Rosie O’Donnell has become the latest voice to weigh in on Bill O’Reilly’s recent controversial appearance on ABC’s The View.
O’Donnell took to the airwaves on her Sirius satellite radio program Friday to explain that hosts of the popular ABC show should have expected O’Reilly to “incite kind of hatred.”
Co-hosts Joy Behar and Whoopi Goldberg walked off the set of The View Thursday after O’Reilly said that “Muslims killed us on 9/11.” The Fox News host was objecting to an Islamic cultural central that is planned near Ground Zero.
Barbara Walters chastised her fellow co-hosts but also said that O’Reilly should have made the distinction that Muslim extremists committed the 9/11 terrorist acts.
After Behar and Goldberg returned, O’Reilly offered an apology. “If anyone felt that I was demeaning all Muslims, I apologize,” he said.
O’Donnell told her listeners the following day that producers of the show knew O’Reilly would do something controversial.
“Bill O’Reilly, what does he do beside incite kind of hatred?” asked O’Donnell. “That’s what Bill O’Reilly does. Why would you book him?”
“How do you not wash your hands and walk away from someone whose book is called ‘Pinheads and Patriots,’ just a black and white kind of binary thing with a picture of President Obama on there?” asked O’Donnell’s co-host. “He’s not there to have discourse. He’s there to have a fight.”
“So why is it Joy and Whoopi’s fault for saying ‘We don’t want to engage in this’?”
As a former co-host of the view, O’Donnell tried to shed some light on the atmosphere behind the scenes. “It’s such a strange atmosphere over there at that show. I don’t think it can ever be articulated to anyone who has not experienced it.”
“The fact that Barbara Walters could feel that she should be able to scold the Oscar-Grammy-Emmy Award-winning Whoopi Goldberg and the 60-year-old Joy Behar on TV is kind of strange.”
The following audio is from Sirius’ The Rosie O’Donnell Show, broadcast Oct. 15, 2010.