The former host of The O'Reilly Factor wants us to remember that people who are old like him barely matter
Does anyone remember who Bill O'Reilly was?
We probably shouldn't talk about him in the past tense. He's still alive, after all, though probably not for much longer. He's only 70, so he could live another 30 years, and probably someone in the world would be happy to see him still shuffling about, mumbling about writing another Killing So-and-So book, but most of us can see that he's on his last legs. How else could you explain the idea of a man who was once considered a sharp political commentator speaking dismissively about the deaths of tens of thousands of people?
That's exactly what O'Reilly did when calling in to Wednesday's episode of The Sean Hannity Show. Referring to the COVID-19 pandemic that is currently ravaging the hospital system in New York City, Hannity and O'Reilly started out by pining together for a return to normal life, which prompted O'Reilly to find an optimistic angle, saying, "We're making little steps. Bernie Sanders, you know, he's—he's gone, that's really good for everybody."
Seann Hannity Bill O'Reilly Two47 News www.youtube.com
It's unclear what O'Reilly might have meant by that—if he felt that the Vermont senator dropping his bid for the Democratic nomination was a positive move in terms of Trump's reelection chances, Joe Biden's shot at the nomination, or just for the country in general. While it seemed to be a complete non-sequitur, perhaps O'Reilly was under the impression that Bernie Sanders' campaign was somehow responsible for the spread of the coronavirus—when people get on in years, it can be hard to tell what they're even talking about.
But after that brief tangent, O'Reilly managed to get back on topic, producing some figures downplaying the on-going tragedy in a way that almost seemed to suggest that the disruption of familiar routines was actually the bigger issue: "The projections that you just mentioned are down to 60,000, I don't think it will be that high. 13,000 dead now in the USA. Many people who are dying, both here and around the world, were on their last legs anyway." As always, O'Reilly is demonstrating the pinnacle of emotional restraint by keeping things in perspective
Bill O'Reilly - We'll Do It LIVE! www.youtube.com
The "projection" he mentioned is the current estimate for the eventual US death toll from the coronavirus. While it's not clear if that figure will include the deaths that are currently being left out of the total count, 60,000 is significantly less horrifying than previous estimates, which put the expected fatalities closer to 100,000. The fact that Bill O'Reilly happens to think 60,000 is still an overestimate cannot be attributed to any expertise in medicine, epidemiology, or statistics, so the best bet is that he's simply confused—as tends to happen to people who are barely clinging to life. It's good to know that when Bill O'Reilly passes—whether that's a week from now, a year, or twenty years—his loved ones can skip the mourning process and shrug their shoulders because, however he dies, he was old anyway. He was on his last legs.
We can leave aside the fact that many of the people who have already died as a result of contracting the novel coronavirus have been in the prime of their lives. O'Reilly would seemingly acknowledge that those cases deserve our sorrow. His point is just that most of the people who are dying are old like him, and therefore not really worth getting that upset about. If we look at Italy, for example, the death rate for people in their 40s who contracted the virus is less than 1%, while with people in their 70s (like Bill O'Reilly) the virus has killed nearly a quarter of the infected. But they're old anyway, so no big deal. Right, Bill?
Three Bill O'Reilly Sexual Harassment Accusers Speak Out | The Last Word | MSNBC www.youtube.com
The overall message seems to be that if you've ever lost a loved one who was old, you were wrong to get upset about that. They were on their last legs anyway. And if that seems like a heartless, cruel message, please keep in mind that—before he was outed as a serial sexual harasser and removed from Fox News—Bill O'Reilly once hosted the highest-rated show on cable news. These days he is a c-list radio personality.
In other words, he is mentally and physically a hollowed-out husk of his former self—withered away and rapidly deteriorating. We can either wait for him to die, or accept that his life is already devoid of value and start ignoring him now. He's on his last legs anyway.
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What is there to take away from O'Reilly's firing?
After weeks of pressure from advertisers and viewers Fox News decided to remove O'Reilly's show from its network.
[Editor's Note: the following opinions are entirely my own.]
Bill O'Reilly no longer has a TV show. I know it probably shouldn't be surprising, given the backlash that emerged after The Times' profile on O'Reilly's multiple accusations of sexual harassment. Advertisers abandoned his show by the dozen and placed enough pressure that Fox News was willing to kill their golden goose. This is a good thing, right? The voices of a disgusted public were heard and acknowledged, as a man who'd performed predatory acts on colleagues was no longer saved by their personal profitability. But somehow as the fallout continues I can't help but find my optimism tamped down by the painful uncertainty whether or not anything has really changed?
We're undeniably better off without O'Reilly in the television landscape, but there's something unsettling about the way he was removed. As much as people will likely remember this event as the result of citizens' backlash, remember this news comes 18 days after the report was released and prepared themselves to stand by the successful newsman. This comes after Fox News had settled with his accusers for millions of dollars and still opted to renew his contract. There was no excuse of surprise or ignorance from their side. They knew what he'd been accused of but just didn't care. Bill O'Reilly was saved at first because he was profitable and he was let go because he wasn't anymore.
Perhaps this is a simplistic way of looking at the matter, but still it would be nice to know that even when the right decision is made it is done for the right reasons. We live in a world where not only a man who bragged about sexually assaulting women sits in the White House and throws his full support to the entrenched O'Reilly. Where many politicians who admonished Trump for his words, quickly forgot about the entire incident when his poll numbers rose again. Where the journalist who playfully bathed in Trump's words on the Access Hollywood bus receives millions in buyout money and is now plotting a comeback via his bizarre Instagram videos today. Despite the protests and fighting from activists, everybody still wants to live in a world of ignorance. Only when their financial or political futures become questioned does contrition even become considered.
There is a good side to this story, one about the pressure and protesting that made Fox News finally cast O'Reilly aside. That consumers made it known there was money to be lost if they were to continue supporting O'Reilly. Hopefully this teaches a lesson on the standards we require for our public figures. Yet, I already fear the moment ignorance sets back in and O'Reilly finds himself his next job because somebody remembers he was profitable. Trump made it to the White House, Mel Gibson is an Oscar nominated director again, and countless other men continue to skirt by because there's money and power to be found. As much as there is a temptation to call this decision a win, it will only be one if people continue to remind the decision of what men like O'Reilly do. In a world that prioritizes money, it's up to us to make them see beyond dollars and cents.
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After months of on and off again speculation, Rihanna and A$AP Rocky seem to be dating.
Obviously, this is good news if it's true. Can you imagine? For the coordinating outfits alone, I need it.
There have been a ton of icky white rappers over the years, but these take the cake.
On this day in 1990, Vanilla Ice's "Under Pressure" reboot "Ice, Ice Baby" debuted at No. 1 in the UK, kickstarting a Billboard run that would soon carry over to the states and invigorate a fleeting love for Vanilla Ice and his whole...vibe.
Of course, we all know how it ends. Vanilla Ice's credibility and career unraveled as quickly as it began. "Ice Ice Baby" took on a satirical identity larger than its creator, all while Robert Van Wrinkle refused to pay royalties (or even give a shout-out) to Freddie Mercury and David Bowie despite liberally sampling the track's true creators. Ice instead tried to cultivate a hollow rap identity, one where he was a hardened former-gang member from Miami and not a middle-class teen from a Texas suburb. The chorus of the song then came under fire by a black fraternity, who accused Vanilla Ice of ripping off their fraternal chant ("ice ice baby/ too cold, too cold.")
Bhad Bhabie<span style="display:block;position:relative;padding-top:56.25%;" class="rm-shortcode" data-rm-shortcode-id="b713478c8d0b2ded9dc38ad30d984dd1"><iframe lazy-loadable="true" src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/ZW4YGJRUgc4?rel=0" width="100%" height="auto" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" style="position:absolute;top:0;left:0;width:100%;height:100%;"></iframe></span><p>Born from a meme, 15-year-old Danielle Bregoli has somehow maintained a relatively steady rap career these last few years, despite remaining ignorant to the culture she borrows from. Her outlandish behavior has seen no bounds. She <a href="https://www.eonline.com/news/1138116/bhad-bhabie-claps-back-after-she-s-accused-of-darkening-her-skin" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">darkened her skin</a>, <a href="https://metro.co.uk/2019/12/04/bhad-bhabie-defends-box-braids-hairstyle-accused-cultural-appropriation-11267702/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">spawned dreads</a>, and quelled critics with a shrug. "I act urban," she said. "You can't tell me I'm acting black because I braid my hair. That makes no sense whatsoever." </p><p>Regardless of Bhad Bhabie's inflammatory antics, she has maintained a profitable career, and to everyone's dismay, was even nominated "Top Rap Female Artist" at the 2018 <a href="https://www.buzzfeednews.com/article/nielaorr/bhad-bhabie-iggy-azalea-eminem-danielle-bregoli" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer"><em>Billboard Music Awards</em></a><em>. </em>Luckily, Cardi B won instead. Nevertheless, it is hard to picture where Bhad Bhabie fits into a culture she's so clearly milking for an image. </p>
Woah Vicky<span style="display:block;position:relative;padding-top:56.25%;" class="rm-shortcode" data-rm-shortcode-id="9dd8d75a460357677027f74ca240d73a"><iframe lazy-loadable="true" src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/TAN9ahGEaI0?rel=0" width="100%" height="auto" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" style="position:absolute;top:0;left:0;width:100%;height:100%;"></iframe></span><p>People may remember Woah Vicky, Bhad Bhabie's equally as problematic foe, from a few years ago after a series of back and forth disses between her and Bhabie resulted in a few crude brawls. But Vicky's polarizing career actually came to fruition in 2017 after <a href="https://www.bet.com/news/national/2017/09/07/white-woman--whoavicky--says-she-can-use-the-n-word-because-of-a.html" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">she claimed to be black and allowed to use the N-word</a> despite being white. "Ancestry.com did tell me I was black," she says in the video. "So I have the right to say that I'm black." </p><p>The test told her she was 25% black, and she has since been regularly accused of "acting black" and "putting on a voice" that is not her own. She has since used her millions of followers to help kickstart a budding rap career, and the Bhad Bhabie beef helped establish a tough and even more problematic image. Many are hopeful it doesn't go much farther than it already has.</p>
G-Eazy<span style="display:block;position:relative;padding-top:56.25%;" class="rm-shortcode" data-rm-shortcode-id="d90a905da844696eeb2f681c25ca9c40"><iframe lazy-loadable="true" src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/HCQ6uf0HTGw?rel=0" width="100%" height="auto" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" style="position:absolute;top:0;left:0;width:100%;height:100%;"></iframe></span><p>Bay Area rapper G-Eazy has continued to churn out lackluster pop-rap for years. His pop-laden sound has gotten cleaner and cleaner over the years, and as a result, he is often accused of <a href="https://www.theguardian.com/music/2014/jul/31/g-eazy-rapper-gentrify-hip-hop-interview" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">"gentrifying rap." </a>His moniker is no doubt a playoff of rapper Jeezy and Eazy-E, and while he has long dismissed allegations of <a href="https://www.theguardian.com/music/2014/jul/31/g-eazy-rapper-gentrify-hip-hop-interview" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">cultural appropriation</a> and acknowledged his guest status in Hip-Hop, it's still hard to respect him. </p><p>Maybe it's because he's a <a href="https://www.theguardian.com/music/2014/jul/31/g-eazy-rapper-gentrify-hip-hop-interview" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">coked-out woman abuser</a>, or maybe it's because he has seen an astronomical level of fame, mostly because of his skin color. Or maybe it is because of the time he <a href="https://www.barclayscenter.com/events/detail/g-eazy-logic-the-endless-summer-tour" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">darkened his skin on a promotional poster for a 2016 tour</a>. One thing is for sure: his music has never warranted the praise it's gotten, and his whole James Dean meets Drake image is just confusing.</p>
Denny Blaze<span style="display:block;position:relative;padding-top:56.25%;" class="rm-shortcode" data-rm-shortcode-id="6df2bd26d05fc815f89503a32b6a97a5"><iframe lazy-loadable="true" src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/Uj5urT2VBxo?rel=0" width="100%" height="auto" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" style="position:absolute;top:0;left:0;width:100%;height:100%;"></iframe></span><p>It still remains to be seen whether Denny Blaze, aka Average Homeboy, was ever in on his own joke. His viral YouTube debut "Average Homeboy" polarized everybody when it mysteriously appeared online in 1989. Many applauded the video's entertainment value that comes with watching a sincere teen attempt to playfully rap–Blaze's goofy suburban teen vibe would later be mastered by Lil Dicky, but in a way less problematic way–but Denny's seemingly well-intentioned rhymes played into some dangerous stereotypes. Aside from equating Blackness to crack use in "Average Homeboy," cringe tracks like "Black Men Can't Swim" would all but assure the demise of Denny Hazen's rap alter-ego.</p>
Kreayshawn<span style="display:block;position:relative;padding-top:56.25%;" class="rm-shortcode" data-rm-shortcode-id="a136eb6f81d66dd41bd19a58790f7f43"><iframe lazy-loadable="true" src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/6WJFjXtHcy4?rel=0" width="100%" height="auto" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" style="position:absolute;top:0;left:0;width:100%;height:100%;"></iframe></span><p>Natassia Zolot, aka Kreayshawn, and the now-defunct White Girl Mob gained public attention after the release of Kreayshawn's "Gucci Gucci." The video accumulated millions of views and resulted in a lucrative record deal for Kreayshawn, but the single's coinciding video was accused of appropriating black culture, with Kreayshawn's doorknocker earrings <a href="https://www.buzzfeednews.com/article/nielaorr/bhad-bhabie-iggy-azalea-eminem-danielle-bregoli" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">coming under particular scrutiny.</a> She soon ended up retiring from rap.</p>
Mike Stud<span style="display:block;position:relative;padding-top:56.25%;" class="rm-shortcode" data-rm-shortcode-id="b51971360f1e52de266e58cc4ab0846e"><iframe lazy-loadable="true" src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/KpDmPtz7noM?rel=0" width="100%" height="auto" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" style="position:absolute;top:0;left:0;width:100%;height:100%;"></iframe></span><p>One of the sole-surviving frat-rappers of the mid-2000s, Mike Stud has maintained steady fame despite his awkward relationship with hip-hop. An all-American baseball player at Duke University, Stud took to rapping after an injury derailed his sports career. In 2016, <a href="https://www.nytimes.com/2016/08/21/arts/music/white-rappers-geazy-mike-stud.html" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer"><em>The New York Times</em></a> called him a "Drake clone," citing the fact that his recent traversal into sing-rapping with songs like "Say No More" are melodically similar to Drizzy in more ways than one. </p><p>"His signature catchphrase, a sort of elongated "yup," is essentially lifted from the R&B singer Trey Songz," <em>The Times</em> adds. He's now the star of his own reality series on The Esquire Network, a show that has come under fire for its "ode to binge drinking" and "Girls Gone Wild approach to gender relations." </p><p>Race is never mentioned by Stud or any of his constituents throughout the show, but the closest they come is when they showcase a very uncomfortable performance by Stud in Orlando, Fl, where he's standing among a crowd of Black people rather than drunk sorority girls. "It's a different lineup than we are used to," his tour manager tells the camera. "It's a weird vibe, but it's a show that we have to do." </p><p>Stud can be seen on stage rapping cautiously, trying to showcase respect by not leaning too hard into the fratty antics that normally make up a Mike Stud concert. "Mike Stud's understanding of the difference between his usual show and the Orlando outlier suggests at least a whiff of self-awareness about his unusual relationship to the rest of hip-hop," writes <em>The Times</em>.</p>
The black-and-white music video stars Paul Mescal, the gorgeous Normal People co-lead who shot to fame earlier this year thanks to his brilliant performance and now-infamous neck chain.
Mescal went from being a relative unknown to achieving a rare kind of superstardom this year; his boyish good looks and complexity made him the subject of many a profile.
As if that weren't enough of a high-profile collaboration, the video was directed by Phoebe Waller-Bridge, creator and star of Fleabag and the subject of many a Phoebe Bridge-related joke.
phoebe waller-bridge is the best phoebe bridge— traitor joe (@traitor joe)1559255143.0
The newly passed "BTS Law" allows K-pop stars to defer mandatory military service.
This week South Korea's National Assembly passed a law that is sure to have BTS ARMY cheering them on.
Generally speaking, all South Korean men are required to spend at least 18 months enlisted in the military, with the final cut-off for entry at age 28. But the new legislation — informally referred to as "The BTS Law" — will allow K-pop stars who meet certain requirements to defer until the age of 30.
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