O'Reilly's comments were met with a great deal of controversy, as discussed on a CNN panel moderated by Don Lemon the following night.
"If you close your eyes, you believe you're listening to a clip from 1968 or apartheid South Africa," said Bakari Sellers, vice chairman of the South Carolina Democratic Party and an attorney with the Strom Law Firm, L.L.C. in Columbia, South Carolina.
Sellers also assessed that O'Reilly's comment about race and white male oppression was "one of the few quotes [that] when you actually listen to it in context, it is actually worse."
Despite O'Reilly having made similar remarks for the past decade, Sellers was "astounded" to hear white supremacy advocated by the Fox News host, whose late-night show, he pointed out, is "very highly rated."
"The reason that I had a problem with Bill O'Reilly couching this conversation of white supremacy and somehow African Americans and Latinos and people of color and gay Americans and everyone who was a minority in this country attempting to take some power away from the [straight, cis] white man in the battle over the Electoral College. It shouldn't be couched as something this small," he explained.
"This is a larger conversation that we have to have," Sellers continued. "The Electoral College was based on our founders' racist ideology at the time that bred this. We're here now and we do need to talk about how we're going to disband some of these remnants of white supremacy that still exist."
When conservative commentator and Trump supporter Kayleigh McEnany pretended to agree with Sellers in her rebuttal, Sellers swiftly shut her down.
"That's my entire point, Kayleigh," he said. "We have to talk about the simple fact that we, African Americans, we don't want anything from white people. It's not as if we want to take something from white nationalists or white supremacists ... the 'white working class'... or white anybody."
Author: Alexandra Rosenmann