In Tuesday’s “Talking Points Memo” (O’Reilly Factor, 2/18/14), Fox News host Bill O’Reilly was talking about NSA spying when he said:
One side note: the far left doesn’t really care if we’re attacked because they believe the USA is the root cause of worldwide terrorism. So to them, we’re just getting what we deserve.
O’Reilly’s slur on the left recalled for me when MSNBC was hounded into apologizing for a tweet suggesting that the right would frown on a Super Bowl cereal commercial featuring a biracial family. MSNBC‘s offending tweet: “Maybe the rightwing will hate it, but everyone else will go awww: the adorable new #Cheerios ad w/ biracial family.”
Along with its apology, MSNBC reportedly fired the person responsible for the tweet, but that didn’t quell the anger at the cable channel. Among the outraged was…Bill O’Reilly, who fumed (O’Reilly Factor, 1/30/14):
Now for a cable news network to officially sanction something like that is simply deplorable. And now, of course, MSNBC has apologized saying, quote, “Earlier this account tweeted an offensive line about the Cheerios ad. We deeply regret it. It does not reflect the position of MSNBC.” But as we all know it happens almost every week over at that place. They’re constantly apologizing for personal and vicious attacks.
Says the guy who has fantasized about beheading a journalist he thought had crossed him (FAIR Blog, 11/10/10), referred to Mexican immigrants as “wetbacks” and asked, “Will African-Americans break away from the pack thinking and reject immorality?” (Extra!, 6/03).
Fox‘s supposedly evenhanded media critic Howard Kurtz (Media Buzz, 2/2/14) was also outraged:
In our “Press Picks,” this is so far over the line that it’s incomprehensible. MSNBC spewed pure hatred with a tweet about a Super Bowl cereal ad featuring a racially mixed family.
Generalizing that right-wingers have a problem with mixed-race families might be inaccurate, but I’m not sure how it qualifies as spewing “pure hatred.” (In polls, most liberals and conservatives both say they approve of black/white intermarriage, but those who don’t approve are much more likely to be conservative than liberal–Daily Kos, 11/12/13.)
At any rate, it tells you a lot about our media and society that no one even expects O’Reilly to apologize for his slur of the left. And yet one could have predicted MSNBC‘s apology immediately upon seeing the offending tweet.