We’ll do it live. Fucking thing! WE’LL DO IT LIVE!!!!! FUCK IT!!!! DO IT LIVE!! I’ll write it and we’ll do it live!! Fucking thing sucks!
– Bill O’Reilly speaking to his staff on ‘Inside Edition’
In America, there are rules for white people and there are rules for black people. While the rules aren’t written down anywhere, they are reinforced by (typically) privileged white men through subtle cues that are often given unconsciously. Take ultimate example of white male privilege, Bill O’Reilly. In an interview segment with University of Kentucky head basketball coach John Calipari on his show last night, Bill O’Reilly laid bare his unconscious racism, reinforcing gross stereotypes about black people without batting an eyelid. You see, Bill doesn’t think he’s a racist, but you’ll see that he clearly is when you parse some of the statements he made to Calipari while discussing culture amongst players on his team.
Here are some of the questions O’Reilly asked Calipari:
“I don’t know if you listen to this rap stuff and hip hop stuff. Has that changed their attitude?….Do they act differently toward you? Do they use four letter words towards you?….How do you keep them away from temptation with the hustlers everywhere…Do you have guys on them all the time? Curfews? Coaches watching them, drug testing them. Do you drug test?”
It’s not exactly difficult to see the racial connotations here.
“This rap stuff and hip hop stuff” = Black music
“The hustlers everywhere” = Age old stereotype of black people
“Do you drug test” = Black people do drugs
So what Bill O’Reilly is actually saying is this: How do you keep young men away from his extremely narrow definition of black culture?
You see, aggression, foul language and sexually inappropriate behavior is ok when you are rich and white (and can make embarrassing problems go away with millions of dollars), but not if it rapped about in music videos.
The kids on the Kentucky State basketball team should definitely be encouraged to stay away from negative influences, particularly racist misogynists who abuse co-workers with repeated use of ‘four letter words’. Oh wait, it doesn’t count when you’re white.
Ben Cohen is the editor and founder of The Daily Banter. He lives in Washington DC where he does podcasts, teaches Martial Arts, and tries to be a good father. He would be extremely disturbed if you took him too seriously.