Transcript: Bill Cosby's Mission...

This is a partial transcript from "The O'Reilly Factor," Jan. 14, 2005, that has been edited for clarity.

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BILL O'REILLY, HOST: In the "Factor Follow-Up" segment tonight, Bill Cosby (search) continues his mission to confront bad behavior around the country. Last night, Cosby spoke in Detroit:


BILL COSBY, COMEDIAN: The poverty pimps and the victim pimps keep telling the victim to stay where they are. You're crippled, you can't walk, you can't get up, you can't do this, you can't do that. And I'm saying, you'd better get up.


Joining us now from Detroit is Angelo Henderson, co-host of the radio program "Inside Detroit" and Rochelle Riley, a columnist for "The Detroit Free Press," which sponsored the event.

Ms. Riley, we'll begin with you. I like Cosby. I liked his presentation. I think that confrontation is needed in this area. But some African-Americans have been offended by what he has to say. How did the crowd last night react to it?

ROCHELLE RILEY, HOSTED BILL COSBY EVENT: He was a huge hit. And I think a lot of the criticism is coming from people who are trying to defend folks and speak out on their behalf, when quite frankly, they're missing the point.

He's not talking to all African-Americans, nor is he talking about all African-Americans. But he made clear that if your kid is one of those kids who's walking around in $1,000 worth of clothes and not a dime's worth of sense, then he's talking to you. And he went to church, he went to the school board, he went all over the place to make the point.

O'REILLY: Now Mr. Henderson, you are associate pastor in addition to being a radio guy. And I understand that Cosby invoked Jesus' name a number of times. What was the context of that?

ANGELO HENDERSON, RADIO TALK SHOW HOST: Well, what he did was he talked -- it was very uncomfortable. And I would say challenging, Bill, because he showed -- he just reflected what some of the problems of our community, which we can't ignore -- literacy, you know, violence, murders, the problems in the schools.

And what he said was that God can't do the work all by himself. And he's absolutely right. I mean, he said and you call yourselves Christians. And part of it was just challenging the communities.

Here in Detroit, we have a church practically on every corner, it feels like, basically. And he's wondering how can you let these things go on? You can't -- no longer can you just say -- you can't blame the white man.

Part of it, like -- one of his main focuses was a statement that said "it's not what he is doing to you, but what you are not doing." And I think he really put the ball in our court as a community.

O'REILLY: Were there any white people in the audience?

HENDERSON: Oh, absolutely, absolutely.

RILEY: There were a few.

O'REILLY: Yes. So his message was primarily to black people, but there were white people there. Now...

HENDERSON: But he also...

O'REILLY: Go ahead, go ahead, Mr. Henderson.

HENDERSON: ...but he also told them, the white people that was there, don't think you can escape this...


HENDERSON: ...that your young people are under these same kind of influences.

O'REILLY: Absolutely not. You know, this is an across-the-board problem here. It's just concentrated in certain areas, some of which are black. Now Mr...

RILEY: I think the most...

O'REILLY: Yes, go ahead. What I'm having a little problem with is, and again, I respect Dr. Cosby. I'm actually going to call him a doctor here even though he won't talk with me. I'm a little insulted. He should come on this program.

But I don't know if the people that his message should reach take the time to go out and hear it. You know what I'm talking about? He might be preaching to the converted, Ms. Riley.

RILEY: Well, one of the things that we did in Detroit was to go through the agencies that work with people, who are their clients, who they thought might need to get a little bit of this message.

O'REILLY: That's...

RILEY: And they bused people in. -- We didn't do ticket giveaways -- And just invite the community, which upset a little bit of the community because the people who are usually the VIPs were not in the VIP section.

O'REILLY: So it was a targeted audience.

RILEY: It was a targeted audience, yes.

O'REILLY: But you know, the people in the crack houses and the people on the corner and the people that are really causing the trouble, they're not going to come to something like this. They don't want to be...

RILEY: Well, Bill Cosby is -- he's not going to get to them unless he goes to those corners.

O'REILLY: Right.

HENDERSON: But if you get to the people that they need to go to, to get the treatments, or to get the help or to get the unemployment funds, then those people can share that message.

And what he came and said was that he's not the savior. He's the person who's starting the conversation, that has to continue after he's gone. And if he goes around the country, this was his sixth city, and gets to every city where people start to think about their own personal responsibility and accountability, then they'll have the conversations for him.

O'REILLY: OK. Now Mr. Henderson, you think Jesse Jackson's going to take the poverty pimp remark personally?

HENDERSON: I don't think so. I think in all of these cases like Rochelle said, if the name fits, then wear it. You know, I think some people -- some of the people in the community did say ouch because, you know, he did paint a portrait of a certain segment. And like she said, we're not monolithic. So it didn't approach all parents when he says, you know, that more parents go to -- to go to a play or a musical event at school than they go to the parental conferences.

RILEY: That's right.

HENDERSON: You know, when you say no, say no and just don't keep changing your mind. You know, those kind of things. I mean, if you're that kind of parent, that that's permissive, then the shoe fits basically.

O'REILLY: Sure. Oh, OK.

HENDERSON: But I also think that it was interesting in his own Jesus approach, his whole idea that, you know, Jesus was out in the streets and that he carried his cross and other people watched. And I think that was so great about the program. And Rochelle did a great job pulling it together because she had actual examples.

RILEY: Thank you.

HENDERSON: Actual examples of people here in Detroit.

There was one group who had experienced violence and had been handicapped, paralyzed as a result of violence.

RILEY: Yes, they're called Pioneers for Peace (search).

HENDERSON: Pioneers for Peace.

RILEY: And they're all survivors of gunshot wounds. They're all either paraplegics or quadriplegics. And they go around to schools. They reached 25,000 students last year to show them what the real deal is.

O'REILLY: Yes, that's right.

RILEY: There's nothing glamorous or glorious about packing a gun and getting shot...

O'REILLY: You bet.

RILEY: ...because that's what happens. And that's what you look like.

O'REILLY: Well, look...

HENDERSON: And half of them are guys. One of the ladies was -- one of the members is a woman who's blind. But what I'm saying is that we need -- we have to have that authentic voice in the community. When you talk about who's going to be out on the streets, it has to be people who have gotten the message, who might have learned some of the hard...

O'REILLY: Yes, it can't be guys like me and the suits in New York. It's got to be the people, as you say, who experienced it.

Well, look...

RILEY: That's right.

O'REILLY: ...again, you guys are doing good work...

RILEY: Thank you.

O'REILLY: ...because if the community rallies -- if the community rallies, then these people have no place to hide. And that's what has to happen here.


O'REILLY: I got to run, Mr. Henderson and Ms. Riley. Thank you very much.

RILEY: Thank you so much.

O'REILLY: We appreciate it.

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