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Quote of the Day
Tuesday, September 06, 2005
Oh Really, O'Reilly?
I had another bout with insomnia last night, and went downstairs to the family room to watch some television as I was too bleary-eyed to read. I was flipping through channels when I saw the face of Bill O'Reilly on "The O'Reilly Factor," and I just had to stop and listen -- it's the same thing that happens when I see Mariah Carey or Sandra Bullock on television: all three individuals annoy me to no end, and like stopping to gawk at a car accident, I have to watch.
I thought I could forget his drivel, but it's been gnawing at me all day long. Here's the gist of his "talking points," on the topic of the plight of African-Americans suffering after Hurricane Katrina:
We're not seeing images of just black people being neglected in New Orleans -- they're poor. Thus, this is not about race, it's about class.
Historically, poor people have not been able to rely on government to lift them out of their misery. Poor people today should not expect that the government will help them now.
Poverty is an invitation for danger. If you are poor, there is a high probability that bad things will happen to you.
Poor people usually lack education. If poor people were really interested in breaking out of the cycle of poverty, they would go to school. Once they had an education, bad and dangerous things would stop happening, and less blame would be put on the government for these bad and dangerous things.
The upshot: yes, it's bad that so many poor people are suffering after Katrina, but it's not the government's place to help everyone. (I believe his actual words were "large government bureaucracy.) So, poor people (again, not "black" people), you're on your own.
I know there are people who take Bill O'Reilly very seriously, and that makes me almost physically ill. How long will our country be able to sustain this? We are surely living in a house divided and it cannot stand forever -- especially not when the floor is underwater and sinking into the mud.