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Rachel Sklar

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Bill O'Reilly: The Backlash to the Blacklash

Bill O'Reilly
Bill O'Reilly's comments on his radio show about that time he dined at Sylvia's with Al Sharpton, as noted by Media Matters, caused such a furor earlier this week that last night CNN was prompted to ask:"Is Bill O'Reilly Comment on Race an Imus Moment?" Today, the rage faded a little, not because of O'Reilly's impassioned defense of himself but because it was so obvious from the tape that he was genuinely surprised by the fact that black people are just as civilized as white people. "Imus' 'nappy-headed hos' remark was clear-cut, shocking racism with a hefty dash of sexism to chase," wrote Rachel Sklar of Eat the Press. "O'Reilly's comments were ignorant as hell and betrayed so preconceived notions, that's for sure, but if you read his comments in full, they read like 'clueless white guy' rather than 'deliberate racist.'" But is it something more than cluelessness?

Rachel Sklar Available for All Your Quoting Needs

Rachel Sklar
There's already been much ado about Charlie Gibson's refusal to play along with Stephen Colbert's goofy "WristStrong" campaign, and the Times article that exposed the mini-controversy. Colbert asked the Gibson and Katie Couric and Brian Williams to wear bracelets on air in order to raise awareness of "wrist violence," and Katie and Brian, the fun anchors, are playing along. In the article Huffington Post media editor Rachel Sklar said their participation shows "good humor" and "humanity," and then Portfolio blogger Jeff Bercovici jumped on her for it — pointing out that the whole reason people like hearing the news from Charlie Gibson is because he isn't fun, he's serious. But our question is why was blogger Rachel Sklar quoted as a TV news expert in the first place? Why not someone with experience in the biz who could lend more insight — or an insider? Because the article was written by young Brian Stelter, a.k.a. the wunderkind behind the blog TVNewser, that's why. Before he was recently hired by the Gray Lady, he was Sklar's co-worker and buddy at Mediabistro. Silly Stetler — you can't just quote your friends. This is the Times, not the Observer! Two Out of Three Anchors Join Colbert in Wrist Stunt [NYT] Charlie Gibson Only Cool in the Ratings [Mixed Media]