O'Reilly claimed, Malkin agreed that CA proposal to teach LGBT history would prevent teachers from "say[ing] bad things about Jeffrey Dahmer" because he was "a gay cannibal"May 9, 2006 4:26 PM EDT ››› JULIE MILLICAN
During the May 8 broadcast of Fox News' The O'Reilly Factor, host Bill O'Reilly claimed that, under a California state bill that would require textbooks to recognize the accomplishments of historical lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender [LGBT] figures, "if you are a teacher ... you're not going to be able to say bad things about [convicted murderer] Jeffrey Dahmer," because Dahmer was "a gay cannibal." Conservative columnist Michelle Malkin agreed that O'Reilly's evaluation of the proposed legislation's impact was "right," adding that it "is a very radical, very extreme, dangerous bill" that "is pure political propaganda." O'Reilly called the bill "a form of fascism ... [i]n the sense that you have to say good things about this group."
In fact, the proposal "would add the role and contributions of LGBT people" to the list of "traditionally underrepresented groups," whose historical contributions, under current law, are required to be included in California "textbooks and other school instructional materials." As an April 16 report by the San Francisco Chronicle noted, the bill -- which the Los Angeles Times called "a textbook lesson in political meddling" -- would "require California public school textbooks to include gay and lesbian history" by adding sexual orientation to an existing law that requires textbooks to identify the gender and ethnicity of historical figures who contributed to "the economic, political and social development of California and the United States of America, with particular emphasis on portraying the role of these groups in contemporary society." Nothing in the bill would prevent a teacher from saying "bad things about Jeffrey Dahmer."
From the May 8 broadcast of Fox News' The O'Reilly Factor:
MALKIN: Well, this is much more radical than ensuring that homosexuals and other people of minority sexual orientation status are respected in the schools. It's already against the law in California to discriminate against anyone based on their sexual orientation.
I looked at this bill over very closely, and it is a very radical, very extreme, dangerous bill. It says that no teacher can even say anything that would, quote unquote, "reflect adversely" on anyone, a historical figure, whatever, based on their sexual orientation.
And so, now, there are real concerns that this could be interpreted broadly in the liberal Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals and other liberal courts, as saying that you can't even have sports teams, for example, that discriminate based on gender. And this is pure political propaganda.
O'REILLY: Well -- and also, if you are a teacher, what are you -- you're not going to be able to say bad things about Jeffrey Dahmer? He's a cannibal, a gay cannibal, and you can't say, "Well, that's wrong." I mean, if what you're saying is true, teachers would not be able to cast aspersions on even villains if they were homosexual.
MALKIN: Yeah, that's right. And in any case, I think school teachers in California and everywhere else ought to be paying more attention to whether or not third graders can find, oh, Sacramento or Washington, D.C., on a map than what the sexual orientation is of historical figures in America.
It's actually kind of hypocritical, because I thought that the gay rights lobbyists were all for privacy and keeping things in the bedroom. And here they are on this crusade to out people in some sort of weird, twisted way to boost the self-esteem of gay students? I don't get it.
O'REILLY: All right. Kirsten, maybe you do.
KIRSTEN POWERS (Democratic strategist): Well, I think -- I understand the impulse behind it, and what Michelle was talking about, about not being able to say anything negative about someone who is gay is just -- it's completely ridiculous, and it's -- it goes against, I think, every, you know, value we have in terms of free speech.
O'REILLY: Isn't it a form of fascism -- and I don't use that word lightly -- for California or anybody else, any other state, to be mandating that a certain lesson pattern be embraced by teachers? In the sense that you have to say good things about this group. That's not intellectual freedom, is it?
POWERS: Well, it's not intellectual freedom. But it's not only liberals or Californians --
O'REILLY: But isn't that a form of fascism? Government's not in the business of telling teachers to say good things about a group, is it?