For most people, FOX News analyst Bill O’Reilly is a completely polarizing figure. Folks either love him or hate him; very few can find the middle ground. I guess that puts me in the minority here, because I don’t feel strongly about him one way or the other. I actually agree with some of the things he says, and disagree with others. Moreover, I sometimes find his caustic delivery to be grating, but I try to look past that to get to the message.
I suppose that’s one of the reasons I find O’Reilly’s books to be more tolerable than his TV show: I can just read his opinions without having him shout them at me through my television. In addition, his books are usually quick and easy to read, so I was hoping Culture Warrior, published in 2006, would follow along the same lines as its predecessors. It did.
Short summary: FOX News analyst Bill O’Reilly thinks there’s a very important war taking place on American soil right now. It’s a culture war, and is being waged between the “secular-progressives” and the traditionalists.
The secular-progressives, led by people such as George Soros, George Lakoff, Al Franken, Howard Dean, and Nancy Pelosi, fully support changes that O’Reilly believes will hurt the country. For example, secular-progressives oppose all public displays of religious values; want the government to support all of its citizens from the cradle to the grave; believe that it’s fair to heavily tax the rich in order to redistribute wealth to the poor; and hold individual self-expression to be more important than behaving responsibly.
The traditionalists, according to O’Reilly, pretty much take an opposing stance on all of the above issues.
O’Reilly then gives lots of specific examples of the secular-progressives in action, while providing commentary about why he thinks everything they do is detrimental to the country. He also outlines a gameplan that he feels traditionalists ought to follow in order to fend off future secular-progressive attacks.
It’s important for traditionalists to step up now, O’Reilly continues, because the secular-progressives are targeting America’s children. And since most of Hollywood, the traditional print media, and cable and television networks fall squarely in the secular-progressive camp, getting their message out is easier than ever.
My Reaction: First of all, I want to say that I agree with some of the points O’Reilly made in this book — particularly those about the ACLU. I cannot stand the ACLU, and think they direct too much of their energy “protecting” the civil liberties of people and organizations that don’t deserve it, while simultaneously trampling on the liberties of those they oppose.
O’Reilly gave several examples of this, including the case where the ACLU defended the rights of the North American Man-Boy Love Association to promote and distribute child pornography. ACLU defended NAMBLA despite the fact that a man killed and raped a young boy after being “inspired” by NAMBLA literature. That just sickens me, and I truly feel that there’s no place in this world for an organization like NAMBLA. Come on.
But despite agreeing with O’Reilly about the ACLU and NAMBLA, I thought he went way overboard about a lot of other issues. In fact, some of the things he said were so over-the-top that I at first thought he was joking. But no, I think he’s serious about everything.
Overall, I felt that Culture Warrior was a very interesting (and sometimes entertaining) read. I wouldn’t recommend it if O’Reilly turns your stomach, obviously, but if you like him or at least can tolerate reading about his point of view, then you might enjoy this book too.