Megyn Kelly concluded the second of her two-part series of interviews with “unrepentant terrorist” Bill Ayers last night. The former 60s radical did a decent enough job holding his own against Kelly’s predictable theatrics, such as “What would it take to make you bomb this country again?” (video after the jump) and “You sound like – with respect – Osama bin Laden” from the previous night. But Ayers was in a great position to call her out and throw a spotlight on Fox tactics – which one could argue have also led to death and destruction – and for reasons unfathomable to this writer, did not.
Whatever you think of Ayers’ 60’s-radical past, not even Kelly could come up with any evidence that he hasn’t been an upstanding citizen since turning himself in to authorities in 1980. But while Kelly grandstanded with questions clearly designed to endear her with conservatives rather than to elicit information, Ayers responded with wonky answers about the Vietnam War designed to justify his 40-year old actions.
For example, Kelly asked, “Do you understand, professor, that what began for your group as outrage over mass killings then turned into a plan to kill hundreds of Americans. Did you not cede the moral high ground?”
Ayers replied, “Oh, absolutely, but that was true for a few people and it was one of the things we split on.” Then, after an edit, Ayers was seen saying, “But the idea that this is the moral equivalent of 6,000 people a week being killed strikes me as nuts. We were destroying property and in the course of the discussion some people thought we should go much further. But we didn’t.”
Putting aside the substance of Ayers’ jusitification, the response looks stuck in the 60s without any consideration of the thousands of people that have been killed in, say, the Iraq war, based upon lies told in the Bush/Cheney administration. It was a war that Fox News cheerleaded . Why would a guy willing to commit crimes to stop the Vietnam War pass up the opportunity to confront Fox on the air about its role in promoting the Iraq war? Or clamoring for a new war in Iran? Or any of Fox's other anti-life items on its right-wing agenda, such as opposing ObamaCare, food stamps, welfare and climate change?
The fact of the matter is, as the "Outfoxed" documentary has irrefutably exposed, that Fox News has worked hand-in-hand with Republicans to promote their agenda with blatant propaganda. Why didn’t Ayers use what he almost certainly knew would be a huge platform to combat that?
Another example: Kelly asked about a police officer victim of Ayers’ group. She said, “The 44 year-old father of two and husband was killed when a bomb went off at his police station and eight other police officers were injured in that blast. Now, your wife, Bernardine Dohrn, has been accused of that crime. Do you deny it?”
“Absolutely deny it,” Ayers said. “Nothing to do with it.” But he did not go on offense and challenge Kelly over where she got her (mis)information nor for bringing up a presumably baseless charge for the sake of scoring points in her political theater. Instead, he cooperatively accepted the false premise that he was there for a reasoned discussion while she showboated throughout.
Second, Ayers is, to put it politely, a putz. My guess is he agreed to the interview out of what he no doubt considers a puckish sense of humor and a great self regard for contrarianism.
And may I say, like Jack Coglin below, I consider Ayers to be a despicable character from top to bottom. He turned himself in out of cowardice, frankly, and hasn’t renounced anything he did or said in the ’60s and ’70s, in fact has doubled down on it.
I suspect he’s a sociopath, and I’ve long been shocked that anybody would gift him with the respectability of a position in an academic institution, never mind a role in the politics of even a portion of Chicago.
I was a very active member of the anti-war left in the ’60s and ’70s, and Bill Ayers and Weather Underground were absolute anathema to the movement, even to the dread SDS. Screw him. He and his buddies gave very powerful ammunition to those who knocked themselves out to discredit the anti-war movement as a whole.
Answer: Because Fux Noise never tires of falsely spewing out that Ayers and our President are BFFs.