Wednesday, May 14, 2008

Its Bill Oreilly's Lynching Party, starring Bill Oreilly

Star Jones Reynolds Statement on Bill OReilly

Bill O'Reilly said:

'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 is a bad country or

a flawed nation, whatever - then that's legit. We'll track it down.'

Star said:

'I'm sick to death of people like Fox News host, Bill O'Reilly,

and his ilk thinking that he can use a racial slur against a black woman

who could be the next First Lady of the United States, give a half-assed

apology and not be taken to task and called on his crap

What the hell? If it's 'legit,' you're going to 'track it down?'

And then what do you plan to do? How dare this white man with a

microphone and the trust of the public think that in 2008, he can still

put the words 'lynch and party' together in the same sentence with

reference to a black woman; in this case, Michelle Obama? I don't care

how you 'spin it' in the 'no spin zone,' that statement in and of itself

is racist, unacceptable and inappropriate on every level.

O'Reilly claims his comments were taken out of context. Please

don't insult my intelligence while you're insulting me. I've read the

comments and heard them delivered in O'Reilly's own voice; and there is

no right context that exists. So, his insincere apology and

'out-of-context' excuse is not going to cut it with me.

And just so we're clear, this has nothing to do with the 2008

presidential election, me being a Democrat, him claiming to be

Independent while talking Republican, the liberal media or a

conservative point of view. To the contrary, this is about crossing a

line in the sand that needs to be drawn based on history, dignity, taste

and truth.

Bill, I'm not sure of where you come from, but let me tell you

what the phrase 'lynching party' conjures up to me, a black woman born

in North Carolina . Those words depict the image of a group of white men

who are angry with the state of the own lives getting together, drinking

more than they need to drink, lamenting how some black person has moved

forward (usually ahead of them in stature or dignity), and had the

audacity to think that they are equal. These same men for years, instead

of looking at what changes, should and could make in their own lives

that might remove that bitterness born of perceived privilege, these

white men take all of that resentment and anger and decide to get

together and drag the closest black person near them to their death by

hanging them from a tree - usually after violent beating, torturing and

violating their human dignity Check your history books, because you

don't need a masters or a law degree from Harvard to know that is what

constitutes a 'lynching party'

Imagine, Michelle and Barack Obama having the audacity to think

that they have the right to the American dream, hopes, and ideals.

O'Reilly must think to himself: how dare they have the arrogance to

think they can stand in a front of this nation, challenge the status quo

and express the frustration of millions? When this happens, the first

thing that comes to mind for O'Reilly and people like him is: 'it's time

for a party.'

Not so fast...don't order the rope just yet.

Would O'Reilly ever in a million years use this phrase with

reference to Elizabeth Edwards, Cindy McCain or Judi Nathan? I mean, in

all of the statements and criticisms that were made about Judi Nathan,

the one-time mistress turned missus, of former presidential candidate

Rudy Giuliani, I never heard any talk of forming a lynch party because

of something she said or did.

So why is it that when you're referring to someone who's

African-American you must dig to a historical place of pain, agony and

death to symbolize your feelings? Lynching is not a joke to off-handedly

throw around and it is not a metaphor that has a place in political

commentary; provocative or otherwise. I admit that I come from a place

of personal outrage here having buried my 90 year-old grandfather last

year. This proud, amazing African-American man raised his family and

lived through the time when he had to use separate water fountains, ride

in the back of a bus, take his wife on a date to the 'colored section'

of a movie theater, and avert his eyes when a white woman walked down

the street for fear of what a white man and his cronies might do if they

felt the urge to 'party'; don't tell me that the phrase you chose, Mr.

O'Reilly, was taken out of context.

To add insult to injury, O'Reilly tried to 'clarify' his

statements, by using the excuse that his comments were reminiscent of

Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas' use of the term 'high-tech

lynching' during his confirmation hearing. I reject that analogy. You

see Justice Thomas did mean to bring up the image of lynching in its

racist context. He was saying that politics and the media were using a

new technology to do to him what had been done to black men for many

years -- hang him. Regardless of if you agreed with Justice Thomas'

premise or not, if in fact -- Bill O'Reilly was referencing it -- the

context becomes even clearer.

What annoys me more than anything is that I get the feeling

that one of the reasons Bill O'Reilly made this statement, thinking he

could get away with it in the first place, and then followed it up with

a lame apology in a half-hearted attempt to smooth any ruffled feathers,

is because he doesn't think that black women will come out and go after

him when he goes after us. Well, he's dead wrong. Be clear Bill

O'Reilly: there will be no lynch party for that black woman. And this

black woman assures you that if you come for her, you come for all of

-- Star Jones Reynolds

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