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.
Wednesday, April 18, 2007
The Factor Rundown
Talking Points Memo
Top Story
Unresolved Problems Segment
Personal Story Segment
Miller Time Segment
Back of Book Segment
Factor Mail
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Preventing a repeat of Virginia Tech
"NBC News has broadcast tape of killer Cho Seung-Hui, tape that was apparently sent to the news agency by the murderer himself after he killed the first two students at Virginia Tech. Here's some of what Cho had to say: 'Thanks to you I die like Jesus Christ to inspire generations of the weak and defenseless ... your trust fund wasn't enough ... you've had a hundred billion chances and ways to have avoided today but you decided to spill my blood ... now you have blood on your hands.' The killer gave no explanation as to why he committed the mass murder. The statement was rambling, sometimes obscene, obviously disturbing. Federal authorities are still trying to put the whole thing together."

The Factor spoke with Fox News correspondent Catherine Herridge, who reported from Virginia on Cho's troubled past. "In November and December of 2005 two female students complained that he was stalking them. Then an acquaintance of his said he seemed suicidal. A court issued a temporary detention order that concluded that Cho was mentally ill and posed an imminent danger to himself or to others." Also from Virginia, FNC's Molly Hennenberg reported on the reaction to Cho's home made video. "It added a whole new level of anguish here on the campus. One woman said she now has an idea of the terror the victims must have felt." The Factor reiterated that Cho was the personification of evil. "The tape was sneering, hateful, and packed with vengeance. Now we have to mix grief with rage. Yeah, the guy is mentally ill, but so what? He's evil!"

News Link: VT Killer sends video to NBC
The concept of evil in America
Guests: Dr. Sally Vance Trembath, University of San Francisco & Dr. Michael Welner, New York University

How was Cho Seung-Hui able to attend college and even purchase a gun? Psychiatrist Michael Welner theorized that Cho's mental illness was not severe enough to warrant involuntary hospitalization. "You're dealing with someone who is docile," Welner said. "He was smart enough to sit in front of a doctor and present himself in a way that is not scary. Emergency rooms will not admit somebody for starting a fire, or because a girl found him 'creepy.'" Professor Sally Vance-Trembath tried to differentiate between insanity and evil. "There are lots of issues that determine how responsible a person is for his acts. Cho clearly had something wrong with his brain, but the brain is not identical with the mind. The question I would ask is when did he start rejecting ways to deal with his physiological illness." The Factor argued that Cho Seung-Hui was fully culpable. "I say he's 100% responsible unless he's insane and did not know right from wrong."

News Link: VT Killer ruled "mentally ill" in 2005
Muslim extremists kill 178 in Iraq
Guest: Fox News military analyst Col. Bill Cowan

Bombers killed 178 people in Iraq on Wednesday, and there is now a video showing Islamists beheading Iraqi police. But while the Virginia Tech slaughter is covered by media around the world, little attention is paid to Muslim radicals who kill innocent people in Iraq and elsewhere. FNC's Col. Bill Cowan tried to explain the discrepancy. "It's almost as if people are in denial about what some of these extremists are doing. The jihadists are not reluctant at all to kill old people, women, children, anyone at all. But all the hate and anger is focused at the United States, and we're trying to do some good things around the world." The Factor contended that the inhumane terror in Iraq is nearly unprecedented. "The press around the world is hammering us as a 'gun culture.' But in Iraq there's butchery every day and you don't hear anything at all. The level of evil in Iraq is something I have never seen in my lifetime."

News Link: Major car bombs blast off in Baghdad
Thompson's allegedly anti-Semitic remarks
Guest: Rabbi Irwin Kula

Speaking to a Jewish group, Republican presidential hopeful Tommy Thompson said that earning money is "part of the Jewish tradition," a comment labeled "inexcusable" by the Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel. Rabbi Irwin Kula told The Factor why some Jews are sensitive about this particular subject. "I'm not offended," Kula declared, "but you have to understand that the stereotype of Jews and money has been used for hundreds of years to justify persecution. So it has a legacy of real hurt. But we have to give people the benefit of the doubt." The Factor decried the fact that public figures have to walk on eggshells. "Obviously Governor Thompson's remarks were not malevolent. But we are in the age of Imus, and all of us in the public eye are under siege by people who take what we say and try to hurt us with it."

News Link: Tommy Thompson forced to apologize
The latest with Dennis Miller
Commenting on the Virginia Tech tragedy, Dennis Miller expressed his impatience with people who claim to have immediate answers. "I find myself tuning out when anybody speaks in the wake of devastation with a high degree of certitude. But one thing I'll say is that if we are not going to detect this kid with the tea leaves he was leaving out there - lighting a room on fire, stalking two women, writing highly disturbing scripts - if we're not going to glean those tea leaves, then we're not going to catch anybody." Miller also argued for sensible gun restrictions. "I'm not for overturning the Constitution, but the gun dealer said he was able to sell this sick and deluded kid a gun in ten minutes. I can't get a Starbucks in ten minutes. We have to figure out some middle ground where everyone gives a little." The Factor agreed that compromise is desperately needed. "I think the citizenry needs to protect itself, and to say we're going to ban guns is crazy. But you're right, you have to check people out before they can buy a gun."
Simon Cowell's Va. Tech controversy
Guest: Fox News entertainment reporter Jeannie Wolf

"American Idol" judge Simon Cowell is caught up in a controversy related to Monday's shootings. When contestant Chris Richardson said "my heart and prayers go out to Virginia Tech," Cowell rolled his eyes with apparent annoyance. But entertainment reporter Jeanne Wolf said the criticism is totally unwarranted. "Simon was reacting to a previous comment and didn't hear the kid's tribute to Virginia Tech. He is being incredibly judged as if he was completely insensitive and it's unfair. This is a 'gotcha' atmosphere and it's out of control." The Factor sympathized with Cowell and other celebrities in the Internet age. "You have a culture now where you just tear famous people to pieces. It's a national sport and an obsession."

News Link: Simon Cowell rolls eyes at VT tribute?
Viewers sound off
Factor Words of the Day
Your e-mails continued to focus on guns and the murders at Virginia Tech. Some excerpts:

Andrew Milbourne, Strafford, PA: "Mr. O'Reilly, I completely agree with you that reasonable gun control laws are a must, but the Second Amendment is in place for a reason."

Michael Nolan, Denton, TX: "Liberals like me don't want to take away guns from law abiding people, we just don't want criminals to have them."

Martha Case, Winlock, WA: "Bill, what part of 'shall not be infringed' don't you understand? All restrictive gun laws are unconstitutional. Our rights are God given."

Del Brooks, Albany, GA: "Mr. O, your segment on gun control was the most unbiased that I have ever seen."
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