Talking Points

Bill O'Reilly: Are you your brother's keeper?

Talking Points 2/26


By Bill O'Reilly

If you watch ‘The Factor' often you know we believe that many of the social problems in America are the direct result of the collapsing family unit in some precincts. African-Americans, for example have a huge problem in that area. With 72 percent of black babies now born out of wedlock; tor white Americans the number is 29 percent.

Some disturbing facts: 48 percent of American children in single female households live in poverty as opposed to 11 percent in married families; 71 percent of all high school dropouts come from fatherless homes; 75 percent of all adolescent patients in chemical abuse centers come from fatherless homes; and boys without fathers present are twice as likely to become gang members than boys in traditional situations. The root of poverty, crime, and despair in America is the collapse of the traditional family.

On Super Bowl Sunday, I asked President Obama about this.


O'REILLY: 72 percent of babies in African-American community are born out of wedlock now. Why isn't there a campaign by you and the First Lady to address that problem very explicitly?

BARACK OBAMA, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: Yes actually, Bill, we address it explicitly all the time. I will send you at least 10 speeches I have made since I have been president talking about the importance of young people delaying gratification, talking about the importance of when it comes to child-rearing, paying child support; spending time with your kids, reading with them. So whether it's getting publicity or not is a whole different question.


O'REILLY: But now it will get publicity because tomorrow at the White House the President will announce a huge initiative called "My Brother's Keeper". Essentially it will target young black males and try to give them some hope.

Now, I will be at the White House tomorrow to cover this for you. And we will get specifics.

On a general basis, it is long past time for America to join together and help the kids. Put yourself into their position. Millions of children are born into chaotic homes where their parents are irresponsible or absent. How can kids like that compete against children from stable homes? The answer is they can't.

Now, the government is somewhat limited in what it can do. But it certainly can make it an issue. Having children out of wedlock is not good. Bringing children into the world when you can't support them is stupid and cruel. This message should be drummed into every American. It should be done in school, public school, private school, should be done in the media, and it should be done by the President.

Many Americans object to making judgments about behavior. That attitude is leading to disaster. We need to begin confronting this terrible problem.

One final statistic; 56 percent of all Americans in prison grew up in a single parent home.

That's "The Memo."