Bill O'Reilly is a product of 1950's authoritarian and patriarchal Catholicism which considered atheists right up there with Communists and "Hollywood Jews" as the ultimate threats to the faith. Perhaps that's why he feels that it is his sacred duty to confront atheists about their godless ways. We see this in his bogus "War on Christmas" which seems to be based on fear and hatred of imaginary atheists who are trying to not just eliminate Christmas - but eliminate Christianity which, for Bill and other revisionist historians, is the core of what we are in America and which, as we know, is not true. We also see this in Bill's frequent interviews with atheists which, in Bill's twisted mind, allow Bill to use his intellectual acumen and moral superiority to vanquish these sinners. Fresh from screaming that atheist David Silverman is a fascist for not wanting religious Christmas displays on public property, O'Reilly, last week, tried to use his superior intellect to lecture another atheist and ended up getting schooled!
Bill began his "controversy over spirituality" segment by telling his audience that "ever since George Washington, presidents have sworn on the bible that they will protect the country." He claimed that there were only two presidents who didn't use the bible but there is no proof that there was a bible from Washington's second inaugural to the inauguration of John Q Adams. There is also no proof of an inaugural bible used by Franklin Pierce and John Tyler. Cooledge didn't use a bible although it was close by. Bill reported that there is a "move" to remove the bible from the inauguration. He noted that President Obama would have his hand on two bibles, one from President Lincoln and the other having belonged to MLK, Jr.
He incredulously asked his guest, Andrew Seidel from the Freedom from Religion Foundation, if he wanted those bibles removed from the ceremony. Seidel said he preferred MLK's letter from the Birmingham jail which castigated those churches who mouth "pious irrelevancies." After O'Reilly pontificated about how Dr. King invoked God in all his speeches, Seidel informed him that "so help me God" isn't in the Constitutional wording of the oath. After O'Reilly claimed that Washington wanted this in the oath, Seidel told him that the first recorded instance of it was in 1816. Bill then claimed that Washington's inaugural address is "peppered with references to God." He repeated the word "peppered." I don't know what speech O'Reilly read but Washington's Inaugural Speech has JUST TWO REFERENCES TO GOD as the "benign parent of the human race" and the "almighty being." So "peppered?" - not so much!
Bill asked why the speech was "peppered" with references to God and proclaimed "it was all over the place." He patronizingly answered his own question by claiming that the Declaration of Independence said that our rights come from God. Bill started to get agitated when Siedel told him that the Declaration isn't the founding document and the Constitution is a secular document with no mention of God. Given that Bill was lying about Washington, his hubristic claim, that Seidel "doesn't know his history and I do," was laughable. He continued his bizarro history about how the Declaration "set up the Constitution." When Siedel told him it was a statement of independence, O'Reilly shouted "it set up the Constitution."
Bill, with no basis in fact, that the "overwhelming majority of Americans" would be furious if the bible were taken out of the inauguration. When Seidel told him that a substantial number of Americans are not religious, O'Reilly claimed that even those people don't want the bible to be "booted" from the ceremony. With no actual data, Bill proclaimed that "the folks want the ceremony to include the bible." After Seidel spoke about how the Bill of Rights protects us from the "tyranny of the majority," religion derives its morality from humanity, and the bible teaches that people are property, Pope Bill said that "when he gets to heaven" Seidel can argue with Washington and Dr. King. Bill presumed that he too is going to heaven because he "will love to see that debate."
The Vatican made me do it!
Somewhere a high school student with a ‘D’ in History class is laughing at you.