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.