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Forbidden Fruit? Flirting With Bisexuality

This is a partial transcript from The O'Reilly Factor, January 13, 2004.

Watch The O'Reilly Factor weeknights at 8 p.m. and 11 p.m. ET and listen to the Radio Factor!

BILL O'REILLY, HOST: In the "Back of the Book" segment, this report is not for children. It was originally put out there by The Washington Post. The reporter would not come on The Factor, which makes me kind of skeptical, but here it is.

Apparently, some high school girls are flirting with bisexuality (search) in a public way, perhaps driven by that Madonna-Britney Spears (search) deal. The Post reports that one teacher at Coolidge High in D.C. threatened some girls who were kissing, setting off a controversy. He threatened to discipline them.

Joining us now from Los Angeles is Dr. Catherine Cardinal, a psychotherapist and author of the book "The Ten Commandments of Relationships."

You know, I read this story with a lot of skepticism. The reporter, as I said, wouldn't come on. I think it's probably puffing something up that maybe a few girls are doing to try to get attention. How do you see it?

CATHERINE CARDINAL, PH.D., PSYCHOTHERAPIST: Exactly, Bill. I'm with you 100 percent.

You know, teens -- their job is to shock us. Teens are supposed to push the limits. I mean, if you think back to the '60s, what's going on now with this bisexuality is just merely another step in the sexual revolution. I was predicting this 25 years ago, that this would happen.

O'REILLY: Oh, yes, but I mean the bisexuality thing has been around forever because guys drive that market. I don't know why.

CARDINAL: Well, look at Marlena Dietrich in the old movies. Look at what she was doing.

O'REILLY: Yes, but what I'm trying to get across here is that there is a culture now, as the dean of the Jamaica High School said, that just allows anything. So the girls see this Britney Spears-Madonna thing, and right away, they're going to try to do it just to be cool. I mean isn't that's what's happening?

CARDINAL: Yes, it's possible. Now let's look at this. Does exposure to what pop culture is doing make and shape a person's sexuality? Process shapes sexuality, and sexuality is formed by going through a variety of processes individual to each teen.

O'REILLY: Yes, but I'm living proof that that's not true because I didn't have any sex. Nobody would have sex with me, and after seeing Ann- Margret in "Viva Las Vegas," I was like on a one-track deal. I didn't need to experiment, I didn't need the process, I didn't need the evolution. It was there's Ann-Margret, I know what I want, I just can't get it.

CARDINAL: Bill, you know what? If you move to L.A., I can fix you up with a few people. No problem.

O'REILLY: Yes. I understand that, in L.A., San Francisco, here in New York, there are lots of people floating around who are ambidextrous. However, no high school kid should define their sexuality in public during school hours anyway. That's insane.

CARDINAL: Well, I would say that that is crossing a boundary, but allowing them to experiment, I'd say it's a good thing.

O'REILLY: What? Come on.

CARDINAL: Wait, wait, wait.

O'REILLY: Allowing who to experiment where?

CARDINAL: Whoa, Bill. Give me a chance here. Listen, listen, listen. As long as I can remember -- I'm 50 years old -- I went to the tail end of the '60s -- there have always been exhibitionists. In grade school, there was a girl that would show you her panties for a dollar.

I'm not saying it's right, but it's not new to bisexuality...

O'REILLY: Well, but who's...

CARDINAL: ... I think there has to be limits on it.

O'REILLY: What parent in their right mind is going to allow their young daughter to experiment with bisexuality? Come on.

CARDINAL: Oh, each parent has to make that decision. But are the kids going to do it? Yes, they are. It is merely another step…

O'REILLY: Well, they're not going to do it if they're locked in the basement. I mean...

CARDINAL: Well, now that's child abuse, Bill. We don't talk about that in California. We don't promote that.

O'REILLY: Yes, OK. So my choice is I'm going to let my daughter who's 12 experiment with bisexuality, or lock her in the basement? She's going to be in the basement.

Look, Doctor, it's that libertine attitude -- there are boundaries, and children should know what the boundaries are. I'm going to give you the last word.

CARDINAL: I agree with you. I agree with you, Bill, 100 percent. But I have to tell you this kind of thing has been going on for a long time. I remember in school a whole group of girls that were experimenting. I myself am heterosexual, but it's been going on forever. Now it's just in the news. So we have to let it be. It will come around.

O'REILLY: All right, Doctor. Thank you very much. As always, we appreciate it.

CARDINAL: Nice to talk to you. Bye.

O'REILLY: OK. All of this is just way beyond me.

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