Get Off it Bill O'Reilly

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Get Off it Bill O'Reilly

Cindy Sheehan

A recent Harris Poll indicated that only 22% of Americans support George's war of terror. I suspect that the less than one-fourth of our country who are still in favor of the hopeless mess BushCo has tragically involved the USA in get all of their "news" from Fox News.

I have mostly kept silent about Fox and their role as co-conspirators with the Bush Regime because I believe that the organization is too ridiculous to even waste ink or breath on. MSNBC, CNN and the networks are not much better, but they are not as openly pro-war or pro-BushCo as Fox. There are also fabulous internet sites (Media Matters and Sweet Jesus I Hate Bill O'Reilly) that do a great job of pointing out the errors and outright lies of Fox News. Robert Greenwald's Outfoxed and Al Frankens' Lies and the Lying Liars Who Tell Them are great commentaries on the 'fair and balanced" network. O'Reilly is regularly Keith Olbermann's "Worst Person in the World" for his hateful and idiotic rhetoric.

I don't get a chance to watch TV very often, and when I do get a chance, I can give an almost 100% guarantee that I am not watching Fox News. When I broke my vow to never do Fox and went on Sean Hannity's show, he was amazed to find out that I never watch his program and wasn't nearly as pre-occupied with him as he seems to be with me. I hear things through the grapevine, but as my mom always said, I "consider the source."

However, saying all that, I have had enough of Bill O'Reilly's obsession with me and his unfair and unbalanced program. I almost wrote a piece called, "Oh Really, O'Reilly, " when the Bush Mob mouthpiece was on the David Letterman show and when Letterman stuck up for me, Bill said: "No one goes on my show and calls terrorists 'freedom fighters." He is one slimy operator because I am sure what he said was one goes on his show and calls terrorists "freedom fighters," but the statement is so misleading because it leads one to believe that I have ever been on his show and have called terrorists "freedom fighters."

The only time I have watched O'Reilly's show was recently when my dear friend Col. Ann Wright, US Army, Ret. was on the program. She was ostensibly on to comment about the Geneva Conventions regarding prisoners of war during the time when Iran was holding some British Marines as prisoners. O'Reilly turned it into brouhaha about Ann being an "America hater." When Ann saliently pointed out the fact that she had served her country in the U.S. Army for 29 years and asked O'Reilly how many years he served, he had her mike cut. After that episode, I went back to working on my computer and a few minutes later O'Reilly was talking about me and how I had the "big money" of George Soros behind me and that's why he had to do his best to "expose" me every chance he gets. At that point, I looked up at my assistant who was sitting next to me and told her to get George Soros on the horn and tell him that his "big money" was about three years late and we really could use the funds. First of all, I don't know George Soros and secondly, what business is it of O'Reilly's what Soros does with his money? According to O'Reilly, George Soros funds every politician, political cause and wields huge influence over us. In my experience and travels I have never met one person who was reaping the fabled rewards of a Soros association!

So far, I have ignored this and stayed above the Fox news defamation of my character. It would not take a moral giant the equivalent of a Mother Teresa to stay above Fox News. They have no conscious or credibility. I can't think of many people lower than Fox News, their employees and frequent neo-con contributors as Michelle Malkin, Ann Coulter, William Kristol, etc. However when I recently received an email from a person with the email address of "G.I. Joe" who claimed to be an Iraq war vet accusing me of calling terrorists "freedom fighters" because he had just heard it on the "news," was when I decided The O'Reilly Factor had to go. I know for a fact the evening G.I. Joe wrote me, O'Reilly brought that old lie back up. He can't think of anything new and he can't defend an indefensible criminal regime, so he has to rehash old lies and character assassinations of me and other "liberals" to keep his program afloat. I answered the soldier and explained carefully to him the distinction between a "terrorist" and an occupied person in a sovereign country who is fighting for his/her freedom from an oppressive foreign country. I tried to get G.I Joe to recall his lessons about the American Revolution when our founding fathers and mothers did the same thing. I mourn that G.I. Joe watches Fox News and is so abysmally misinformed and immorally manipulated.

The person who isn't misinformed though, is Mr. Bill O'Reilly. If he had a conscious, he should be ashamed of leading 22% of this country astray. The Jesus of Fox News thinks it is okay to kill innocent people for profit, but my Jesus said: "woe to he that causes one of the little ones to stumble. It would be better for that person to tie a millstone around his neck and be sunk in the depth of the sea." (Mt 18:6) O'Reilly and the rest of the bad shepherds at Fox News are thankfully seeing their flock decline, but they are abrogating their responsibility to inform their viewers properly and are making a mockery out of objective reporting.

There was a successful campaign led against BushCo and war critic, Don Imus, waged through his advertisers. He was taken off the air and I say it's about time that grass roots progressives pull the plug on Fox News beginning with the hate-filled rhetoric of Bill O'Reilly.

It is not because of his public libel of me, I have often found his weird attraction to me a little humorous and very sad, but because of G.I. Joe, I am calling for a boycott of every sponsor of Bill O'Reilly's show. When his empty spin zone is shut down, hopefully the rest of the purveyors of Bush propaganda will get the message.

We voters, activists, and grass roots peace and justice workers, are in the considerable majority and we are also consumers. It's about time we used the power of OUR purse strings to hold the "vast wasteland" of Fox News accountable. Then maybe, just maybe, we can get information from our mainstream news sources and not right-wing infotainment. This is something fairly easy to do, and besides a letter to Fox News telling them why you are not supporting O'Reilly and his sponsors, we can focus on what's important: ending the occupation of Iraq and holding Fox's best-friends, the Bush Administration, accountable.

Bill O'Reilly: get off your high horse and get off of our TV screens!

Cindy Sheehan is the mother of Spc. Casey Austin Sheehan who was KIA in Iraq on 04/04/04. She is a co-founder and President of Gold Star Families for Peace and the author of two books: Not One More Mother's Child and Dear President Bush.

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