WTF? Bill O'Reilly just called Mexicans "wetbacks!"

So I was surfing around tonight and I came across resident Fox News demagogue Bill O’Reilly interviewing some politician about the drug traffic from Mexico. O’Reilly, as usual, was advocating total warfare on Mexicans coming over the border and calling for the (illegal) use of the military to try to stop drug smugglers. I’ve heard his kill-all-the-Mexicans rant before, and I was about to change the channel when this little gem came out of his mouth:

“Well, the Mexican wetbacks…or mules, or whatever you want to call them…”

Wetbacks? WETBACKS?

I knew O’Reilly was an ass, but I didn’t know he was such an ignorant ass. He didn’t seem to have any idea that he had said anything objectionable.

Have I slipped into an alternate universe where the term “wetback” is no longer pejorative and racist?

Fuck you, O’Reilly, once again you have proven yourself to be television’s foremost ass-monkey!

Yes, I caught that as well. Couldn’t believe my ears. Sent him an e-mail, which hopefully will be one of many thousands to berate the prick.

Ah boy. This even tops Brit Hume’s blowjob reference.

Well, the term “wetback” refers specifically to illegal immigrants who get “wet backs” in the process of crossing the Rio Grande so as to enter the US undetected. (Isn’t that right?)

So, as a matter of semantics, he was accurate. (Not that that’s OK.)

Well, as a matter of semantics, Ian Thorpe’s a wetback.

I meant Shepard Smith. Sorry. And I fired off an e-mail as well.

Troy McClure SF
A lot of racial pejoratives had prosaic origins. “wop” was an acronym for “without papers.” "Kike"is from the Yiddish word “keikl” which means circle. Jews had their papers marked with a circle (supposedly to represent a Star of David) at Ellis island.

That doesn’t make these terms acceptable (as you noted yourself).

I sent an email too. I hope he gets deluged.

Troy, it is a slur. A nasty, derogatory, racist comment.

There are many examples of slurs that are “technically correct”; that does not make them any less offensive.

I heard that Without Papers thing is an urban legend. Not that it really matters.

Hell, “Nigger” was just a mispronounciation of “negro”, which is the Spanish word for black, but that doesn’t make THAT okay.

I’m afraid Bill is going to slammed for this…

Maybe if we are lucky he will deign to (not quite of course) apologise in his uniquely snide and smarmy way.

I knew I should have Snopesed that little tidbit before I posted it. You are correct, of course. According to the acronym story is bullshit.

The “keikl” thing seems to hold up though.

Comrade Diogenes:

We have dicussed this before. When you post such obviously false accusations about a leading and well-respected pundit, you open yourself and the Central Committee to…just a second…what…what!!…are you shitting me!..

Burn this message before reading. Carry on.

Commissar elucidator.

Sorry, who’s Ian Thorpe?

And would Col. Tom Parker have qualified as a wetback? One presumes he crossed some significant amount of water to arrive here.


He’s an Aussie swimmer. Wet. Get it?

Illegal Immigrants. Mules. Drug Runners. Traffickers. Better?

Ian Thorpe is a phenomenal young Australian swimmer. Although freestyle is his specialty, he is very good at the backstroke as well.

I think we’re going to get a look at Bill O’Reilly’s backstroke tomorrow. :wink:

I seriously doubt he is going to get slammed on this. He says “wetbacks” every single time he talks about the issue of illegal immigration, and it hasn’t been an issue, yet.

Are you sure about this? I’ve heard a lot O’Reilly’s rants about the border, but I’ve never actually heard the word “wetback” before.

I watch him every night. I’ve heard it several times.