Political pundits Bill O'Reilly and Rush Limbaugh have taken a dash to the airwaves to defend the shooter in the Trayvon Martin case, even before the full details of the shooting are known. On his show on Tuesday O'Reilly even went so far as to question whether the teenager was innocent.
Evidence has proved that Martin was unarmed when he was shot and killed by George Zimmerman in February and outrage over his death and the failure of the local police to mount an investigation against Zimmerman created a media firestorm last week.
Martin's hastily released high school record drew criticism from multiple commentators, who asked what it had to do with Zimmerman's decision to shoot him.
But on his show on Tuesday O'Reilly insisted Martin's record was relevant: 'Basically, it’s emerging that Trayvon had some problems,' O'Reilly claimed in a report on the Huffington Post. 'And the family does object to that. In a case of this magnitude, shouldn’t the public know the history of Trayvon? Is there anything wrong with knowing that he was suspended three times from school?'
Critics have replied that many students have problems at school, but none justify being targeted for death.
'In the beginning, Trayvon was portrayed by sympathetic media as somebody who was just an innocent victim walking around,' O'Reilly continued adding that one observer claimed to have seen a scuffle between Martin and Zimmerman, and that the police report noted that Zimmerman had injuries - although that claim was contradicted by camera footage released yesterday that appeared to show Zimmerman unharmed.
Meanwhile fellow conservative pundit Rush Limbaugh saw an opportunity to sideswipe President Obama over the case. Citing the presidents response to news of the killing, Limbaugh scoffed that the president was using the teenager's death for an unspecified 'political opportunity.'
'This poor kid was shot and the President of the United States only public reaction was 'Mind you, if I had a son he’d look like that?' Limbaugh snorted. 'For what purpose does one say that? And what must you be thinking about this situation to think that and then say it?'
According to the Huffington Post Limbaugh then linked the president to an article on race he'd read in the National Review written by Jay Nordlinger.
Nordlinger's article claims that all liberals are obsessed with race. 'What if the victim had been of Chinese ancestry, or a freckly red-headed Irish-American kid, or a kinky-haired Jewish piano student? What Barack Obama’s offspring would look like: Isn’t that the least important thing about the Trayvon Martin case?'
The idea that Martin was a black male wearing a hoodie who had been pursued by a neighborhood watch volunteer was completely irrelevant, Limbaugh implied. The teenager's death was not about race and he scoffed at the suggestion that racism could have played a part at all.
'Sorry, the last thing that ever occurs to me when someone gets shot is that they look like me. It doesn't compute, but the left, they see things like this purely as surface matters. These are political opportunities for these people. That's the sad thing about this.'
Left wingers are racist because they decry racism. They are racist because they even contemplate it could have been a factor in Martin's killing, Limbaugh suggested.
'Here you have the death of an American citizen that seems a political opportunity,' he added. 'There’s no humanity in that.'
Here's the Fox report: