David Letterman’s Rebuttal To Bill O’Reilly’s Beyonce Criticism: What About Miley Cyrus & Justin Bieber?

March 17, 2014  |  

Bill O’Reilly has been vocal about the problem he has with Beyonce’s song “Partition,” saying it’s a bad influence on kids and calling it “garbage” when he had Russell Simmons on his show to talk about an entirely different thing. (Meditation.) The issue came up again when O’Reilly appeared on Late Night with David Letterman, and Letterman, as usual, makes some well-worded points.

Letterman questions why O’Reilly is singling out Beyonce as a pop music offender when you have Miley Cyrus, who played Hannah Montana when she was a star on the Disney Channel just a few short years ago, riding a wrecking ball in the buff. Letterman goes on to make the point that Beyonce isn’t the first entertainer to step on, over, or completely erase the line. In fact, she’s not the only one doing it right now. So why single her out? Once again, O’Reilly brings up the fact that Bey has a big bank account.

“This has been going on for the past 40 or 50 years,” says Letterman. “What about that Miley Cyrus, naked on that thing.”

“Oh, I missed that,” says O’Reilly.

The Fox host, who seemed as though he might be taking a softer tone on the subject this time around then whips out the “T” word to continue the conversation.

“So she’s got $350 million bucks according to Forbes, all right. She doesn’t have to do this,” he continues. “Some of these thugs, that’s all they can do.”

“First of all, we don’t go calling people thugs,” Letterman says to the applause of the audience. “But… your pal Justin Bieber… probably guilty of the same thing.” In other words, if we’re pointing fingers at celebrities for behaving badly, you’re going to run out of fingers. And, again, what about someone who’s fan base is almost entirely comprised of young people.

Yes, yes, yes, yes David Letterman. More than just rebutting his ridiculous argument, which does indeed go all the way back to the beginnings of pop culture, he also highlights both the sexism and the racism at the heart of O’Reilly’s comments. Check out the full clip below.

[h/t ONTD]

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  • John

    O’reily didn’t say anything wrong. I hate when people use the “well you can’t generalize the statements” or “there’s more to it argument.” OF COURSE NOT! People shouldn’t have to waste their time to be extremely politically correct for those not smart enough to understand that nothing is 100%. Ppl should be smart enough to use context. He named beyonce b/c she is #1. The most influential. Dave didn’t say anything wrong either but it’s not like he ‘owned’ O’reily. He just prepared his line of questions and statements so he could appear the logical one (it IS his show). That’s why he kept interrupting O’reily to finish his condescending/comical banter. That’s the style of debate that is most entertaining to people and as a result makes people feel like that person “won”…ps. I actually love Dave and don’t care for O’reily. But the truth is the truth.

    • John

      Also…O’reily has bashed Miley plenty. Practically all of 2013. Let’s not continue to be bent by media people. Realize that black media is geared towards black interest, meaning sites such as Madame Noire has little value in posting about Bill O’reily vs. Miley Cyrus. (Not necessarily a bad or good thing) The point however, is that just people hear 95% of their news through outlets catered for their demographic(s). Just because on thing happened (O’reily vs. Yonce) doesn’t mean another thing happened just b/c you didn’t know about it (O’reily vs Cyrus). The problem is people don’t realize this. It’s to hard to go through life considering the converse, etc 24/7. This belies the power of media.

  • kellzy

    Wow – I’m so upset. I actually agree with Bill O’Reilly. Ugh. I mean, everything he said is legit – so…. crap — couldn’t agree more, it needed to be said. I understand the racial implications but the fact is, young women have kids out of wedlock all the time, and that’s just setting them up for poverty in most cases. I don’t understand why they do that, but I DO know that such virilent opposition to the use of abortion probably plays into it too. Its a lose/lose situation. And I’m sure some won’t like what I say, but lets try and face facts.

  • Sieben713

    O’really is a RACIST to the first degree, he has no CREDIBILITY

  • common sense

    He was talking about Beyoncé because kids look up to her as a role model, like it or not. You can be a great parent and role model, but kids decide who their role models will be. Most of them choose entertainers and athletes because of what they see on T.V. Nike did a commercial about “I wanna be like Mike” (Michael Jordon). Just because you as a parent want to be “the” role model to your kid, doesn’t mean he or she wants you as their role model.
    Bill (while I don’t condone the Thug comment) has a point that Beyoncé has plenty of money and doesn’t need to sell sex to be successful. She has a proven track record. Bill should not lecture to the black community, he has no creditability. Where are the black leaders of today about speaking out against having children out of wed lock. The lack of a family unit is the major problem of our society today. PICK A RACE, it is the major problem today. This leads to kids dropping out of school, unemployment, crime, etc.. This was the point Bill was making. Look at the stats.
    Keys to success:
    Don’t get married until you at least graduate high school.
    Graduate High school
    Develop a skill (This is the minimum wage jobs) (apprenticeships and/or trade school)
    Employers ARE hiring folks with skills
    WORK (at this level money is way more than minimum wage)
    Get married
    Kids (no more than one income can afford)
    Keep working.
    Keep working.
    Keep working.
    Wealth will come.

  • Observe and Report

    Its a sad day when black people cant question anything without being called a hater or jealous. This is why our community is dying at this accelerated rate. We accept everything and question nothing!

  • ComeLetsTalk

    Lets all it what it is a black woman making more money than he will ever see and he’s pissed about it. Madonna has collective banked more money than Bey and granted she caught some hell back in her day. But i don’t see Bill going after her. And he’s trying to act like he hasn’t been around these last few months for Miley’s ratchet transformation? Liar, Reily has a hardon for those pecan thighs, point blank and the period.

  • dee

    Totally agree with Letterman on this one. Bill O Reily been racist for years. Remember when he critized Pespi for having Ludacris in a commerical in the early 2000s? I’m not sure but I think the commerical got banned, removed or something because of Bill O Reily making a big hoot about it. Saying how Ludacris was a bad choice because of his music. Typical racism

    • TGarcia

      You’re right. We included that in a slideshow we did yesterday about celebs who lost their sponsorship deals!

  • Open your own damn cookie

    Bill spends all his time talking about conservatism and family values but i didn’t stop him from having multiple affairs and a love child……My point, fix your own damn life!

  • Meandmybish

    This whole conversation is sickening. I wish they could have used a translator to articulate what he truly wanted to say!! Why is thug and Bey even being used in the same sentence?

  • fred

    I kind see where Bill Is coming from but here’s the thing and I don’t think that most white people like Bill OREILLY realize is that you can get rid of all rap music and the problems that black people have to deal with in the black community are still going to be there because rap music isn’t the source… Rap music is music and music is a form art… Art is a reflexion of real life through the eyes of the artist… Rappers are artists who paint of real life that they themselves have experinced or witnessed through music… If you want the music to change then real life must change 1st…

    Everything has a cause and an effect…

    It’s funny how some of the people like Bill OReilly wanna blame effects of the problem but never wanna address the cause… Bill OReilly in this piece brought up the fact that black music was better in the 50’s, 60’s, and 70’s… But won’t bring up the fact that Back in those day black people fought oppression with education and unity and we had leaders like Martin Luther King Jr. That were the main people on TV spreading that message but they were all murdered because white people felt like their way of life was in danger… Later in the 80’s rappers started rapping about selling drugs and gang banging…. But Bill and other people like him won’t acknowledge the fact that Drugs and guns were being brought into the country by white men who owned plane’s and sea vessels… And everything you see when you cut on the news is a product of what some of these white folks created… But they wanna go after the drug dealers but not the ones who own the boats and planes and they want to blame the rappers for talking about what he see when he looks out his window…

    Even though rappers have an influence on people but getting rid of them aren’t going to solve any problems in the community….

  • Ronda Lee

    This is racism in under a guise of concern O ‘ Reilly could care less about the black teenage pregnancy rate which is actually lower than the white teenage abortion rate. ( look it up). He is pushing his racist agenda once again for ratings. Madonna not only erased the lines in her videos but also in the subject matter, had the Catholic Church all heated over a few of her songs in the ’80’s. The white kids love Bey ,& the “thugs” that creates fear in right wing mommy & daddies OReilly represents cause their kids are helping to push those fat payrolls!! Can’t stand him.

  • slacktraxx .

    Why isn’t he focused on MTV and their show Teen Moms? I haven’t seen an African-American on that show yet. They’re glamorizing white teen moms who are having kids out of wedlock and making them celebrities. Bill O Reilly GTFOH!!!

    • slacktraxx .

      And we all know you don’t give a dam about African Americans, you’re just scared that we’re outnumbering your white race, you prejudice bastard!!

      • ComeLetsTalk

        Speak the truth!

      • Joanne1979

        We will NEVER outnumber them. Don’t believe the hype. We are procreating at a slower rate than whites and Hispanics.

  • Cismet

    I think he’s mad that he doesn’t have Bey and Jay z’s money, and obviously mad at himself that he’s turned on by her. He can’t control himself so he wants her to do it for him, not give him anything that excites him too much.

  • Terry L Anderson

    Thx David Letterman….Always refreshing to see a White Man unafraid to tell the truth.

  • I’mAmom

    First off entertainers should not be role models to our children. As a parent we should be teaching our kids about the differences between a role model and an entertainer. Secondly, this shows that he is racist pinpoint the obvious not because someone decided to make a certain type of song that he doesn’t like. She is an adult, and she is married and she can do what she wants with her husband. Just like she could if it was her boyfriend because she is an adult. If people don’t like what she talks about don’t let your child listen to her music or go to her concerts. At the end of the day she is an adult no different than what we do as adults in our homes or everyday lives. Let’s stop allowing the media, sports, and entertainment raise and mold our children and then when we don’t like when they do something wrong we want to talk bad about them. They are human beings and they make mistakes like everyone. Teach our children about the real world and that’s what’s on tv isn’t it!

    • True

      U r so on point with this…Being a parent to my children is my job not the entertainment industry!!!

    • Chaz

      I wish I could like this comment a thousand times! Lol. I always say we should teach our kids that they are entertainers, NOT role models! And once again… that word “thug” Smh. White people I tell ya. They never seem to amaze me.

  • Tameka (BloggerPoet)

    Bill thinks he’s the modern day massa of the black community. Always poking and prodding and giving out lashes. What does her bank account have to do with anything? I don’t care that he didn’t like the song or the imagery. A lot of people weren’t ready for her being so open and sexual on this album. Everyone’s sensibilities can’t handle things of this nature, but all the code words and racial side-eye he gives when discussing black artists is truly nauseating. What a disgusting human being.

  • Bree

    Its so funny…he is always so called “concerned” for the group of people he hates the most. Why are black people always the focus of Bill O’Reilly’s topics? He never has nothing to say about any white acts…he skips right over Miley and Justin and focuses on Beyonce. The one who’s married with a child born in wedlock. Never had any drug scandal…DUI scandal…any real valid controversy ever. But sure…BEYONCE is the problem with the black youth…OK.

  • enterer

    Way to stick it to him, Dave! So O’Reilly, who’s face is more disgusting than actions, is jealous of Beyoncé because she’s way richer than he is, and therefore calls her a thug. She’s such a great singer that it shouldn’t even matter how “outrageous” an old man like him thinks she is.. it’s sheer jealousy, and another chance for him to come on air and try to make his next $2, compared to talents like Beyoncé.

  • Bernadette Thomas-Hewitt

    To hell with Bey, Jay, Justin, Miley ESPECIALLY..my 13 year old son calls Miley a whore..Bey & Jay music not allowed in my home. And, Justin needs to figure out who he is but, when you have parents that give a 19 year old alcohol & prescription drugs the Apple doesn’t fall far from the tree

    • trina

      All music is talking about sex in some form of way unless you only listen to gospel.

      • Bernadette Thomas-Hewitt


    • Nho LXuv

      Exactly, our society is being poisoned by the various communication media and their lac of moral responsibility

    • Joanne1979

      Good for you. Glad you parent your child and don’t depend on entertainers. Beyonce’s music is not for children. Shame on the parents who depend on her or any other celebrity in regards to raising children with morals.

  • OneInFun

    I didnt know thugs listened to Beyonce. Learn something new everyday. Thanks, Bill O’ Reilly

  • Simone Rodrigues

    So she’s a thug now..really? no he wants to say N*&ger..SMH..He’s mad because a black woman has that much money and she’s MARRIED to a BLACK man doing what the HECK she wants and the world adores her.Exactly…what about Madonna and Lady GaGa???PLEASE

  • HUgrad13

    Why are people on here even trying to defend what O’Reilly is saying? His views are biased. I’m not saying there isn’t truth to what he saying, but because its him thats saying it, it holds no real merit. He has ulterior motives for attacking her, and you guys fell for it hook, line, and sinker. For God’s sake. In what world is Beyonce a thug?? Like what? We all know that is the new “N” word in disguise.

    • ambi

      because so many blacks still don’t get it either because they choose to be blind or are not smart enough to see that when BILL O says this is IS doing it to tear down blacks, put them down etc, he is a damn LIE if he says he ‘Missed” miley on the ball, please everyone and their grandma was talking about Miley NONSTOP for like a full YEAR and the same with JUSTIN peeing in hotel kitchen buckets etc. We won’t get ahead because blacks don’t study enough how ever day all day they try to break us down. I’m an not a big fan of Bey latest direction but yeah many have done it before, during and will do it after her

  • Kam

    I don’t really watch David Letterman, but I do appreciate him calling Bill O’Reilly out on his one sided views regarding the oversexualized culture that is pop music. It may not be correct, but its not just Beyonce who is guilty of this. Yes she has topped her career to where she shouldn’t have to sell sex to sell albums but the same can be said of Cher, and Madonna. People who complain about the harm it does on children should learn to police their children and not depend on everyone else to do it. “They will hear it at their friends, or at school if they don’t hear it at home” is not a valid rebuttal either but folks will say that all day long when it comes to what their kids hear, watch, and wear. Beyonce a thug, boy bye! Richard Sherman wasn’t lying was he.

  • AbigailTea

    Beyonce is not responsible for your kids and idiotic teens

  • Observe and Report

    My question is why is the only rebuttal to beyonce criticism is everyone’s else doing it/ So doe that make it anymore right , does it make it anymore detrimental to the community. I cant effin stand bill o’rielly but he actually made a point. Beyonce has reached a level of success that she shouldn’t have to still be selling sex to be relevant. Lets call it what it is while her musical content has gotten increasingly raunchy she has ALWAYS sold a sexed up image even back to her dc days. But any criticism against the queen is hating lmao oh the world we live in!

    • Chey

      But they don’t hear you though!!

  • Courtney Banks

    Sherman was right. White people use the word “thug” when they really mean to say something else.. How is beyonce even remotely a thug, besides the fact of her being black?

    • Angel89

      I was thinking the same thing

  • C

    I fully agree with O’Reillys point concerning the highly sexualized image of Beyonce. But its so funny to me that he’s so focused on her that Miley and Justin, both of which have an entire audience built solely on children/teens, go completely unnoticed. Why focus on just beyonce when ALL major artists right now are serving up a t and a show for the kiddies? If you’re going to talk about it, really talk about ALL of it and not just the black woman in the game and how she’s influencing “thugs”. And lets not talk about thugs when Justin is the leading the brigade. Good for Letterman to set this man straight on his otherwise bias views on what is wrong with pop culture.

    • Observe and Report

      Lets be honest beyonce has a MUCH larger reach as far as her audience than miley or beiber currently. And i think thats his point, justin and miley don’t really matter because their flames are slowly but surely burning to a fizzle. Beyonce on the other hand damn near has a whole generation follow up from Destiny’s Child over 15 years ago to the present. At the end of the day 20 years from now who do you think will still be a topic of discuss and who will be dismissed as trend/fad of the past?

      • ray

        bey is married. bill o’reily is a fuckin racist.

  • Cha Cha

    He’s criticizing Beyonce, and then talking about the African-American community and children being born out of wedlock… but Beyonce is married and it’s obvious that she is singing every song to her husband. She has never “pushed the envelope” until after she was married… Miley & Justin … well, yeah…

    • yeah

      I get that. However, she is an entertainer. She may be doing all this with her husband in mind, BUT the entire world is viewing it. Ciara and all the other black baby mamas in Hollywood would be better suited for his examples, but beyonce is the only (currently) trashy, black mother and entertainer in the limelight. So, I understand why he used her as an example.

      • Kiki R.

        I agree, and again, it doesn’t matter who he singled out to me, what matters is that it’s being done and being done more these days in the entertainment industry. Yes it’s been going on for years but not on the scale as it is happening now. The fact that he used Beyonce as an example instead of Miley or Justin B. does not lessen that fact.

        • trina

          Um excuse me. Where were you when Madonna had that Justify My Love album/ video. Out of everybody in this industry, Beyonce got the best reputation. They not saying nothing about Ri Ri screwing in the bathroom and other celebrities hoping from one person to the next (Taylor Swift and J Lo).

        • Joanne1979

          Bill is RACIST. Don’t go around agreeing with him disparaging a black woman if you yourself are black. That is just ridiculous. The fact that he didn’t want to speak on Justin and Miley spoke volumes. If you know anything about that pig, you’d know to never give him any points because he’ll use them to knock your whole race down. Problem with black people is we are never united. Jewish people stick together against others.

      • Krystle Hampton

        I don’t get the problem. A non-entertianer doing any of this is def not acceptable but actress and actors roll around or are in the buff all the time…and they all have kids. Its not Beyonce’s fault that parents are letting children listen to her music because they don’t want to listen to children’s music in the car with their children. The Game told his daughter not to sing “surfboard” but had her listening to the song? Unrealistic. Just like non African American people who are the majority of hip- hop music buyers not saying the N word when it comes up in a song. I hate double standards. Oh and to Bill O whatever, his opinion is and will always be irrelevant to me.

        • PEEKAY


        • Joanne1979


      • shaky1900

        You can’t logically single her out because everyone that is watching her knows that she is married and singing these songs to her husband. There is no one that listens to Beyonce’ that doesn’t know she is married. I understand that you may not agree with what she’s doing but to agree with Bill is unfathomable.

        Explain why he shouldn’t have used Miley Cyrus, young white girls are having children out of wedlock too. Little Miley is the trashy one with her little veal cutlets hanging out. When you read a book (non- fiction) and it gets a little steamy do you consider the person telling the story trashy? Probably not since you use your imagination to picture what you’re reading. The only difference here is that one is and actual picture (video) and the other is your imagination (so who’s trash then?).

        • Joanne1979

          Sometimes people are so jealous of Beyonce, they will side with a racist white man trying to bring her down. So sad.

    • MrsFoley

      I agree Cha Cha…. It’s sickening to keep hearing use Beyoncé as the “role model”.. parents need to “role model” their OWN children!!… Beyoncé is a PUBLIC entertainer….her JOB is to ENTERTAIN. And, yes….she started her career as a young, innocent teen–and her music reflected THAT! However, she is a GROWN woman now!! And, thus, her music/performance..reflects THAT! People also need to be mindful that those teens that she was singing for than—her adult woman, mothers, and wives NOW too!! We grow! And, thank God she’s grown with her craft as well. I can appreciate her music. Now, I’m a mother to a little 4 yr old girl–who likes Beyoncé as well. However, clearly….I wouldn’t share “Partition” or “Blow” with her. When were in the car, we listen to the younger verison of Beyoncé…lol I wonder did people critic Madonna, Marilyn Monroe—and other celebrities/entertainers who embraced their sexy?….But, S/O to Letterman for being unbiased and REAL!!

  • soisaid

    heel almighty is just trying to keep himself employed and on air. mostly all the white people who drag people down and ostricize them for ratings only to become hated look at other races and attack them only because they are making more money than them by using their own creativity to make money instead of cutting peoples head off to keep their heads on.