Friday, September 28, 2007

Media Matters for America, September 27, 2007

O'Reilly claimed Media Matters "distorted" his "discussion on race," but never aired the discussion on his TV show

During the September 26 edition of his Fox News show, The O'Reilly Factor, responding to criticism of his controversial September 19 remarks on his radio show about his visit to Sylvia's restaurant in Harlem, Bill O'Reilly asserted that "the far-left smear website Media Matters distorted a very positive discussion on race and accused me of racism." During three segments discussing the controversy, however, O'Reilly aired no audio from the September 19 edition of his radio show. In its original item documenting O'Reilly's comments, Media Matters for America provided the transcript and audio of his remarks. Read more

Wash. Post's Robinson on O'Reilly: "[I]t was, at best, a casually racist remark"

During the September 26 edition of MSNBC's Countdown with Keith Olbermann, discussing Fox News host Bill O'Reilly's controversial September 19 remarks about his visit to Sylvia's restaurant in Harlem, Washington Post columnist Eugene Robinson said of O'Reilly's comment: "[I]t was, at best, a casually racist remark." Robinson also said: "[W]hat really ticks me off is that when you say that, when you point that out, you know, immediately you get charged by O'Reilly and cohorts with, you know, you're the thought police, you're the thought Gestapo, you're the word Nazis, you're interfering with free speech, and somehow cutting off an honest debate about race. Well, tell me what in the year 2007 is debatable about whether or not black people can use a knife and fork. I don't think that's debatable at this point." Read more

On CNN, Peterson called NAACP "a hate group"

Discussing the Jena Six controversy, CNN host Kyra Phillips said, "Let's talk about the reality of the hate groups that are in that area [Jena, Louisiana] and the reality of a mind-set that does exist." In response, conservative commentator Rev. Jesse Lee Peterson asserted: "I also agree that there are hate groups all around the country. There are skinheads, KKK, and the NAACP. The NAACP is a hate group as well." Read more

On her blog, Bruce attacked "the Soros Media Gestapo, Media Matters"

On her blog, radio host Tammy Bruce asserted that Fox News host Bill O'Reilly has been under "increasing attacks ... by the [George] Soros Media Gestapo, Media Matters. Once again, the left, via MM, has resorted to their default position in attempting to demonizing [sic] someone, specifically by calling O'Reilly a racist." Bruce further asserted, "The left, Soros, and his political and media thugs, cannot withstand independent voices and they will work overtime to silence them. Let's make sure these new gestapos fail." In fact, Soros has never given money to Media Matters, either directly or through another organization. Read more

O'Reilly claimed Media Matters had "personally attacked" him, but failed to offer any examples

On The O'Reilly Factor, Bill O'Reilly repeatedly claimed that "Media Matters has personally attacked me 109 times," but he did not offer a single example of Media Matters' alleged personal attacks. In fact, Media Matters has posted more than 125 items documenting statements by O'Reilly during the period in question, including full transcripts of his comments with corresponding audio or video. Read more

O'Reilly: "[I]f I could strangle these people and not go to hell and get executed ... I would -- but I can't."

On the September 27 edition of his nationally syndicated radio show, while discussing media coverage of his recent controversial comments about race, Fox News host Bill O'Reilly asserted: "These people aren't getting away with this. I'm going to go right where they live. Every corrupt media person in this country is on notice, right now. I'm coming after you." He went on to warn: "You smear somebody and you can't back it up, you're gonna get it. ... You go after somebody's family, you go after them and smear them with defamation that you can't back up, I'm coming to your house. I'm coming to your house.

You'll have a camera up your nose. OK?" Later during the program, O'Reilly stated that newspapers such as The New York Times and the New York Daily News, "ran up to Harlem and they fed black Americans bogus quotes from Media Matters." Continuing, he said, "Now, the black Americans up there, they didn't listen to The Radio Factor. They didn't know this was coming from Media Matters. ... So, the reporter ... feeds them the quote, and of course they say bad things about me." O'Reilly called these newspapers' actions "the height of racism."

Apparently referring to the media who he said "ran up to Harlem and ... fed black Americans bogus quotes from Media Matters," O'Reilly added, "[I]f I could strangle these people and not go to hell and get executed ... I would -- but I can't. ... All I can do is expose them. And I will." Read more

Fox's Gibson claimed "George Soros is after Bill O'Reilly ... over some benign remarks"

Fox News' John Gibson called the controversy over Bill O'Reilly's recent remarks a "fabricated flap over some benign remarks Bill made on his radio show, but it has been turned on its ear by George Soros' Media Matters," which is "dedicated to discrediting conservatives and folks like Bill" through "the purposeful misinterpretation of one's words." Gibson did not support his claim that Media Matters "misinterpret[ed]" O'Reilly's words; moreover, Soros has never given money to Media Matters. Read more

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