It was bad enough that Bill O’Reilly blamed President Barack Obama for a surge in opioid drug overdose deaths. But for extra, hate-mongering credit, O’Reilly threw in “the racial thing,” too.
O’Reilly’s thesis was that Obama is too permissive toward drug dealers and drug use. In a discussion with a somewhat skeptical Charles Krauthammer, O’Reilly seemed to grow frustrated when his guest didn’t jump on the blame-Obama-first (racial) bandwagon.
“As much as I would like to lay every social ill in the country at the feet of Barack Obama,” Krauthammer said, presumably joking at least somewhat. More seriously, he thought Obama’s fault in the situation “more an act of omission” than commission.
Krauthammer said Obama merely reflects “the zeitgeist,” that “drugs are a personal choice” that should be de-stigmatized.
In rebuttal, O’Reilly suggested that part of the problem is that Obama is too sympathetic to blacks:
O’REILLY: Here’s the deal. President Obama has made it a cause to go out and try to convince Americans that number one, selling heroin’s not a violent crime. That’s insane to me. Because I have seen what heroin does to people. All right? And number two, he does this because he believes that the justice system is unfair to black heroin dealers, see? Because more of them are arrested. The black heroin dealers and the crack dealers who are out on the streets, who are actually pedaling on the streets and are easier to arrest. He sees this as a racial thing. So he has tied the racial thing in to his permissive attitude about narcotics and what do we have? An explosion, an explosion of heroin use. Kids wanting to try it thinking it’s cool. And that comes from the top. The leadership of this country so it is his fault. [Transcript via Media Matters, with added emphasis.]
Watch O’Reilly grow more exercised as the discussion goes along until he is nearly shouting at the end with suggestions that Obama sent coded messages that he’s totally down with hard drug use for everyone. It’s from the December 12, 2016 The O’Reilly Factor, via Media Matters.
O’Reilly wouldn’t give two sh!+$ if the “epidemic” was primarily affecting the Black community. As noted with his reference to “crack dealers”" The whole “crack” epidemic in the 1980s was a manufactured problem but only because white kids were starting to do crack, which is no more potent than powder cocaine; but because crack was sold for a few bucks compared to powdered coke which sold for far more money. Of course, the powder could be cut with things like baking soda and flour, which lessened the potency, while crack couldn’t be; the only thing that could replace crack would be something like rock candy which didn’t burn like crack. And, selling crack earned harsher sentences than selling the powder form.