cuts him off with "free speech has consequences".

BOR "Both you and Churchill, on opposite ends of the spectrum, (the pointers are clear off the screen by now) have caused personal pain to Americans, and I, sir, resent it." He has both hands up in the "talk to the hand" position now. "Now let's get on to another topic."

BOR: "You DID, and we researched this, (unlike the previous topic which was apparently just rumor and innuendo) go to colleges" and speak, just like Churchill. Interesting. How many did you go to, what was your fee, and what was the reaction?

Duke answers, 50 or 60, sometimes free, sometimes small fee. He recommends Bill go to his website, www.davidduke.com, and listen to the speeches there and not find hate speech. BOR insists "you cleaned it up" several times; Duke says it's his speeches from 30 years ago, 20 years ago; Bill accuses him again of "cleaning" them up. (Comment: Bill must think this is common practice, revising history, as in 1984) Bill says Duke made his rep attacking blacks, Jews, and Catholics and "it was wrong IMO."

Duke replied that the district he was elected from was 75% Catholic and he has never made an anti-Catholic statement in his life. Bill says it doesn't matter, but Duke says it matters to him because it is an inaccurate statement.

Bill is in full ugly mode now. Duke is trying to speak and Bill keeps saying "c'mon, c'mon" and "you, you, you", just making enough noise that Duke can't be understood. (I know, the terrific Marie Therese could have ungobbled all this but she's special.) BOR says (again, in case we forgot) "you were a grand high wizard in the KKK, and they were going the papists this, the papists that, c'mon"...

There is a jarring edit at this point.

Duke says, "Mr. O'Reilly, if you're going to try to attack me, why don't you try to be at least somewhat accurate."

BOR re-re-establishes the well-known fact that David Duke is a former grand wizard of the KKK, then from there tells Duke that the Klan is anti-Catholic "all day long". Duke says "no, sir" and O'Reilly says "yes, sir.' Duke, speaking slowly and clearly, then lays the bombshell, "Most of our members in Louisiana were in fact Cath-o-lics. Do you understand that?"
BOR: "I know what the Klan is; I've studied the Klan." Dismissing he says let's get back on track...

Duke insists "Thank god we have some freedom of speech, because you don't know what the Klan is, because you haven't heard the different points of view."
BOR: Yes I have.
Duke: You've got one image because you've gotten one side in your life.

Bill again misparaphrases (spins) Ward Churchill's comments and asks Duke if that is hate speech.

Duke says he doesn't know about hate, it is Churchill's opinion. He says when someone says things about people in Baghdad or Iraq people can call it hate speech because we denigrate them, and he has heard BOR say harsh things about extremist Muslims. Duke disagrees with Churchill but believes when one is in academia and has the opportunity to express himself, people have the right to make statements.
Churchill did say one thing Duke does agree with,that the attacks 9/11 didn't come out of thin air. We weren't attacked because they hate our democracy; that's not true. They attacked us in response to our foreign policies overseas.

BOR starts overtalking "policies they felt were wrong because of whatever craziness...you don't kill civilians because you don;t agree with policy...that's insane"...

meanwhile Duke is trying to be heard saying something about "criminal policies"...he agrees with BOR that the killing of civilians is wrong, 100%. But that's not what we're talking about...

BOR says, "that's what I'm talking about."

Duke makes a last point as the dismissal music starts up "We gotta start looking at our foreign policy. If we had minded our own business we wouldn't have had this tragedy." He plugs his website once more for viewers to see his point of view , "freedom of speech."

Comment: It is kind of surreal for me to be thinking that David Duke looks like a pretty intelligent rational guy. O'Reilly was such a mouthy bully, distorting pretty much everything and not letting the guest answer most questions without interruption and redirection.
When Duke started talking about US foreign policy perhaps being the root cause of the attacks of 9/11 Bill was determined to not let that possibility be explored or be treated as a serious alternative to the mantra "they hate our freedom/democracy." Bill can take comfort in the fact that most people are "too busy" to be bothered with such boring and complicated issues as self-governance. Most people (that I've discussed this with) acknowledge that we can't go on like this. There is a kernel of truth in Churchill's essay that must be brought to light and discussed by moral, educational, political, and economic leaders. It's not likely while the beneficiaries of the status quo control the conversations.

Marie Therese will be right back. I was going to buy her a drink in St. Louis - after one night of watching BOR, I think she needs her own bottle.

Post a comment

Remember Me?

We welcome your opinions and viewpoints. Comments must remain civil, on-topic and must not violate any copyright or other laws. We reserve the right to delete any comments we deem inappropriate or non-constructive to the discussion for any reason, and to block any commenter for repeated violations.

Your email address is required to post, but it will not be published on the site.