Last week Bill O’Reilly left the comfort of his Manhattan studio to go on assignment. It was revealed this week that he had slipped surreptitiously into Afghanistan. As is his practice, his trip was not much more than a PR junket where he distributed Fox News swag and copies of his book, Culture Warrior. It is somewhat ironic that he would pawn that screed of an imaginary morality clash off on soldiers who are facing all too real dangers.
This time, though, O’Reilly wasn’t content with glorifying his own selflessness, he found it necessary to insult the sponsors of innumerable charities and entertainments – the USO. O’Reilly complained that they weren’t doing enough for the troops here:
“As far as I know, the only famous people in the past year were (country music singer) Toby Keith and me.”
When reached for a response, a USO spokesman corrected the record saying that they had hosted seven entertainment tours to Afghanistan this year. There were also 12 tours last year. Amongst the previous guests was the man that O’Reilly will only refer to as Stuart Smalley. Al Franken has, in fact, participated in six USO tours. And rather than going to promote a new book, he brought along country singers, TV stars, cheerleaders and put on a three hour show.
Someone should tell O’Reilly that Afghanistan is not just another stop on his book tour. And if he thinks the USO isn’t doing enough, maybe he should volunteer once in a while.