Solidifying his status as one of the great jackasses of our time, Bill O’Reilly has taken up a new cause. He’s trying to make an undocumented Mexican murder suspect into this century’s Willie Horton, casting the “ultra-left” city of San Francisco in the role of Mike Dukakis.
O’Reilly’s effort to publicize the killing of a 31 year-old white woman named Kate Steinle, allegedly at the hands of an oft-deported immigrant named Juan Francisco Lopez-Sanchez, is turning into the surprise second act of Donald Trump’s ill-fated “Mexicans are murdering, raping monsters” campaign.
He’s even borrowing Trump’s flair for rhetoric. In the past week, he’s denounced a San Francisco councilman as a “pinhead” and compared Salon.com to the white supremacist site Stormfront. Both had downplayed O’Reilly’s crusade.
“Obviously, that responsibility [for protecting our borders] is not being met,” O’Reilly fumed. “And if you point that out, as Trump did, you are a racist, a piñata for the open-border crowd to bash!”
“The ultra-left is controlling [San Francisco],” he went on. “There comes a point where people get the government they deserve.”
Even by O’Reilly standards, it’s a circus. He’s got his audience worked up into a genuine terror of murderous immigrants. This is despite the fact that our domestic murder rate has plummeted during the Hispanic immigration wave, and every available statistic shows that immigrants commit serious crimes at a much lower rate than American-born citizens.
Factually speaking, in other words, the border-crossing menace story is a total nothingburger. It’s the 2015 version of the Summer of the Shark.
If you remember that story, media dingbats in 2001 turned a few gruesome shark attack stories into a larger furor about a supposed “epidemic” of deadly episodes. They kept it up even as scientists told them that it was actually a down year for killer sharks.
This is the same thing, but with racism. Are these good times or what?
O’Reilly, of course, doesn’t care about the numbers. His schtick is about politics and ratings, and there’s no easier way to score frightened suburban viewers than to tell them that a) Mexicans are trying to kill their granddaughters, and b) Barack Obama and his liberal cronies in limp-wristed San Francisco are their accomplices.
It’s a backlash against a backlash, a backdoor way of saying that Trump was right about those rape-happy Hispanic immigrants. Sean Hannity is already expressing this sentiment out loud, as is Megyn Kelly.
The background is complicated. Earlier this month, the undocumented Lopez-Sanchez allegedly shot and killed Steinle, who was on San Francisco’s Pier 14 with her father.
Lopez-Sanchez had already been deported five times. He had also previously been picked up by ICE, which turned him over to the local sheriff’s department to be processed on an ancient drug charge.
The sheriff then dropped the charge and released Lopez-Sanchez, despite the fact that ICE wanted him turned back over to the federal government.