Media Analyst Goldberg: 'I'd Fire' Sharpton for Distorting O'Reilly

Thursday, 12 Dec 2013 04:47 PM

By Cynthia Fagen

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Two prominent media analysts said that MSNBC host Al Sharpton should be fired for maliciously editing a video of Fox News host Bill O'Reilly that made him appear to scorn Nelson Mandela's legacy.

Media pundit Bernie Goldberg, a former CBS reporter, said on Fox News' "The O'Reilly Factor" if it were his call, "I'd fire him," for Friday's deceptive video clip on MSNBC's "PoliticsNation" in which O'Reilly, speaking on his show, "The O'Reilly Factor" is cut off after saying Mandela was "a communist."

"Ninety-five years old. Nelson Mandela, I have spent some time in South Africa, he was a communist, this man. He was a communist, all right? "

Story continues below video.

In fact, in the unedited version, O'Reilly continues to praise the peacemaker.

"But he was a great man. What he did for his people was stunning. The sacrifices that he made. He could have repudiated and got out of that prison. He wouldn't do it."

Howard Kurtz, host of "Media Buzz" on Fox News also lambasted Sharpton for being dishonest.

"They are malicious attempts to deceive viewers when they cut you off after you call Nelson Mandela a communist, which he was briefly, and didn't let you continue the thought on tape that he was a great man.

"Sharpton has always worn two hats on MSNBC: civil rights activist , some would say racial ambulance chaser."

Goldberg added that MSNBC would be too afraid to fire Sharpton, a Harlem firebrand with local democratic roots, "because who the hell knows what he is going to say the next day after they fire him or what he's going to do. They're not going to take that chance I don’t think."

On his show on Wednesday Sharpton responded, " "I don't think playing his 'great man' comment changes the context or the fact that on the night of Nelson Mandela's death, Bill O'Reilly called him a communist." He said it was an "effort to impugn" Mandela's legacy.

"For some on the right, they can't just praise him. They have to balance praise with unfair efforts to disparage him," Sharpton said.

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