O’Reilly: Context is Everything

That’s Bill O’Reilly’s late apology for his lynching remarks:

O’Reilly’s exact words:

“While talking to a radio caller, I said there should be no lynching in the case, that comment off Clarence Thomas saying he was the victim of a high tech lynching (he said that on 60 Minutes, you may remember). I’m sorry if my statement offended anybody. That, of course, was not the intention. Context is everything.”

What context could possibly make this look good?

finally, the apology: on his show last night, Bill O’Reilly apologized for saying, “I don’t want to go on a lynching party against Michelle Obama unless there’s evidence.”

Let’s use the magic of blogging technology to find out! First, the full quote:

“I don’t want to go on a lynching party against Michelle Obama unless there’s evidence, hard facts, that say this is how the woman really feels. If that’s how she really feels — that America is a bad country or a flawed nation, whatever — then that’s legit. We’ll track it down.”

(note: context is utterly made up from this point onwards)

Hmmm. That still seems kinda racist Billo. Let’s try again:

Billo: Lynching was great for our system of Justice, only problem was a lack of evidence. You see, we needed a trial first, then the lynching. The dixie’s just got the order out of whack, that’s all. I don’t want to go on a lynching party against Michelle Obama unless there’s evidence, hard facts, that say this is how the woman really feels. So we have a trial for “unpatriotic speech”, and then an execution if she is found guilty.

Guest: By a jury of her peers?

Billo: Hell no. A jury of white Christian male media pundits.

Ok ok. How about:

Billo: Lynching is a metaphor, see, for killing a person’s respectability, their reputation. Dig? It’s all about perception man. I don’t want to go on a lynching party against Michelle Obama unless there’s evidence, hard facts, that say this is how the woman really feels. Then see, why should we like, listen to her?

Guest: Could that tact possibly backfire on you Bill?

Billo: Cut his mike!

There’s just gotta be some context that clears Bill O’Reilly’s good name. Golly gee wilikers, I’ve got it!

Billo: Given the disturbing amount of white supremacist activity aimed at Obama’s run for office, using language that applies that bigotry and hatred to the candidate is unforgivable. The media ought to be on the lookout for such perversions and “mistakes” made by high profile pundits, who are actually fueling the fire of extremists so afraid of Democracy they’d happily resort to the language and actions of fascism. How would your recognize this kind of attack? It could, for example, be couched as a defense of the intended victim, as follows: I don’t want to go on a lynching party against Michelle Obama unless there’s evidence, hard facts, that say this is how the woman really feels. See? See how that seems like I’m defending Mrs. Obama, when I’m actually engaging in wink-nod racism and eliminationism?

Guest: Shit, that’s clever!

Billo: Exactly. Oh God…. What if the liberal media take my media criticism of racist rhetoric out of context? My hard won reputation as a serious critic and unbiased, hard nosed opinion maker would be ruined!

And that must be what happened.

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