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.
Tuesday, December 21, 2004
The Factor Rundown
Talking Points Memo
Top Story
Factor Follow Up Segment
Personal Story Segment
Impact Segment
Personal Story Segment
Back of Book Segment
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Finding the truth
"As more Christmas victories come rolling in, so do more personal attacks. The Los Angeles Times called me a thug--that paper has defamed me and others who are fighting against the secularism of America. If you read the progressive press, you would think this is about a bunch of fanatics trying to ram the birth of Jesus down the collective throat of America. The truth is that the federal holiday of Christmas should be respected in public. If you are offended by a snowman or the image of a baby, you need therapy. This Christmas battle really stunned the secular forces, and their desperation is showing. There will be many more battles to come, and we hope you look to us for the truth."
Continuing problems in Iraq
Guest: Lt. Col. Thomas Raleigh

The military is still investigating the Marine who shot and killed an injured enemy in Fallujah. Many Americans hope the military decides against prosecution, but retired Lt. Col. Thomas Raleigh wants the Marine to face the military justice system. "The faith of a people in an institution relies in part on the ability of the institution to police itself. Cases come up, the military deals with them fairly." Raleigh also expressed pessimism about the war itself. "Things are spinning out of control. There aren't enough troops; our intelligence at a tactical level stinks. Plan A didn't work, Plan B isn't working now. We need a Plan C. If the President relies on his present advisors to come with that Plan C, we have a real chance to fail."
Denver parade decision reversed
Guest: Peter Boyles, KHOW

The Factor recently reported that organizers of Denver's "Parade of Lights" banned a float because it was deemed too explicitly religious. They have now relented and will allow the float to be part of next year's parade. Radio talk show host Peter Boyles told The Factor why the decision was reversed. "It's a real tribute to alternative media and talk radio. This became the major topic, and the parade people finally said next year the float will be permitted. It really got down to the strength of talk radio and people speaking out. The new media showed a lot of clout."
Christmas and Hannukah connections
Guest: Rabbi Michael Lerner

A few have tried to portray this season's Christmas wars as a battle between Christians and Jews. Left wing Rabbi Michael Lerner agreed that Christmas is under siege, but not from Jews or radical secularists. "Many of us in the Jewish world deeply respect Christmas and its message of hope," Lerner said. "We also recognize that there has been an assault on that message. The undermining takes place by the capitalist marketplace, which has turned Christmas into an orgy of spending and materialism. We have to affirm that the central messages of Christmas are love, caring, and generosity."
Giuliani and Schwarzenegger: Impacting the GOP?
Guest: Melanie Morgan, conservative talk radio host

Socially liberal Republicans Rudy Giuliani and Arnold Schwarzenegger are among their party's most charismatic leaders. Schwarzenegger is ineligible for the Presidency, but at this early stage Giuliani is considered a front runner. Talk show host Melanie Morgan is among those who hope a more conservative candidate will emerge. "In a time of disaster and terrorism, Giuliani would be a terrific choice," Morgan asserted. "But when things are stable, I'm not sure people in middle America will understand his positions. It would be very difficult for conservatives to move toward Giuliani." The Factor noted the lack of genuinely conservative candidates. "There doesn't seem to be a conservative Republican in the country who can stand up to Hilary Clinton in terms of name recognition. Giuliani could take her on and decimate her."
Books that enlighten: Joel Osteen
Guest: Author Joel Osteen

Religious books are flying off the shelves, among them Joel Osteen's "Your Best Life Now." Osteen tried to explain the current thirst for spiritual affirmation. "People are looking for hope and encouraging, and they turn to their faith. My own book is about how to live your life better today, and not be afraid. My calling is to encourage people and give them hope." The Factor asked whether a non-believer could reach his or her full potential. "I don't think you can," Osteen replied. "Faith is the central theme of our lives. To reach the full destiny of what God has put in our heart, you've got to turn yourself to Him."
The Ebenezer Award
Guest: Anthony Picarello, President, Becket Fund

Each year the Becket Fund for Religious Freedom presents an award to the most ridiculous assault on the Christmas tradition. The Fund's president Anthony Picarello announced the winner of this year's award--Lake Washington High School near Seattle. According to Picarello, the school "cancelled a scheduled performance of A Christmas Carol, saying it would generate too many difficult issues regarding the role of religion in public schools." Picarello and his organization frequently battle the ACLU, especially on issues of religious symbols on public property. "The ACLU," he said, "has an exaggerated sense of what the separation of church and state means under the Constitution."
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