Bill O’Reilly complained that he was a victim of religious discrimination because the “Killing Jesus” television movie, based on his book by the same name, received bad reviews from publications that he considers liberal.
“The truth is, it is open season on Christians in America, and faith is not held in high esteem in the halls of Manhattan media operations,” O’Reilly said.
The Fox News host suggested Monday night on his “O’Reilly Factor” program that critics should weigh his intentions in writing the book above its artistic merits, adherence to historical fact, and skillful use of dramatic elements.
“A movie like ‘Killing Jesus’ is a noble endeavor, even if you didn’t like it – even though some conservative folks didn’t like it, either,” O’Reilly said, promising to read negative comments from conservatives. “But to see what actually happened to a good man, Jesus, who preached loving your neighbor and loving God above all, to see how he was abused and murdered historically, right before your eyes, is a powerful use of the motion picture concept.”
He read an excerpt from a Guardian review that faulted the TV movie for promoting “O’Reilly’s patented conservative slant” on a historical event and “presenting salacious detail about Christ’s death and a Tea Party version of the son of God.”
A Boston Globe review cited by O’Reilly trashed “’Killing Jesus’ (as) a shallow telling of the Jesus story, with no more distinction than you might find in the generic reenactments of some historical documentary.”
O’Reilly allowed that critics had a right to disagree on the movie’s merits, but he dismissed negative reviews as “designed to promote ideology above all.”
He complained that religious conservatives were mocked for stating their views on same-sex marriage and other social issues.
“There is a struggle in this country for power, for freedom, and for life-affirming behavior,” O’Reilly said. “Judeo-Christian tradition is under assault – there’s no question about that.”
He said Christians are “murdered and abused” in some countries overseas, and he compared that oppression to the negative commentary some American Christians face when they venture into politics and media.
“Here in America we often see Christians marginalized, mocked, (and) portrayed as bigots and human-rights abusers,” O’Reilly said. “It’s time to push back on that. ‘Killing Jesus’ may have opened some eyes in that arena, and the left doesn’t like that at all.”
Watch the Fox News segment posted online by Media Matters:
Trump administration quietly guts COVID-19 paid leave provision that already excluded 75 percent of workers
The Trump administration has quietly issued new guidance that will exempt many small businesses from having to provide some workers with paid leave during the coronavirus pandemic.
The Department of Labor issued a temporary rule Wednesday that effectively exempted businesses with fewer than 50 workers from being required to provide 12 weeks of paid leave for workers whose children are suddenly at home from school or child care under the coronavirus stimulus package signed by President Donald Trump.
This article first appeared in Salon.
Trump is deploying national guardsman to provide pandemic support without any health benefits: report
The National Guard are an essential part of the fight against the coronavirus pandemic, and thousands of them have potentially been exposed to infected civilians, making it a particularly dangerous and important time to serve.
But according to The Daily Beast, the guard has been deployed in a way that prevents them from being eligible for the military's health care system.
"The approximately 20,000 guardsmen who have been called up to help states around the country deal with the spread of the coronavirus are federalized on what’s called Title 32 status, which puts them in command of their various state governors but with the federal government paying costs," wrote senior national security correspondent Spencer Ackerman. "But according to the National Guard’s advocates and the U.S. governors’ association, the guardsmen are activated on orders that last 30 days. That puts them one single day shy of the requirement allowing the military health insurance system known as TRICARE — think of it as Medicare For All In Uniform — to cover them."
Vaccine researchers grew ‘alarmed’ as Trump’s CDC wasted weeks of their time with a flawed coronavirus test: report
According to a report from the Washington Post, in the early days as health officials became concerned about the possibility of the COVID-19 pandemic blossoming out of China, researchers sat and wasted days they could have used to start developing a vaccine because they were assured by the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) that a testing kit was on its way.
As it turned out, that test was flawed.
Relying on emails and interviews, the Post is reporting, "On a Jan. 15 conference call, a leading scientist at the federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention assured local and state public health officials from across the nation that there would soon be a test to detect a mysterious virus spreading from China. Stephen Lindstrom told them the threat was remote and they may not need the test his team was developing 'unless the scope gets much larger than we anticipate,' according to an email summarizing the call."