Please read this letter I received from Jacqueline Eaton who lives on Long Island.:
"My husband, Robert, was killed in the World Trade Center attack, and I am writing to you, Mr. O'Reilly, out of desperation and frustration.
"At every turn, I hear about another fund established for the victims' families. To date, I have received less than $1,500, yet I have paid 10 visits to register with various agencies.
"I've been watching THE FACTOR religiously for the past month, encouraged by your tenacity to get answers. I feel in some way that you genuinely care.
"In addition to losing my husband, I feel as though I am losing any sense of pride and dignity. Why do I need to beg for the donated money?
"I want to remain hopeful that some authoritative body will see to the fair distribution of these funds, but each day that passes without my being contacted adds to my concern."
Mrs. Eaton, you're absolutely right to be concerned, but you will not lose your dignity, I promise. I'm passing your letter along to your congressman, Peter King, and to New York Gov. Pataki.
In my opinion, the governor has been far too passive in dealing with this issue. Maybe your letter will jolt him into reality.
I believe Congressman King will help you. I'll talk to him personally about it.
Now THE FACTOR has received hundreds of letters just like Mrs. Eaton's, and the time for diplomacy in this matter has passed. I am now calling for federal oversight because the state of New York has failed so dismally.
Congressman J.D. Hayworth of Arizona has written a formal letter to the chairman of the House Ways & Means Committee, Bill Thomas. The letter says in part, "It is clear that oversight is desperately needed, and since the charitable groups enjoy a tax-exempt status, I believe the Ways & Means Committee would be a logical choice to undertake this oversight role and ask that you consider just such action."
We are asking Chairman Thomas to come on THE FACTOR next week.
Beside defeating the enemy, there is no more important situation than helping the grieving families. I, once again, ask Gov. Pataki to do something.
And I also ask all the celebrities who appeared at the benefits to begin speaking out and demanding that the money they helped raise be quickly accounted for and organized. I've not heard one celebrity do that.
Next week, we'll do a report on this and see who steps up.
Finally, it is an absolute shame that this much pressure must be put upon powerful people to do the right thing. As we demonstrated with the Jesse Jackson investigation, non-profit organizations can pretty much do what they want. Few in government will watch them. That is a terrible situation.
I very much thank Jacqueline Eaton for writing that courageous letter to me, and I will not rest until all the families get the money that generous Americans have donated to them.
We'll read some of your letters on the subject at the end of the broadcast.
Most Ridiculous Item of the Day
Some students at the Dixie Hollins High School in St. Petersburg, Fla., wanted to do a physics experiment that would have dropped some eggs on a poster of Usama bin Laden. But some school officials blocked the action saying it was offensive and culturally insensitive. Oh.
Of course, that's way beyond ridiculous and indicative of the utter nonsense many public school kids are being subjected to by misguided educators. Because of the outcry from the good people around Tampa-St. Pete, the school capitulated, and the egg drop will take place.
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