I do my best to ignore Bill O’Reilly, call it self preservation. Time spent pondering O’Reilly, not only lost but loathed. Days of amusing myself with repugnant snippets of O’Reiily’s smug ignorance are long gone. Despite admirable intentions, every so often this numskull smirks uninvited across my screen.
Tonight’s source of provocation – O’Reilly’s “theory” in response to a recent Gallup poll. Pollsters published statistics pointing to America “evenly split” between people who identify themselves as liberal vs. conservative. Apparently in 1999 conservatives outnumbered liberals two to one. Bill O’Reilly has an explanation…
“Only about 50 percent of the American people take the time to understand important issues,” he said on his show this week. “Half the country does not; they are simpletons, unwilling and unable to discipline themselves into formulating a philosophy of life.”
O’Reilly added that those who supported President Obama in 2008 and 2012 must not have “grasped” his policies, and only cast their votes for him “because of his charisma and his historic position as the first black man to achieve the White House.”
O’Reilly hasn’t the power to evoke more than guffaws from me, his hold over millions of viewers is another matter. Right wing America’s poster boy just declared liberal voters unfortunate inhabitants of bell curve’s lowest regions. Never mind that IQ bell curves plot roughly the same percentage on top as at the bottom, with 70% somewhere in the middle – according to O’Reilly, liberals are simpletons.
Immature allegations of mental capacity are nothing new, petulant playground insults occupy all grade school recesses. Calling out intelligence is the fall back position when you haven’t a leg to stand on. Attempts to justify unpleasant realities with blanket assertions of “they’re all stupid” ring pathetic at best.