Lesbian gang epidemic
|You gotta spin it to win it|
|Stop the presses!|
|We want pictures|
On the June 21st, 2007 edition of The O'Reilly Factor, Bill O'Reilly, along with the help of "Fox crime analyst" Rod Wheeler, reported that there is a lesbian gang epidemic in the US, particularly in the Washington, D.C. area, where there are up to 150 lesbian gangs. To illustrate the point, he showed a video that appeared on YouTube entitled "Chick Fight." He also claims that these gangs are forcibly recruiting young girls and coercing them into homosexuality. O'Reilly provided two examples, a Tennessee-based gang called GTO (Gays Taking Over), who he claims have been involved in raping young girls, and a Philadelphia-based gang called DTO (Dykes Taking Over), both of which were easily debunked by the Southern Poverty Law Center along with one of the alleged beatings.
Sgt. Brett Parson of the Washington, D.C. Metropolitan Police Department's Gay and Lesbian Liaison Unit has said that there are "150 to 175 total gangs in the D.C. area, and out of those only nine where the predominance of members are female", and Detective Patrick Word, president of the Mid-Atlantic Regional Gang Investigators Network, stated there is no evidence of a lesbian gang epidemic in his region (1 lesbian gang was reported).
Wheeler mentions that these gangs are carrying pink pistols. This appears to be a shot at a gay pro-gun organization entitled Pink Pistols, whose mottos are "Armed gays don't get bashed" and "Pick on someone your own caliber."
Presenting facts that are unsubstantiated is an easy way to create an audience. Unfortunately, fanning the flames of homophobia by creating such a story endangers the lives and livelihoods of homosexuals and those perceived as possibly being gay. All extraordinary news stories require fact-checking, as news stories often "go over the wire" and are picked up by other news agencies, perpetuating a falsehood. Similar propaganda techniques have been used by such regimes as Nazi Germany and the Soviet Union, to great effect.
Armed lesbian gangs have long been a staple of certain action movies (The Lizzies in The Warriors, The Cycle Sluts in Chopper Chicks in Zombie Town, etc.) Knowing him, it's possible that O'Reilly saw one of these films and mistook it for a documentary.
- "O'Reilly apologizes for overstating lesbian gang threat"
- "How I Got Fox News To Tell The Truth About 'Violent Lesbian Gangs'"
- GLAAD Demands O'Reilly Cut the Spin in Gay Gang Report
- Friday A/V Club: Pink Pistols, Bill O'Reilly, and the Lesbian Gang Menace, Reason