Berkeley Boycott Over Marine Disrespect

This is a rush transcript from "The O'Reilly Factor," February 28, 2008. This copy may not be in its final form and may be updated.

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BILL O'REILLY, HOST: "Factor follow-up" segment tonight, you may remember that on January 29th, the Berkeley, California City Council told the Marines to get out of town, totally disrespectful. That outraged millions of Americans. And this commercial was produced.

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UNIDENTIFIED MALE: On January 29th, the Berkeley City Council told Marine recruiters they were uninvited and unwelcome intruders and called upon citizens to impede the work of those Marines.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: They don't belong here. They shouldn't have come here. And they should leave.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Shamelessly, the Berkeley City Council is refusing to apologize to our troops.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I don't think we owe anyone an apology.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I don't think that we have to apologize to them.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Berkeley, you've gone too far, and we're not going to take it anymore.


O'REILLY: Well, now The San Jose Mercury News is reporting that some companies and business people are actually boycotting Berkeley.

Joining us now from the Bay area, Melanie Morgan, a talk show host on KSFO Radio, who is closely following the situation.

So the report in The San Jose Mercury, not a conservative paper by any stretch of the imagination. What's going on?

MELANIE MORGAN, RADIO TALK SHOW HOST: Well, first of all, let me tell you that the attack on an iconic symbol like the Marine Corps has hit Americans in the gut, Bill. I am telling you that this has had such a visceral effect that not only has it touched conservatives, but liberals, Democrats, and moderates are all responding to not only calls for a boycott, but they're getting involved in signing our petition at

So far, in the past 24 hours, we've had over 25,000 signatures, a total of well over 50,000 in the past few days. The response has been simply stunning.

O'REILLY: Now the petition says what?

MORGAN: The petition demands an apology from the Berkeley City Council, not only to the Marines, but to the Marine Corps family members, which have been gravely insulted.

Their men and women are overseas, a half a world away, living, fighting, and dying for their freedoms, for the rights of the Berkeley City Council to get up and act stupid in front of the rest of the country.

O'REILLY: Now, if they don't apologize, is there any other action you guys want to see?

MORGAN: We are — you know, this is like a cancer, an epidemic spreading across the country by the hard left, the Code Pink, and their enablers, the people who support the Berkeley City Council. We are working with — we're not actually supporting or not promoting actually a boycott of Berkeley, but that's being done by a man by the name of Brian Denard, who has a website called brigadeamerica, that is going to be launching on Monday.

O'REILLY: Why isn't your organization calling for a boycott?

MORGAN: Well, you know, I think that we have much more important work to do. Everybody has a part in this effort. What we are going to be doing is spreading out across the country. There are over — well over a documented dozen attacks on Marine recruiting centers in Murphysboro, Tennessee, to Chicago, Washington, D.C. And we've got work there that we're going to be concentrating on. So everybody's got a part of this to make a pushback.

O'REILLY: Some might say, and to the Marine families and other military people who, absolutely, have a right to be insulted, look, you know what Berkeley, California is. You know that it's been this way for 40 years. It's an anti-military, anti- American, they would say it's not, but I believe that they want a total breakdown of America's power structure, and then a different country, the secular progressive vision. So why should anybody care about what they say?

MORGAN: Well, you know, Berkeley City Council was elected, presumably, by the people of Berkeley. And it reflects their opinion...

O'REILLY: Right.

MORGAN: ...their anti-American opinion. And everybody around the rest of the country watching this has a perfect opportunity to say, hey, you know, we don't support this kind of attitude. And we are going to boycott you until you say you're sorry, until you apologize. That's a reasonable response by reasonable Americans.

O'REILLY: Now do you believe the San Jose report that businesses are getting hurt there?

MORGAN: Yes, absolutely. In fact, I'm in contact with over 150 Fortune 500 companies that have been put together in a list. These people are seeing that their service vendors and their people are not going to participate financially with Berkeley anymore. Millions of dollars have been taken off the table.


MORGAN: Berkeley's business community is getting hurt.

O'REILLY: Thank you. I appreciate it.

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