Fox’s Bill O’Reilly has been clamoring for his chance to have a word with Retired General Colin Powell, because of Powell’s support for President Obama and some of his harsh criticisms of the Republican Party, and recently O’Reilly finally got his chance on the Factor, and it aired Tuesday night on Jan. 29, 2013, and it did not disappoint.
Right out of the gate O’Reilly came out swinging—trying to put Powell on the defensive about his recent Democratic support for Obama, and he did so by throwing out some statistics about the Black community. O’Reilly unloaded on Powell’s support for Obama when Obama, as O’Reilly put it, has comprehensively failed the Black community, along with the rest of the country!
With criticisms that came straight out of the playbook of Dr. Cornel West
and Tavis Smiley, O’Reilly showed the world his foggy and mostly unknown concern about the plight of the Black community by citing the unemployment rate for Blacks right now under Obama’s watch—a rate that was at 14 percent in December of 2012, which O’Reilly vehemently explained is an increase from before Obama took office. He also pointed out that Whites have exceedingly more wealth in the United States than Blacks, which implies that Obama is somehow at fault for not changing that reality as well.
Powell responded back by asking O’Reilly why he felt the need to minimize him by only seeing him as an African-American—based on a line of questioning that is almost always exclusively reserved for Black politicians or Black dignitaries.
Basically, Powell cited an improving economy under Obama’s vision as the best remedy available to help struggling minorities at this point, which represents no faith at all in Republican, economic visions like Mitt Romney’s recent campaign.
O’Reilly kept it racial, as he decided to go after Powell on his pro-Obama stance on the infamous voter ID stigma of the 2012 campaign, saying that the Republicans were not trying to suppress the Black vote.
Powell disagreed and lectured O’Reilly on the underlying theme of the voter ID laws, along with attempts to do away with early voting by numerous Republican legislatures and Republican governors in places like Florida, which caused long 8 to 9 hour lines to vote this past November.
Powell rationalized it by saying that if the Republican Party wants to gain the trust of minorities, underhanded attempts to disenfranchise them from voting is not the way to do it. You want to “make it easier for people to vote, not harder” said Powell.
O’Reilly continued on with his racial confrontation by questioning Powell about his criticisms of former Mitt Romney surrogate John Sununu and former Alaska Governor Sarah Palin.
You know that Sununu is not a “racist,” and you know that he was only calling Obama things like “lazy” and un-American because it was in the heat of the moment said O’Reilly.
Governor Palin is not a racist either—she’s just a “performer” said O’Reilly. When she accused Obama of “shucking and jiving,” she was only performing and rallying her base said O’Reilly!
Now even though Powell did give Sununu the benefit of the doubt for him not being a racist, he again criticized Sununu and Palin for their ragged and thoughtless anxiousness to use such careless and insensitive language. As Powell expounded, what’s the point of revving up your base at the expense of alienating everybody else, especially when you claim that you are trying to woo in new minority voters?
And lastly, in a bizarre, juvenile kind of way; O’Reilly told Powell about numerous nameless Republicans who are going around spreading rumors about him—saying that Powell is mad at the Republican Party, because the Bush 43 administration used him as a straw man when he was sent to United Nations in February of 2003 with false information. Powell denied the charge, and said that he had the same information that everyone else had.
O’Reilly did everything that he could possibly do to try and peel away the layers of political creditability that Powell has re-earned since his weapons of mass destruction calamity.
And although he tried his best to coax Powell into giving minorities the okay to go back into the GOP waters, Powell stuck to his beliefs that there is still a racist, conservative, minority-feeding shark that swims there. And until somebody removes it, the Republican beaches will remain filled with old, angry White men and the few women who march behind them.