One of the startlingly inconvenient truths about America is the double standard by which conservative women can be treated by the media compared to their liberal sisters.
Having been seriously besmirched by far-left MSNBC commentator Ed Schultz earlier in the week, talk radio's Laura Ingraham discussed sexist and racist hypocrisies with Fox News's Bill O'Reilly Thursday (video follows with transcript and commentary):
BILL O’REILLY, HOST: Now for the top story tonight. As you may know, the Comcast Corporation recently purchased NBC News from GE. One of the first things that happened in the transition was the firing of a hateful commentator at MSNBC. But that did not stop the vitriol at that network and yesterday MSNBC commentator Ed Schultz was suspended.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
ED SCHULTZ, MSNBC: On my radio show yesterday I used vile and inappropriate language when talking about talk show host Laura Ingraham. I am deeply sorry, and I apologize. It was wrong, uncalled for, and I recognize the severity of what I said. I apologize to you, Laura, and ask for your forgiveness.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
O’REILLY: And joining us now from Washington is Laura Ingraham. So, let me set this up. You had criticized President Obama mildly on "Fox & Friends" for taking a Guinness while the storms are going on in Missouri and Oklahoma. Mr. Schultz took exception to that saying that Ronald Reagan drank a Guinness or whatever he said and then attacked you personally. But now he’s apologized. So how do you react?
LAURA INGRAHAM: Yeah, on my radio show this morning I said apology accepted. You know, he apologizes, I'm going to accept his apology. And when this thing went down, I got an email about it, Bill, and I have got to say it's sad but I -- I wasn't all that surprised. If this is what I think conservative women and to some extent African-American men who happen to be conservative and even Latinos who are conservative routinely deal with. And I'm not good at playing the victim. That's not who I am. That's not what I do. But I hope that in the future, if Ed wants to, you know, or anyone wants to criticize what I have to say, that's fine, or tease me in a humorous fashion, but those words were, you know, kind of eighth grade.
O’REILLY: Yeah, that’s unacceptable. You know what I did today? I called the White House and I want you to get you and Schultz and the President out in the little and have a few beers in the backyard. Can we do that? I mean, you’d show up for that.
INGRAHAM. Yeah. Beer summit.
O’REILLY: I want to be there.
INGRAHAM: Oh no. As long as you’re buying. I’m not into Guinness, though. It's got to be American beer.
O’REILLY: One more question because I do want to talk to you about Sarah Palin in a moment. One more question on this. I believe if General Electric had still owned NBC there would have been no apology and no suspension, okay, because General Electric and Jeff Zucker the, then he was fired, too, czar at NBC. They encouraged this kind of stuff, this personal attack stuff for years and years and years, because they didn't have anything else, and then it was the only way they could get an audience. Schultz, I think just, he kind of flashback to the old days, because Comcast isn't going to stand for this. And then he got caught up in it. But if this had been three years ago, nothing would have happened in my opinion.
INGRAHAM: Yeah, I mean, lots of things are said on cable television, but I think we know, Bill, if had any conservative host said, used those words against a, someone like a Michelle Obama or some other well-known liberal woman, I mean, it wouldn't. The boxes would have been outside.
O’REILLY: Every woman’s group in the world. Had NOW contacted you by the way? Did NOW get in touch with you?
INGRAHAM: No, NOW not as far as I know, but the Women’s Law, the Women's Media Center which is a liberal group did come out saying that was…
O’REILLY: Good for them.
INGRAHAM: …as did another couple of liberal groups. That’s fine.
This is spot on, and exemplifies the double standard by which conservative women and right-leaning minorities are allowed to be treated by media in this country compared to their liberal brethren.
In America, liberal women and liberal minorities are a protected class. A conservative deigns to say anything derogatory about them even in jest does so at his or her peril.
But conservative women and minorities can be ridiculed with almost total impunity.
Consider what the left has done to Sarah Palin since the moment she was named as John McCain's running mate in August 2008. There's no chance a liberal woman would have been treated this way.
Quite the contrary, if Palin was a Democrat governor named as Barack Obama's running mate, she would have been put on a pedestal by the same folks that mercilessly ridiculed her including Charlie Gibson, Katie Couric, and Tina Fey.
Condoleezza Rice is another example of a conservative woman who would be exceedingly revered and esteemed by America's media if she was a liberal. Since she's not, it's completely acceptable for her to be trashed by all comers.
As further evidence of the double standard, consider that in 2007, radio's Don Imus made a joke about a group of black, female, college basketball players that most of the nation likely never heard of. Within days, he was fired.
Four years later, a liberal radio host made a highly derogatory slur about a conservative woman - not in a joking fashion, mind you, but quite seriously - and he got suspended for a week while the ladies of ABC's "The View" joked about how his offense was really nothing to take too seriously.
This certainly wouldn't have been the case if Ingraham was a liberal.
Tough to imagine this double standard exists in the year 2011, isn't it?