Radio host Tavis Smiley on Wednesday night joined “The O’Reilly Factor” to debate the Fox News show’s host, Bill O’Reilly, over police misconduct.
At the beginning of the show, O’Reilly said that with new technology, it’s “easy for cop haters to demonize the entire law enforcement community,” according to a clip highlighted by Mediaite. He criticized those who believe that selling illegal drugs is a nonviolent crime and said that these “insane views of the world can poison actual societies.”
O’Reilly added that while police abuse should be punished, law enforcement officers do not target minorities as part of a larger attempt at “organized injustice.”
Later in the program, Smiley challenged O’Reilly’s statements, arguing that people protesting police misconduct are not “anti-police,” but “anti-police misconduct.”
After a heated debate about the “war on drugs” and mass incarceration, Smiley and O’Reilly shifted their conversation to police and use of force.
“Do you believe that police agencies around the country are targeting young black men to hurt them?” O’Reilly asked Smiley.
“I do not,” Smiley responded. “What I do believe is that too often in these conversations you and others suggest every time one of these incidents happens, that it’s an isolated incident.”
“How many isolated incidents equal a pattern?” Smiley asked O’Reilly.
O’Reilly said that he couldn’t answer the question., prompting Smiley to accused the Fox host of “dodging” the question.
“It’s an impossible question to answer with any certainty,” O’Reilly explained.
Smiley then said that it is “offensive” to suggest that there isn’t a pattern of police using excessive force during arrests.
Watch the clip via YouTube: