Bill O’Reilly abruptly announced a vacation amid the rising attention on the accusations of sexual harassment against him. However, since Fox News made like Donald Trump and told him “You’re fired,” O’Reilly jumped on a plane to New York and issued a statement blaming the alleged harassment victims for his firing.
He wrote in a statement, via CNN’s Dylan Byers:
Over the past 20 years at Fox News, I have been extremely proud to launch and lead one of the most successful news programs in history, which has consistently informed and entertained millions of Americans and significantly contributed to building Fox into the dominant news network in television. It is tremendously disheartening that we part ways due to completely unfounded claims. But that is the unfortunate reality many of us in the public eye must live with today. I will always look back on my time at Fox with great pride in the unprecedented success we achieved and with my deepest gratitude to all my dedicated viewers. I wish only the best for Fox News Channel.
The “these victims are lying because I am a celebrity” defense is one that has been used by a number of famous men accused of sexual harassment and assault. When these famous folks end up going to trial, many times they are acquitted of the charges. Yet, the idea that allegations of sexual harassment or assault are something that all celebrities face is pure nonsense.
Sean Hannity is no less controversial than Bill O’Reilly, and has been around from the beginning of Fox News. Yet, in none of the stories of sexual harassment the plagued that network has anyone made such a false claim about the conservative host. Liberal firebrands (such as they are) like Ed Schultz and Lawrence O’Donnell are just as controversial to the right as O’Reilly and his ilk are to the left, yet they too don’t face accusations like these.
What do you think? Is O’Reilly’s claim that he’s unfairly targeted by women making up stories seem credible? Or do you think that, when it comes to claims like these, where there’s this much smoke there has to be some fire? Share your thoughts, opinions, and experiences in the comments below.