Bill O’Reilly Broadcasts Cameron’s “Lifespan” Statistic Unchallenged

Jim Burroway

July 12th, 2007

A few weeks ago, Bill O’Reilly’s program became something of a laughingstock for raising the specter of 150 lesbian gangs wreaking havoc in Washington, D.C. O’Reilly’s guest, Rod Wheeler, who gave that scenario, has since apologized and O’Reilly has had to eat crow over it.

Just last night, O’Reilly’s program became a platform for another bogus statistic, this one from discredited “researcher” Paul Cameron, whose comparison of homosexuality to smoking made it on the air without challenge.

The segment on O’Reilly’s program focused on the San Diego Padres’ decision to hold a Gay Pride Night while giving away hats to children. Sandy Rios, formerly of the Concerned Women for America and currently of the Culture Campaign, took the anti-gay side. Ron Deharte of San Diego Pride defended the Padres’ decision. During the three-way interview, the screen showed numerous scenes of gay couples, some holding hands, hugging and kissing. O’Reilly exploded near the end of the segment, calling those scenes “exhibitionistic.” This was clearly the case of two against one, with the calm-spoken Deharte trying to make his points between the shouting.

Sandy Rios complained about the “mixing” of children with gay couples, saying it sent the wrong message:

Sandy Rios: But let me just give you another way to think about this. What if the San Diego Padres decided to celebrate a “smoking is fun” night, and they had a smoking men’s chorus performing. Now there are a lot of people that come to the game and they have a pack of cigarettes or whatever, maybe they can’t smoke there. But that’s different than celebrating smoking because we all know is that smoking is really harmful to your health. Well, what people don’t understand is that the homosexual lifestyle, especially for men, is deadly. It takes their life ten to twenty years earlier than straight men. That is not what we should be promoting before of our children… [Emphasis mine]

Bill O’Reilly: But that’s their decision…

The connection of homosexuality to the dangers of smoking and a reduced lifespan comes directly from discredited researcher Paul Cameron. He first claimed that gay men die at the average age of 42 and lesbians die at 44 in 1993. That claim, based on his “obituary study,” has been roundly discredited.

More recently, Cameron claimed that official statistics from Denmark and Norway show that gays and lesbians die twenty-four years earlier than their straight counterparts. When he released that self-published study, he issued a press release comparing that statistic to smoking:

Studies have shown that years of smoking shortens the lifespan of the smoker from 1 to 7 years. But analysis of the age of death in Norway and Denmark for gays who are legally married suggests that engaging in homosexual behavior reduces the lifespan by 24 years.

That study was also based on faulty science. Not only that, but Cameron claimed that he presented the paper to the Eastern Psychological Association. That claim earned him a rebuke from the EPA’s president, Phil Hineline. That EPA censure comes after rebukes by three other professional organizations during the course of Cameron’s career.

His problems don’t end there however. Cameron advocates a draconian agenda for gays and lesbians in this country, and points to Nazi Germany for evidence on how to “deal” with gay men. His Family Research Institute web site makes no bones about the fact that everything he does is driven by his goal to recriminalize homosexuality in this country as a felony, and he continues to defend his call to quarantine everyone who is HIV-positive.

There are no current valid studies to suggest a reduced lifespan for gays or lesbians. O’Reilly, of the “we report, you decide” network, allowed a false statistic to air unchallenged. As he did for the lesbian gang story, Bill O’Reilly needs to correct the misinformation that aired on his program and apologize to the gay community for Sandy Rios’ slander. The Rampaging Lesbian Gang story was funny; death isn’t.

Hat tip: David Roberts

Update: Sure enough, Culture Campaign cites Cameron on their web site. That’s another one added to the list.

Timothy Kincaid

July 12th, 2007

Could the pride group have found a worse spokesman? He didn’t speak at all, even when envited to.

David Roberts

July 12th, 2007

I thought the same thing. Definitely not the person to go up against a nut like Rios and in that venue to boot. I thought I would fall over when she used the example of “a smoker’s choir.” She should marry Cameron.


July 12th, 2007

That O’Reilly hit piece was surely a comedy routine. . .especially with Ms. Rios struggling so desperately to continue claiming to possess morals while quoting a discredited piece of manure from a discredited researcher.

In O’Reilly’s case, he really has no business making moral pronouncements about anyone hugging. I suppose, given his own history, which includes accusations of rather explicit sexually-motivated and harassing phone calls to an employee, the thought of hugging or kissing someone might be somehow “exhibitionist” in nature . Right.

As for the baseball game, this “protest” is more manufactured than the phony “war on Christmas.” I’m sure O’Reilly didn’t show, for example, the protester calling people “stupid idiots” for going into the ballpark despite his “christian” direction – nor the protester who claimed that ONLY ‘Christians” are allowed to judge others. No concern about religious coercion or unseemly public behavior in front of children on that side at all.

Perhaps someone should have reminded Ms. Rios that children come from heterosexual intercourse, and any event featuring them is a celebration of heterosexual intercourse pride. While that may fly in the face of the more certain conservative belief that babies come from storks, I think society has proven them wrong.

But the point here is that it appears Pride Night celebrated heterosexuality quite grandly, as every event always does, complete with freebie giveaways to the products of heterosexual intercourse. So what is their objection? That the word “gay” was there, and that a “gay” men’s chorus sang the national anthem? Well, children use the word “gay” for all sorts of things, so i doubt that would make much connection. And as for affection (hugging, kissing) – seems like a lot of parents and family members do that. After all, in the clip I saw of the O’Reilly segment, we don’t KNOW those on camera were necessarily gay or lesbian – we just see two people hugging or kissing. I doubt Fox dragged its cameras around asking people if they were gay before assigning them that designation – wouldn’t it be grand if one couple came forward and said “uh no. . .this is my best friend”…or “no…this is my cousin?”

But someone needs to make something very, very clear to Fox News and Sandy Rios – the only people flapping their gums about sex, sexuality and sexual acts at this game were the protesters outside and their fliers . . .which, by the way, more children were likely to read before parental intervention.

So who are the real perverts here?

By the way, here is a youtube clip of part of the “christian” protest. . .in my opinion, the bullying demeanor is appalling:


July 12th, 2007

Oh…I nearly forgot. If I have to link to the hatemonger clip, I should at least give ya’ll the pleasure of seeing a youtube clip of the gay men’s chorus performance.

They sounded very, very good!


July 12th, 2007

Oops…sorry…I missed one point.

It appears to me that the only people. .. the ONLY people using the word “SEX” on that night were the “Christians” trying to alarm families and ask them to leave.

Now do tell me – how many parents even use the word SEX in front of their children? Yet these blowhards were screaming it at families as they walked into the ballpark.

Again – who are the real perverts?


July 12th, 2007

Bill O’Reilly’s program only became a laughing stock a few weeks ago? And here I’ve been laughing at it for years.

Timothy Kincaid

July 12th, 2007


Thanks for the link to the choir. They were great. And it sounded like the audience thought so too.

Emily K

July 12th, 2007

It’s a tactic of Fox News Channel to invite weak liberals whenever they present “both” sides. What a loathsome group of people.

Lynn David

July 13th, 2007

Well, it sure wasn’t Roseann Barr.

Sex is all many Christian groups want to make theh issue about. They seek to create the idea that homosexuality is nothing but about behavior and won’t even consider the eotional content.

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