Photo: David Fisher/Rex USA.
Blame Beyoncé. If it weren't for the pop star's voluptuous body, her sex-charged music videos, and her overwhelming success, we might have fewer pregnant teens in this country.
That's the canard that Bill O'Reilly tried to spin on his show recently. "She knows — this woman knows — that young girls are getting pregnant in the African-American community," the Fox host said yesterday to his guests, attorney Eboni Williams and Concerned Women for America president Peggy Nance. "Now, it’s about 70 percent out of wedlock. She knows and doesn’t seem to care."
After showing a montage of Beyoncé's videos, which included a blurred-out shot of her bethonged behind in "Partition," O'Reilly told guests that the singer is partly responsible for the "cultural deficits that we see not only in black precincts, but in poor white precincts, and Hispanic precincts."
Even if he is completely ignorant of the fact that teen pregnancy rates have been on a steady decline in this country over the last decade and a half, did O'Reilly somehow miss that Beyoncé is married and got pregnant well into wedlock?
Nance — who once said that the Age of Reason "led us down the dark path to the Holocaust" — knows that the singer is married, even if she didn't know that Beyoncé's song is called "Drunk In Love," not "Drunk Love." Instead, she argued that Beyoncé doesn't promote her blessed union enough: "I wish she would really talk to kids in that community about marriage and about getting married first and then having a kid, like she did."
But the fact that Beyoncé is a married mother doesn't seem to matter to O'Reilly. When Williams pointed out that the singer pushed a message of female empowerment in her recent album, O'Reilly dismissed it out of hand. "The empowering stuff is just so much garbage," he said. "She sings songs."
Maybe O'Reilly's problem isn't Beyoncé, per se — it's the threat of black female sexuality. Her marriage, inconvenient to his point, is simply glossed over, as are any of her feminist motivations (however valid they may or may not be). "She should be smart enough to know what she's doing now is harming some children," he said. Because she is a beautiful, powerful woman of color who is unafraid to show her body, Beyoncé — not socioeconomic inequalities or a lack of sex education — must ultimately be responsible for teen pregnancy.