If you watched Fox News on Monday night, you may have noticed two separate anchors criticizing the actions of the group behind the “Draw Mohammed” cartoon contest in the span of ten minutes. Greta Van Susteren ended her show by scolding the American Freedom Defense Initiative and its founder Pamela Geller for putting law enforcement at risk, and mere moments later, Bill O’Reilly kicked off his program by repeatedly saying what Geller and the AFDI did was “stupid.”
O’Reilly burnished his own anti-jihadist credentials as he said, “Insulting the entire Muslim world is stupid… It does not advance the cause of liberty or get us any closer to defeating the savage jihad.”
In fact, O’Reilly argued that it actually “hurts the cause” to fight jihad, and Laura Ingraham agreed with him that it isn’t “beneficial.” Neither of them discounted the importance of the free speech, but as far as O’Reilly’s concerned, that’s “not in play” here.
Ingraham also called it “stupid” to intentionally provoke like that, and cited what Pope Francis said about Charlie Hebdo, that it’s “rude [and] unnecessary.” O’Reilly concluded, “Just because you can say it doesn’t mean you should say it.”