Tags: Ferguson in Crisis | Fox News | Bill O’Reilly | Athletes | LeBron James | protest

O'Reilly: Athletes Should Understand What They're Protesting

By    |   Tuesday, 09 December 2014 09:20 AM

"Pro athletes have a responsibility to know what they’re talking about before they protest on the company dime," according to "The O’Reilly Factor’s" Bill O’Reilly, who discussed with guest Charles Krauthammer Monday night’s protest by several NBA players who warmed up in T-shirts that read "I Can’t Breathe."

Before the start of Monday night’s game between the Cleveland Cavaliers and the Brooklyn Nets, which took place at the Barclays Center, players LeBron James, Kyrie Irving and others donned the shirts, in a nod to Eric Garner, the New York man who died in a police chokehold while resisting arrest for selling untaxed cigarettes.

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The crowd broke out in applause and cheers when they saw the shirts, according to CNN.

Last week, five members of the St. Louis Rams walked onto the field with the "hands up, don't shoot" gesture used by protesters of the August police shooting of teenager Michael Brown in Ferguson, Missouri. Grand jury testimony showed that Brown, who had just stolen cigarillos from a local store, attacked the officer before being shot to death.

In both cases, grand juries declined to indict the white police officers.

Krauthammer disagreed with O’Reilly, saying the NBA T-shirt gesture was a perfectly good use of the player’s celebrity. Other professions do it all the time, he noted, including movie stars, priests and scientists.

Additionally, he said, "there are people in the public eye who all the time talk about things they don’t know about."

He cited 2008 presidential candidate and former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton saying in an October speech that corporations and businesses don’t create jobs.

"I don’t expect an elaborate legal exegesis on a case from the best ball player in the NBA," Krauthammer said about James, but if he wants to say by wearing a T-shirt that the case of Eric Garner disturbs him, that’s acceptable.

O’Reilly countered that when athletes are in an arena where people have paid money to attend, the players ought to articulate why they are protesting. He said the Rams players could not do that, pointing out that grand jury testimony and forensic evidence debunked the notion that Brown had his hands up and was surrendering when he was shot.

Their protest "was based on a fallacy," O’Reilly said.

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"Pro athletes have a responsibility to know what they're talking about before they protest on the company dime," according to "The O'Reilly Factor's" Bill O'Reilly, who discussed Monday night's protest by several NBA players.
Bill O’Reilly, Athletes, LeBron James, protest
Tuesday, 09 December 2014 09:20 AM
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