Opinion

Is Bill O’Reilly another victim?

 

Bill O’Reilly’s sudden departure from Fox News last week raised a few eyebrows.

Fans of the show where quick to lash out at Fox News for his dismissal, while those on the left cheered the show and Bill’s demise.

I’m not a fan of the O’Reilly Factor, nor do I dislike the show; his show just doesn’t interest me. But there is something else going on here, which happens all-to-often, an injustice.

How does one go from “the most respected news man on television” to unemployed in a matter of weeks?

It seems Bill O’Reilly is yet another victim of a judgmental society which has already made its mind up; Bill O’Reilly is not only accused of sexual harassment, but is guilty as charged. He is not the first, nor will he be the last victim of this pre-condemnation.

I do not know if he is guilty of what he has been accused of, but it is evident the public in general is already convinced he is. There is a certain stigma attached to some accusations, once leveled never seem to go away. They stick to the accused like a tattoo.

You call a person a liar, a thief, or a cheat, and the media audience takes it in stride, but:

Once a man is accused of rape, the deck automatically begins to be stacked against him. Once the public hears the accusation, they either convict him right away in their minds or become high suspicious of the individual. The same can be said for those accused of child abuse, child molestation, child pornography, or sexual harassment; they are guilty until the public’s demand for proof of innocence is met.

When the accusations are later proven to be false, most people say oh well and move on, or their suspicions never completely go away. But it’s too late for the accused, their life, is already damaged, and many times ruined for the remainder of their lives.

Anyone remember Crystal Mangum? She was the stripper who falsely accused 3 Lacrosse players of rape. The public opinion at the time: yes, 3 rich white boys raped this poor defenseless black stripper.

The campus on which this ‘rape’ took place was soon invaded by large groups of people who were convinced these three men were guilty as charged, based on nothing more than an accusation;

On March 29, more than 500 students, faculty members, administrators, and Durham residents marched across Duke—starting at the Marketplace on East Campus and ending more than a mile later at the Duke Chapel on West Campus—a “Take Back the Night” protest that was coincidentally part of a long-planned Sexual Assault Prevention Week on campus.”

The whole story was a lie, it destroyed the lives of 4 innocent college age men and their families, cost millions of dollars in legal fees proving their innocence, and the social injustice handed to them by a prejudgmental society, has not been corrected, even 10 years after the fact.

So what happened to Crystal Mangum? She’s in prison for a murder, convicted of stabbing her boyfriend to death.

What about the thousands of people who knew the Lacrosse players where guilty and said so? Did they collect money to offset the legal expenses? Did they offer apologies to Reade Seligmann, Collin Finnerty, Dave Evans, or Ryan McFadden? No they simply when on with their lives, leaving the lives of these 4 men in ruins.

Is Bill O’Reilly guilty of sexual harassment as charged? We do not know yet. Let me repeat that – we do not know yet. But the damage is already done. Bill is gone, and will likely never again be on television or radio, his brand permanently damaged.

O’Reilly’s fall from grace came quickly. And the story played out like it has many times in the past.

First, the accusations from Perquita Burgess and a rush to judgment media audience.

Then sponsors began pulling ad money from the show. PC (politically correct) businesses don’t want to offend anyone, in their minds they can’t afford to lose any customer, so they quickly distance themselves from any situation like the Bill O’Reilly case; which makes them as guilty of precondemnation as the general public.

Once that happened, it only reinforced the public’s condemnation of Bill O’Reilly – thinking “he must be guilty, otherwise the sponsors wouldn’t have bailed on him.”

Once the sponsor money was gone, Fox was left with no choice but to replace Bill O’Reilly. Bill O’Reilly’s fall from grace came at the hands of a former part time employee, with unproven accusations.  Perquita Burgess, armed with a high dollar civil rights attorney  who had inside access to television,  proved the fix was in for Bill.

Is Bill O’Reilly guilty of sexual harassment? All we have at this point is accusations, and lame one’s at that.

As a people who live in a country founded on law and order and the premise of ‘innocent until proven guilty,’ we owe it to Mr. O’Reilly to assume he is innocent until proven guilty. Sadly, he has become just another in a long list of innocent people, whose lives were destroyed because someone accused them of the wrong thing.

But one thing is for certain; Bill O’Reilly is a victim of a pre-condemning, Politically Correct society, and you better pray you are not next.

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