Homeless Vets Prepare to Block Bill O'Reilly's Shot
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Wednesday afternoon, John Edwards suspended his candidacy for President, vowing to "never forget" the poverty-stricken Americans he so passionately stood up for, and beseeching the remaining candidates - indeed, all Americans - to continue the work that he termed "the cause of [his] life." This afternoon in New York City, some of that work will resolutely continue, as a group of homeless veterans - one of the segments of the population of forgotten Americans that Edwards spoke of so often on the stump - will swarm FOX News Channel's Studios to bring their fight to Bill O'Reilly, the millionaire celebrity host of The O'Reilly Factor.
O'Reilly, who regularly defamed Edwards as a phony, has a lot to answer for. In attacks on the former North Carolina Senator, O'Reilly has repeatedly belittled his compassion, issued inflammatory statements and mocking attacks, and denied both the "existence and significance" of homeless veterans. As recently as January 16, O'Reilly took to the airwaves to rain ridicule upon Edwards, saying, "Well, we're still looking for all the veterans sleeping under the bridges,...so if you find anybody, let us know." As we reported two days later, Robert Greenwald and his crew at Brave New Films did exactly that.
Now, a group from Fitzgerald House, an "organization representing homeless veterans," plans to bring their fight for recognition to Fox's doorstep. They plan on visiting the Fox News Channel Studios today at 3:00 pm, and will come carrying a petition signed by 17,000 people demanding an apology from O'Reilly for his ignorance and abuse. In a press release, Brave New Films and Fitzgerald House say thay "have found that it is very easy to locate homeless veterans and are willing to help O'Reilly find them if his desire to help homeless vets is sincere."
Jason Linkins is an associate editor at the Huffington Post, based in Washington, DC.