The O'Reilly Factor
A daily summary of segments aired on The O'Reilly Factor. A preview of the evening's rundown is posted before the show airs each weeknight.
Friday, February 15, 2013
Legal fallout from a Carnival cruise nightmare
Juan began Friday's show with the nightmarish story of the Carnival Cruise ship that was stranded at sea for five days with overflowing toilets and food shortages. Maritime attorney Michael Winkleman contended that passengers have a legitimate legal claim against the cruise line. "These people were forced to live in horrible conditions for five days," he said, "and to think that they didn't suffer is ridiculous. I've already spoken with numerous passengers and it's my job to get them what is fair and reasonable under the law." But author Jay Herring suggested that Carnival's offer of $500 per passenger is eminently fair. "On a scale of 1 to 10, this incident was probably a 5 or a 6. Nobody was hurt and I think the compensation that Carnival has offered is more than adequate. This is not going to affect passenger bookings or overall revenues for Carnival or any cruise line." Juan attempted to put the incident in perspective, saying, "Nobody lost their lives, nobody is dying from sickness."
Cornel West calls President Obama a war criminal over drone policy
Left-wing professor Cornell West, widely considered a leading black intellectual, has called President Obama a "war criminal" for his willingness to kill terror suspects with drones. Juan spoke about the drone attacks with Medea Benjamin of the anti-war group Code Pink. "We have to acknowledge the killing of thousands of people," she said, "and that this drone policy is terrorizing entire populations. I was recently in Pakistan and saw what it's like for people to be living under drones 24 hours a day and the fear it instills. This has become the best recruiting tool for extremist organizations, it has made us less safe at home, and we now see Al Qaeda spreading in Yemen and northern Africa. Do you think a secret government program that is killing innocent people is good for the security of the United States?" Juan argued that drones are killing bad guys and saving American lives: "How does it make us less safe at home to kill terrorists who want to kill us? Congress has given the President the authority to go after terrorists and kill them, so I don't see how anyone can call the President a war criminal."
President Obama addresses gun violence in Chicago
President Obama visited his murder-ravaged home town Friday and stressed the need for gun control and more responsible fathers. Juan discussed the Chicago situation with radio talk show host Matt McGill and attorney Jacques DeGraff. "As the President stated," McGill said, "this is more than a gun issue or an issue about government, this is about what the community has to do for itself. Single parenthood has been killing the African American community for years and unless we address that head-on we are going to be lost." DeGraff lauded President Obama for stressing the importance of fathers. "No president has ever stood before the American people and said, 'I wish I had a father.' That was a seminal moment in this discussion about the family and that is the larger issue - how do we put our families back together and how do we provide hope to inner cities?" Juan agreed, but added that the President's visit was long overdue: "I think it took way too long for the President to visit his home town and connect the dots. There is family breakdown in the black community and 70% of black children born out of wedlock."
Report: American taxpayer spends $2 billion on illegal immigrants' emergency room care
A new study claims that treating illegal immigrants cost taxpayers about $2 billion a year. Steven Camarota, a staunch opponent of illegal immigration, stressed the need for stronger border control. "If you want to avoid the cost," he said, "you have to enforce immigration laws and cause people to go back home. There is no middle ground here, you can't say we'll let them here but we won't give them health care or education. Either you avoid large scale illegal immigration or you accept these costs." But immigration attorney Francisco Hernandez claimed that enforcement is counter productive. "Why isn't anybody throwing out a big alarm over the $7 billion appropriation for the rusted wall that has fallen apart? Let's not just bad-mouth people and talk about what they supposedly cost. These folks live here, they pay taxes, and our Social Security system needs them contributing to our retirements."
Former Mets catcher Mike Piazza enters the No Spin Zone
Juan introduced Bill's recent interview with former baseball star Mike Piazza, who has written a book called "Long Shot." Piazza spoke about the unforgettable episode during the 2000 season when New York Yankees pitcher Roger Clemens threw a broken bat in Piazza's direction, nearly igniting a brawl. "It was the most bizarre incident," Piazza said, "and in the moment it was pretty intense. But I've moved on from it, I don't hold a grudge." The former Met catcher also recalled how the terror attacks of 9/11 shaped his priorities. "It was a fundamental shift in my life, it allowed me to focus on building a family and the things that life is all about. I think back to the devastation and the despair and the sadness and how much prayer got me through that week. We just rolled up our sleeves and we donated a lot of money and a lot of time. We were glad to chip in any way we could."
Olympian Oscar Pistorius, accused of murdering his model girlfriend, breaks down in court hearing
South African runner Oscar Pistorius, the double amputee known as "blade runner," is accused of shooting and killing his girlfriend. Juan discussed the case with sportscaster Jim Gray, who interviewed Pistorius at the 2012 Olympics in London. "I was speaking to him at the height of his life," Gray recalled. "He said he had cramps in his cheeks from smiling so much, he felt that he would have an impact on the entire world for the rest of his life." Gray theorized why some elite athletes go astray in their personal lives. "I think what happens is that these guys become invincible on the field and it spills over to off the field, where they think they're indestructible and infallible. The public also has a role in this because the public has an appetite for these guys to be heroes." Juan lamented that Oscar Pistorius is only the latest fallen hero: "I think of Tiger Woods and Lance Armstrong and now Oscar Pistorius, who were inspiring. In Oscar's case, he was saying to young people that you can do anything, but now he's charged with premeditated murder. I find myself wondering what is going on with these athletes. We want real heroes, we don't want guys who lie and cheat and kill!"
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