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The Passion of the O’Reilly

From what I’ve heard, erstwhile student Senate opportunist member Dallas Brown will make an appearance on the O’Reilly Factor tomorrow. One should expect mucho bellyaching, handwringing, and harrumphing about the state of the Incidental Fee and the impotence of our so-called student leaders (except for Brown, who is clearly as potent as Long Dong Silver, or Boner Jesus for that matter). One should not expect Brown to make the observation that “you can be a honky and still be hung like a donkey,” which was my first impression upon seeing Don Goldman’s rather flattering portrayal of Jesus’ giant, pink manhood. That is, unless Brown is drunk or high.

Nevermind. I’m sure the program will be entertaining, as it should feature footage from last week’s dramatic student Senate debacle. My prediction: O’Reilly will call David Goward a coward six or seven million times. This is a very conservative estimate.

For those who missed the original telecast, Media Matters has posted it on its website, alongside its reaction to O’Reilly’s arguments. Early in its critique of O’Reilly, Media Matters gets it right: The Insurgent is not an “official” student newspaper, nor does the administration or any other governing body have control over its content. Truly well put, Media Matters. But a few paragraphs later, the argument turns to the ol’ rhetorical bodyslam: hypocrisy. To the good folks at Media Matters, Bill O’Reilly is a hypocrite because he is criticizing the Insurgent for their Jesus cartoons but not us for our reprinting of the Mohammed cartoons.

“On the May 17 edition of The O’Reilly Factor, O’Reilly hosted Commentator editor Tyler Graf, who defended the Insurgent‘s right to publish the Jesus cartoons. O’Reilly disagreed, but nevertheless declared the Commentator to be a “responsible” paper, and the Insurgent to be “irresponsible.” At no point during the interview did O’Reilly note the Commentator‘s decision to publish the Mohammed cartoons.”

First of all, this argument misrepresents the debate. This is not a debate over our decision to re-print the Jyllands-Posten cartoons. The reason why there is no debate speaks to care and thought we put into that editorial; we were truly concerned about how it would be interpreted on campus. We took so much care, in fact, that we didn’t do a mass issue mailing to the dorms, out of respect for any Muslim students who might reside there. Thus, the logic of this paragraph baffles me.

I’m not going to claim that O’Reilly knew what he was talking about — that he has been reading us for several years and has our back issues stacked under his desk; more than likely, he simply said the first thing that popped into his head. He has a penchant for that.

The people at Media Matters seem to be conflating an act (printing potentially offensive cartoons) with irresponsibility. Are we guilty of the same offense as the Insurgent? Must a student publication refrain from tackling controversial issues? Hardly.

The circumstances surrounding the printing of the two series of cartoons couldn’t have been more different: we did it to criticize the mainstream media and political figures for their inability to properly address the issue and to edify the public (the ODE’s tepid tackling of the issue was the journalistic equivalent of a Godfrey Ho movie) The Insurgent, on the other hand, did it to piss off Christians. Mission accomplished, I suppose.

Not to give O’Reilly too much credit, but his calling us responsible was accurate. However, tomorrow he will call Brown responsible, which will be inaccurate. Yet the world will keep on turning.

  1. Tyler says:

    I should have pulled a Drudge and used the all-purpose “Developing…” to end that portion of my post.

  2. Matt P. says:

    Thank god.

  3. Miles Rost says:


  4. Meghann says:

    So was he on?

  5. Niedermeyer says:

    Well, at least O’Reilly is saving us the inevitable “H-word” round of drinking by changing the name of his show to “The teensy little bit of Spin Zone”

  6. Matt P. says:

    He’s using the Emerald’s online poll, one of those things that can only sample people who choose to participate: namely, people who have an axe to grind about it. If scientifically done, they would probably find way more people who simply don’t care (only 7% on the poll referenced).

    He’s also adding the number of people who said that “it can’t be shut down, but could be condemned by Frohnmayer” to the number of people who said “fire Frohnmayer,” and calling that 60% of people who support his position. The problem with this is it misrepresents the response to the poll, which is not scientific or representative anyway.

  7. de lancie says:

    This is on his website though…I don’t recall seeing a poll like this. And $20,000 a year. where is he getting his facts. what fool is feeding him information. can someone enlighten me?

    Talking Points Memo
    A miracle in Oregon?
    “Earlier this week I said I was praying for a miracle that one American newspaper would take my side in the University of Oregon controversy, where a radical student publication printed vile illustrations of Jesus. That hate speech violates academic standards, in my opinion, and the publication should be denied college funding. I also said university President Dave Frohnmayer should be fired for poor judgment and lax leadership. I didn’t get the miracle I asked for, but something even more miraculous has happened. In a poll sponsored by the student newspaper, 38% said ‘Bill O’Reilly is right, fire Frohnmayer.’ And 22% said the paper should be condemned. So 60% of those who voted understand that hate speech is irresponsible. The Jesus pictures are clearly obscene and designed to injure Christians. Nobody in their right mind thinks the University of Oregon would allow a KKK student-run newspaper to receive student funding, but they will kick $20,000 a year to a Marxist anti-Christian hate sheet. That’s unacceptable at a publicly funded university. Alumni should stand up the way students have and withhold donations until something is done. This whole thing is miraculous to me – the students are much smarter than the faculty, and much braver as well.”

  8. Bryan says:

    There isn’t any mention of a Dallas Brown appearance tonight on the O’Reilly Factor website.

  9. de lancie says:

    Just so that you all aren’t disappointed come 5pm…Dallas has a softball game today and I am almost positive he will not be making an appearance on O’Reilly. I say almost b/c I would not want to make any absolute statements…I would rather be cautious than wrong…I would actually just like to not look like a fool.

  10. Ian says:

    I’ll be there. And btw- great post.

  11. Niedermeyer says:

    Count me in

  12. Bryan says:

    Should we watch this circus at Rennie’s?

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