Fox News hosts Bill O’Reilly and Megyn Kelly faced-off over the issue white privilege — the idea that white Americans enjoy special societal benefits — Monday night, with the two debating the role that family, culture and personal responsibility play in perceived inequality.
Kelly, who seemingly embraced the sociological theory, told O’Reilly during an appearance on his program that there’s “a lot of evidence behind it” and proceeded to share statistics showing the vastly different conditions for blacks and whites in Ferguson, Missouri, and in the United States at large.
Among the facts Kelly shared is that black unemployment in Ferguson is three times what it is for whites and that a black child in the U.S. is four times more likely to live in a poor neighborhood than a white child.
While O’Reilly didn’t dismiss these figures, he said that “families, culture and personal responsibility” are the real issues at hand.
“The Asian American community is not a troubled situation as everybody knows. They’re academics are better than whites, they have language to overcome, while black Americans don’t,” he said. “It all comes down to families, culture, personal responsibility — all of these things which we don’t hear anything or much about and this is what drives the poverty.”
But Kelly didn’t agree that O’Reilly’s assessment addressed the full picture.
“It’s not just families or culture,” she said. “Look at that stat about the black children four times as likely to live in poor neighborhoods as white children, and in the St. Louis area there is documented white flight … the whites take off, these become black neighborhoods. The schools they get forgotten and the black population feels forgotten, Bill.”
She continued, “They have very few people to trust.”
But O’Reilly said that nothing will get better until the culture changes.
Watch the debate below: